Alexander Exquemelin, whose probable French origins remain unclear, was most certainly on board the ship of the infamous pirate captain, Henry Morgan, during his raid on Panama City in 1671. His association with the buccaneers began around 1669, when he was sold from his indentured servitude with the French West India Company to a barber-surgeon, who taught him the trade. His subsequent years as a surgeon on board various pirate ships led to the publication of "The Buccaneers of America" in 1678. This shocking portrait of the Seventeenth century sea-rovers, since revealed to contain several errors and exaggerations, includes Exquemelin's sensationalized accounts of international criminals who performed inhuman acts of cruelty. The story, originally published in Dutch, was quickly translated into several languages. The original text has attained historical notoriety as an extraordinary source of information about the legendary pirates, despite Henry Morgan's claims of slander and libel against the publishers of the novel. They were later court ordered to revise future editions of the book.
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- Title page
- THE TRANSLATOR TO THE READER
- PART I.
- CHAPTER I. The author sets forth towards the Western Islands, in the Service of the West India Company of France. They meet with an English frigate, and arrive at the Island of Tortuga.
- CHAPTER II. Description of the Island of Tortuga: of the fruits and plants there growing: how the French settled there, at two several times, and cast out the Spaniards, first masters thereof. The Author of this book was twice sold in the said Island.
- CHAPTER III. Description of the great and famous Island of Hispaniola
- CHAPTER IV. Of the Fruits, Trees and Animals that are found at Hispaniola.
- CHAPTER V. Of all the sorts of quadruped Animals and Birds that are found in this Island. As also a relation of the French Buccaneers.
- CHAPTER VI. Of the origin of the most famous Pirates of the coasts of America. A notable exploit of Pierre le Grand.
- CHAPTER VII. After what manner the Pirates arm their vessels, and how they regulate their voyages.
- PART II.
- CHAPTER I. Origin of Francis L'Ollonais, and beginning of his robberies.
- CHAPTER II. L'Ollonais equips a fleet to land upon the Spanish islands of America, with intent to rob, sack and burn whatever he met.
- CHAPTER III. L'Ollonais makes new preparations to take the city of St. James de Leon
- as also that of Nicaragua, where he miserably perishes.
- CHAPTER IV. Of the Origin and Descent of Captain Henry Morgan-his exploits and a continuation of the most remarkable actions of his life.
- CHAPTER V. Some account of the Island of Cuba. Capt. Morgan attempts to preserve the Isle of St. Catharine as a refuge and nest to Pirates
- but fails of his designs. He arrives at and takes the village of El Puerto del Principe.
- CHAPTER VI. Captain Morgan resolves to attack and plunder the city of Porto Bello. To this effect he equips a fleet, and, with little expense and small forces, takes the said place.
- CHAPTER VII. Captain Morgan takes the city of Maracaibo, on the coast of New Venezuela. Piracies committed in those Seas. Ruin of three Spanish ships, that were set forth to hinder the robberies of the Pirates.
- PART III.
- CHAPTER I. Captain Morgan goes to the Isle of Hispaniola to equip a new fleet, with intent to pillage again upon the coasts of the West Indies.
- CHAPTER II. What happened in the river De la Hacha.
- CHAPTER III. Captain Morgan leaves the island of Hispaniola, and goes to that of St. Catharine, which he takes.
- CHAPTER IV. Captain Morgan takes the castle of Chagre, with four hundred men sent for this purpose from the Isle of St. Catharine.
- CHAPTER V. Captain Morgan departs from the Castle of Chagre, at the head of one thousand two hundred men, with design to take the city of Panama.
- CHAPTER VI. Captain Morgan sends several canoes and boats to the South Sea. He sets fire to the City of Panama. Robberies and cruelties committed there by the Pirates till their return to the Castle of Chagre.
- CHAPTER VII. Of a voyage by the author, along the coasts of Costa Rica, at his return towards Jamaica. What happened most remarkable in the said voyage. Some observations made by him at that time.
- CHAPTER VIII. The Author departs towards the Cape of Grace à Dios. Of the Commerce which here the Pirates exercise with the Indians. His arrival at the Island De los Pinos
- and finally, his return to Jamaica.
- CHAPTER IX. The Relation of the shipwreck, which Monsieur Bertram Ogeron, Governor of the Isle of Tortuga, suffered near the Isles of Guadanillas. How both he and his companions fell into the hands of the Spaniards. By what arts he escaped their hands, and preserved his life. The enterprise which he undertook against Porto Rico, to deliver his people. The unfortunate success of that design.
- CHAPTER X. A relation of what encounters lately happened at the Islands of Cayana and Tobago, between the Count de Estres, Admiral of France, in America, and the Heer Jacob Binkes, Vice-Admiral of the United Provinces, in the same parts.
- PART IV.
- CHAPTER I. Captain Coxon, Sawkins, Sharp and others set forth in a fleet towards the province of Darien, upon the continent of America. Their designs to pillage and plunder in those parts. Number of their ships, and strength of their forces by sea and land.
- CHAPTER II. They marched towards the town of Santa Maria with design to take it. The Indian King of Darien meets them by the way. Difficulties of this march, with other occurrences till they arrive at the place.
- CHAPTER III. They take the town of Santa Maria with no loss of men, and but small booty of what they fought for. Description of the place, country and river adjacent. They resolve to go and plunder for the second time the city of Panama.
- CHAPTER IV. The Buccaneers leave the town of Santa Maria, and proceed by sea to take Panama. Extreme difficulties, with sundry accidents and dangers of that voyage.
- CHAPTER V. Shipwreck or Mr. Ringrose, the author of this narrative. He is taken by the Spaniards and miraculously by them preserved. Several other accidents and disasters which befell him after the loss of his companions till he found them again. Description of the Gulf of Vallona.
