Pirates: Piracy and Golden Age

1076 WordsNov 23, 20125 Pages
Josh Davis FYE 102 Paper 1 9/28/2012 Golden Age Pirates vs. Modern Day Pirates Piracy has been around before the time of the pyramids. Once merchant ship began to deliver goods to other countries, others realized the financial gain that could be made by stealing those goods and selling them themselves. Pirates have ruled the seas at different times. Once Europeans settled in the American colonies, pirates plundered towns along the coast and attacked almost every ship they came in contact with. During the 18th century, wars gave rise to privateering; a legal form of piracy. But, after the War of 1812, this was no longer tolerated. Government put an end to most piracy but, today there are still pirates. By comparing the pirates…show more content…
Efforts to end piracy began during ancient times. This Island of Rhodes was the first to include piracy in their maritime laws. In the Golden Age almost every nation had established maritime laws. Sir Charles Hedges, a judge of the British Admiralty Court during the late 1600’s, says “pirates are thieves who seize a ship and/or its cargo through violent means upon the sea”. Despite many legal attempts to stop piracy an international definition of piracy did not exist till 1958. Article 15, 1958 Geneva Convention of the High Seas and Article 101, 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea defines piracy as “a violent seizure on the high seas of a private ship or the illegal detainment of persons property aboard said ship for the purpose of private gain, nor can a government commit an act of piracy”. Piracy in the Golden Age devastated the trade economy. Hundreds of ships carrying numerous amounts of goods were plundered. Today, piracy hardly dents the two trillion dollar a year shipping industry. In 1997 losses amounted to “$.32 for every $10,000” J. Gottschalk. This leaves little financial incentive for companies to deal with the problem. Violence was and is still very common amongst pirates. No one knows for sure show many people were murdered by Golden Age Pirates but, its number was staggering. Modern day pirates have left a dent themselves. During a five year period the UN High Commissioner said that an estimated 2,283 women

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