THE DOWNFALL OF PIRACY
|'The Taking of Teach the Pirate' (aka 'The Downfall of Piracy') was written by a twelve year old Ben Franklin upon hearing of the news of the killing of Edward Teach, also known as Blackbeard the Pirate, who had stolen from shipping vessels and coastal towns along the east coast of North America and the East Indies for several years.
Will you hear of a bloody Battle,
Lately fought upon the Seas?
It will make your Ears to rattle,
And your Admiration cease;
Have you heard of Teach the Rover,
And his Knavery on the Main;
How of Gold he was a Lover,
How he lov'd all ill-got Gain!
When the Act of Grace appeared,
Captain Teach, with all his Men,
Unto Carolina steered,
Where they kindly us'd him then;
There he marry'd to a Lady,
And gave her five hundred Pound,
But to her he prov'd unsteady,
For he soon march 'd off the Ground.
And returned, as I tell you,
To his Bobbery as before,
Burning, sinking Ships of value,
Filling them with Purple Gore;
When he was at Carolina,
There the Governor did send
To the Governor of Virginia,
That he might assistance lend.
Then the Man-of-War's Commander,
Two small Sloops he fitted out,
Fifty Men he put on board, Sir,
Who resolv'd to stand it out;
The Lieutenant he commanded
Both the Sloops, and you shall hear
How, before he landed,
He suppress'd them without fear.
Valiant Maynard as he sailed,
Soon the Pirate did espy,
With his Trumpet he then hailed,
And to him did reply:
Captain Teach is our Commander,
Maynard said, he is the Man
Whom I am resolv'd to hang, Sir,
Let him do the best he can.
Teach replyed unto Maynard,
You no Quarter here shall see,
But be hang'd on the Mainyard,
You and all your Company;
Maynard, said, I none desire
Of such Knaves as thee and thine,
None I'll give, Teach then replyed,
My Boys, give me a Glass of Wine.
He took the Glass, and drank Damnation
Unto Maynard and his Crew;
To himself and Generation,
Then the Glass away he threw;
Brave Maynard was resolv'd to have him,
Tho' he'd Cannons nine or ten;
Teach a broadside quickly gave him,
Killing sixteen valiant Men.
Maynard boarded him, and to it
They fell with Sword and Pistol too;
They had Courage, and did show it,
Killing of the Pirate's Crew.
Teach and Maynard on the Quarter,
Fought it out most manfully,
Maynard's Sword did cut him shorter,
Losing his head, he there did die.
Every Sailor fought while he, Sir,
Power had to wield the Sword,
Not a Coward could you see, Sir,
Fear was driven from aboard;
Wounded Men on both Sides fell, Sir,
'T was a doleful Sight to see,
Nothing could their Courage quell, Sir,
0, they fought courageously.
When the bloody Fight was over,
We're informed by a Letter writ,
Teach's Head was made a Cover,
To the Jack Staff of the Ship;
Thus they sailed to Virginia,
And when they the Story told,
How they kill'd the Pirates many,
They'd Applause from young and old.