Aye, we fight to live free.

So ye thought I were the only one, did ye? I comes from a long line o’ women adventurers who dressed as men tae gain equal treatment. There be many more, but as they were ne’er unmasked, we’ll ne’er know who they were. Below there be listed links tae some, an’ names o’ others, as sort o’ a mini-tribute tae them that had the guts tae fight an’ the blood-thirstiness tae kill for the right tae live as free as they wanted.
So begins a great website on Historical Female Pirates.Alvilda and her crew fought back to the best of their abilities, but in the gulf of Finland they were bested at last. Prince Alf and his men boarded the pirates’ ship, where hand to hand fighting ensued. After sustaining heavy casualties, Alvilda’s crew succumbed and she herself was taken captive. With her beauty concealed by a face covering helmet, she was taken prisoner, and it was only when this helmet was removed that Prince Alf realized who the scourge of the seas had been. For her part, Alvilda was so impressed by how Alf had fought in battle that she married him on the spot. She went on to share his wealth and throne as Queen of Denmark, and together they had a daughter, who they named Gurith. Whether little Gurith followed in her mother’s ocean going ways is not known.
And then there was the fiery Jane de Belleville, a French noblewoman who turned against her country when her beloved husband was executed by the French as a spy. With vengeance in her heart, she sided with the English in the 1345 invasion of Brittany. Seeking to enter the fray herself, she purchased and prepared three ships with money from the sale of her worldly possessions. She was a ruthless mistress of revenge at sea and on land, and no ship nor town near the coast of Normandy was safe from her wrath. With a flaming torch in one hand and a sword in the other, she must have been a fearsome sight to behold, as she burned whole Norman villages to the ground.
Finally, I can’t leave out Anne Bonny, “the most notorious female pirate that ever lived!” who supposedly gained her fame before she was twenty years old.
In general, it seems, gutsy women don’t choose pirateering unless (1) it becomes their absoslutely only escape from lives of enforced quiet desperation or (2) they seek revenge for some ill-fate that overcame their mates.
Anger turned inward becomes depression. Anger turned outward makes for some feisty formidable ferocious willful wenchy women.
The following is a chant attributed to Anne Bonny:
Drain, drain the bowl,
each fearless soul.
Let the world wag as it will.
Let the heavens growl
and the devil howl.
Drain, drain the bowl
and fill.


2 thoughts on “Aye, we fight to live free.

  1. Is it true? I have heard the Danish Female Pirates “Anne Sofie Hansen” (AKA Rational Angel) and “Anne Meilandt” (AKA Angel of Love) took control of the ship “Prince Niels Juel’s Retort” in 1650 and after an intense battle captured a Spanish gold transport carrying over 120,000 pieces of gold. How did two Danish Women carry the loyalty of a male crew necessary to man a frigate? What was their battle plan and how did they accomplish this feat? I have heard that Anne Sofie Hansen went on to marry an Aztec/Scottish prince in Mexico after her pirate career and that Anne Meilandt’s end is yet unknown. Is there any truth to this story? I’m a pirate history buff and would like confirmation!

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