Libertatia hoped to endure, and Mission died in its defense. But most ofthe pirate utopias were meant to be temporary; in fact the corsairs' true"republics" were their ships, which sailed under Articles. The shore enclavesusually had no law at all. The last classic example, Nassau in the Bahamas,a beachfront resort of shacks and tents devoted to wine, women (and probablyboys too, to judge by Birge's ), song (the pirates were inordinately fond of music and used to hire onbands for entire cruises), and wretched excess, vanished overnight whenthe British fleet appeared in the Bay. Blackbeard and "Calico Jack" Rackhamand his crew of pirate women moved on to wilder shores and nastier fates,while others meekly accepted the Pardon and reformed. But the Buccaneertradition lasted, both in Madagascar where the mixed-blood children of thepirates began to carve out kingdoms of their own, and in the Caribbean,where escaped slaves as well as mixed black/white/red groups were able tothrive in the mountains and backlands as "Maroons." The Maroon communityin Jamaica still retained a degree of autonomy and many of the old folkwayswhen Zora Neale Hurston visited there in the 1920's (see ). The Maroons of Suriname still practice African "paganism."


Satisfied customers are saying