Test Your Knowledge: Famous Pirates Quiz
By: Nathan Chandler
About This Quiz
When the seas were wild and untamed, criminally-minded sailors terrorized ships and cities the world over. How much do you know about these famous pirates?
What was the pirate name for John Roberts, who captured hundreds of ships in the early 1700s?
With nearly 500 captured ships to his name, he is often regarded as one of the most successful pirates in history.
What was John Rackam's pirate name?
He wore wild clothing that gave birth to his name.
How was Calico Jack finally apprehended by a pirate hunter?
While partying with fellow pirates, a pirate hunter engaged his crew and caught Jack.
He fell for a woman who was actually a spy.
Black Caesar operated with which other well-known pirate?
He survived the battle that killed Blackbeard but was caught and hanged.
Who was also known as the "Rhode Island Pirate?"
He had a very successful (but brief) career cut short by a cannonball to the gut.
What was the pirate nickname for Edward Teach?
He was an English pirate who lived until around 1720.
What does "barbarossa" mean in English?
The Barbarossa Brothers were pirates in the early 16th century; the eldest brother had a red beard.
How did Aruj (the eldest Barbarossa brother) lose an arm?
A Spanish cannon blew off his arm, but it didn't kill him.
How many ships might have belonged to the pirate named Cheung Po Tsai?
He also had many thousands of men at his disposal; he eventually turned and helped the government capture pirates.
Blackbeard was famous for eschewing what sort of behavior?
Instead of relying on force, he tended to trick his victims.
How many ships did the Barbarossa Brothers capture in a single month in 1512?
They didn't just take ships; they were bold enough to attack and capture cities, too.
Which man was often called "The Gentleman Pirate?"
He was born into a rich family but opted for crime, sailing a ship named "Revenge."
How did Blackbeard manage to get within striking distance of the ships that he attacked?
He used a variety of flags.
He would raise the same flag as the ships he was attacking, making it seem as though he was a fellow countryman.
His ships were faster than most.
He knew the ocean currents better than most captains.
In the 1600s, which country deemed Francis Drake a pirate?
To the English, he was a brave sea captain; to the Spaniards he was a terrorizer.
In addition to raiding many towns and enslaving many people, for what feat is Francis Drake known?
sinking an entire fleet in one battle
He was the first person to serve as captain aboard a ship that sailed all the way around the globe.
In 1695, Henry Every raided a ship and took treasure that would be worth about how much in today's dollars?
And with that feat, he wisely retired, making him one of the few pirates to survive his adventures.
Why did Blackbeard ignite substances hidden under his hat?
to help him light his pipe
It made it easier to ignite weapons.
The smoke made him look scary.
He was all about the image; his frightening appearance terrified both his men and his opponents.
Anne Bonny fought like a man and joined in with which well-known pirate?
After she was arrested, she avoided execution by saying that she was pregnant.
"Sea Dogs" were basically a pirate group authorized by the government of which country?
Queen Elizabeth unleashed these men to plunder ships and cities and then bring the riches back to England.
What happened to the Sea Dogs once Spain and England made peace?
They started pirating in other places.
Apparently the pirate lifestyle is hard to leave; many headed for the coast of Africa or the Caribbean.
Which pirate created the Black Fleet, ships painted black with red sails?
She was known as the "Lioness of Brittany" and hunted down French vessels with ferocity.
Why did the Lioness of Brittany prey on only French ships, often killing almost everyone onboard?
revenge for the killing of her husband
The French beheaded her husband, and she set off on a brutal (and effective) campaign of revenge.
The French poisoned her livestock.
Which pirate was know to strangle victims with so much force that their eyes would pop out of their heads?
His men raped and pillaged their way across the Caribbean, often defeating foes who had superior numbers.
After they killed him, what did attackers do to Blackbeard?
They strung the head up on their ship so they could collect a reward for killing him.
Benjamin Hornigold was a pirate who was pardoned in exchange for hunting which other pirate?
Blackbeard was his second-in-command at one point; Hornigold eventually died during a storm.
Which pirate was known as the "Bane of the Spanish?"
He did his work in the mid-1600s and was known for his savagery.
Francois l'Olonnais supposedly performed what act in retribution for an ambush?
cut out a sailor's heart and bit it
Perhaps Ozzy Osbourne is a distant relative.
gouged out an attacker's eyes and fed them to wild hogs
cut off a man's legs and threw him into the ocean
Ching Shih, a female pirate in the early 1800s, may have commanded how many pirates?
perhaps tens of thousands
And she may have had more than 1,000 ships, making her more powerful than many militaries.
Which famous pirate may not have been a pirate?
Captain Kidd may have gotten most of his reputation from a widely-publicized trial instead of actual acts that he performed.
How did Ching Shih's career of piracy come to an end?
She was tried and executed.
She retired and started a new business.
No force could defeat hers, but she decided to accept pardons for herself and her people.