In 1674, it is three years since Henry Morgan’s pirates sacked Panama. England is now at peace with Spain, and soon France, Holland, and Spain will briefly be at peace among themselves. But soon buccaneers and their French counterparts, the filibusters, will seize the opportunity of material gain presented by the far-flung and failing Spanish Empire. And Spain will produce its own notorious pirates, whose depredations against the English and French will become legend. These men of opportunistic calculation and desperate courage live in a wilder, larger, and richer time and place than any other frontier in modern history—the Spanish Main. Unflinchingly, unhesitatingly, unabashedly, they will take to the peaceful seas for riches by force of arms. The world will witness piracy on a grand scale.
While Benerson Little’s previous work showed brilliantly how pirates actually plied their trade, The Buccaneer’s Realm focuses on their cultural and physical environments. It describes not merely their deeds but their world—the New World of the Spanish Main and its many peoples, freedoms, dangers, and exploits that are the foundation of the Americas. A detailed and lively description of pirate life, it will especially appeal to readers with an interest in maritime, naval, military, and colonial history, as well as sociologists, anthropologists, and armchair adventurers.