- CHAPTER VI. The Buccaneers prosecute their voyage, till they come within sight of Panama. They take several barks and prisoners by the way. Are descried by the Spaniards before their arrival. They order the Indians to kill the prisoners.
- CHAPTER VII. They arrive within sight of Panama. Are encountered by three small men-of-war. They fight them with only sixty-eight men, and utterly defeat them, taking two of the said vessels. Description of that bloody fight. They take several ships at the Isle of Perico before Panama.
- CHAPTER VIII. Description of the state and condition of Panama, and the parts adjacent. What vessels they took while they blocked up the said Port. Captain Coxon with seventy more returns home. Sawkins is chosen in chief.
- CHAPTER IX. Captain Sawkins, chief commander of the Buccaneers, is killed before Puebla Nueva. They are repulsed from the said place. Captain Sharp chosen to be their leader. Many more of their company leave them and return home overland.
- CHAPTER X. They depart from the island of Cayboa to the Isle of Gorgona, where they careen their vessels. Description of this Isle. They resolve to go and plunder Arica, leaving their design of Guayaquil.
- CHAPTER XI. The Buccaneers depart from the Isle of Gorgona, with design to plunder Arica. They lose one another by the way. They touch at the Isle of Plate, or Drake's Isle, where they meet again. Description of this Isle. Some memoirs of Sir Francis Drake. An account of this voyage, and the coasts all along. They sail as far in a fortnight, as the Spaniards usually do in three months.
- CHAPTER XII. Captain Sharp and his company depart from the Isle of Plate, in prosecution of their voyage towards Arica. They take two Spanish vessels by the way, and learn intelligence from the enemy. Eight of their company destroyed at the Isle of Gallo. Tediousness of this voyage, and great hardships they endured. Description of the coast all along, and their sailings.
- CHAPTER XIII. A continuation of their long and tedious voyage to Arica, with a description of the coasts and sailings thereunto. Great hardship they endured for want of water and other provisions. They are descried at Arica, and dare not land there
- the country being all in arms before them. They retire from thence, and go to Puerto de Hilo, close by Arica. Here they land, take the town with little or no loss on their side, refresh themselves with provisions
- but in the end are cheated by the Sp
- CHAPTER XIV. The Buccaneers depart from the Port of Hilo, and sail to that of Coquimbo. They are descried before their arrival. Notwithstanding they land: are encountered by the Spaniards, and put them to flight. They take, plunder, and fire the City of la Serena. A description thereof. A Stratagem of the Spaniards in endeavouring to fire their ship, discovered and prevented. They are deceived again by the Spaniards, and forced to retire from Coquimbo, without any ransom for the City, or conside
- CHAPTER XV. The Buccaneers depart from Coquimbo for the Isle of Juan Fernandez. An exact account of this voyage. Misery they endure, and great dangers they escape very narrowly there. They mutiny among themselves, and choose Watling to be their chief commander. Description of the island. Three Spanish men-of-war meet with the buccaneers, at the said island
- but these outbrave them on the one side, and give them the slip on the other.
- CHAPTER XVI. The Buccaneers depart from the Isle of Juan Fernandez to that of Iqique. Here they take several prisoners, and learn intelligence of the posture of affairs at Arica. Cruelty committed upon one of the said prisoners, who had rightly informed them. They attempt Arica the second time. and take the town, but are beaten out of it again before they could plunder, with great loss of men, many of them being killed, wounded, and made prisoners. Captain Watling, their chief Commander, is kill
- CHAPTER XVII. A description of the Bay of Arica. They sail hence to the port of Guasco, where they get provisions. A draft of the said port. They land again at Hilo to revenge the former affronts, and take what they could find.
- CHAPTER XVIII. They depart from the Port of Hilo to the Gulf of Nicoya, where they take down theirs decks and mend the sailing of their ship. Forty-seven of their companions leave them, and go home over land. A description of the Gulf of Nicoya. They take two barks and some prisoners there. Several other remarks belonging to this voyage.
- CHAPTER XIX. They depart from the Gulf of Nicoya to Golfo Dulce, where they careen their vessel. An account of their sailings along the coast. Also a description of Golfo Dulce. The Spaniards force the Indians of Darien to a peace, by a stratagem contrived in the name of the English.
- CHAPTER XX. They depart from Golfo Dulce, to go and cruise under the Equinoctial. Here they take a rich Spanish vessel with 37,000 Pieces of Eight, besides plate and other goods. They take also a Packet-boat bound from Panama to Lima. An account of their sailings and the coasts along.
- CHAPTER XXI. They take another Spanish ship richly laden under the equinoctial. They make several dividends of their booty among themselves. They arrive at the Isle of Plate, where they are in danger of being all massacred by their slaves and prisoners. Their departure thence for the port and bay of Paita, with design to plunder the said place.
- CHAPTER XXII. They arrive at Paita, where they are disappointed of their expectations, as not daring to land, seeing all the country alarmed before them. They bear away for the Strait of Magellan. Description of the bay and port of Paita, and Colan. An account of their sailings towards the Strait afore-mentioned.
- CHAPTER XXIII. The Buccaneers arrive at a place incognito, to which they give the name of the Duke of York's Islands. A description of the said islands, and of the gulf, or lagoon, wherein they lie, so far as it was searched. They remain there many days by stress of weather, not without great danger of being lost. An account of some other remarkable things that happened there.
- CHAPTER XXIV. They depart from the English Gulf in quest of the Straits of Magellan which they cannot find. They return home by an unknown way, never navigated before.
- CHAPTER XXV. The Buccaneers continue their navigation, without seeing any land, till they arrive at the Caribbean Islands in the West Indies. They give away their ship to some of their companions that were poor, and disperse for several countries. The author of this Journal arrives in England.
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