John Taylor (pirate)

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For other people named John Taylor, see John Taylor (disambiguation).
John Taylor
Born England
Piratical career
Type Pirate
Allegiance None
Rank Captain
Base of operations West Indies,Indian Ocean.
Commands Victory & the Cassandra.
John Taylor's flag.

John Taylor was a pirate who lived in the early 18th century. He was Edward England's quartermaster and popular with the crew due to his violent disposition.[1] Taylor was responsible for the vote that removed Edward England from command. After that Taylor continued to cruise and captured Arabian and European prizes off the Indian coast.[2]

Nossa Senhora do Cabo[edit]

At Reunion Island (off the coast of Madagascar) in April 1721, he together with Olivier Levasseur captured the most valuable prize in pirate history, the Nossa Senhora do Cabo (Our Lady of the Cape).[3] The ship carried gold, uncut diamonds and church regalia belonging to the retiring viceroy of Portuguese India.The Portuguese ship had been dismasted in a storm and proved to be an easy prize. It was captured after a brief boarding action. Levasseur and Taylor made off with the treasure then valued at more than a million pounds sterling.


In 1722 Levasseur and Taylor eventually separated after a serious argument and Taylor went back to the Caribbean.[4] Taylor eventually headed for Panama, arriving there in 1723. In Panama, the governor of Portobello pardoned Taylor and his crew in exchange for his ship the Cassandra. What became of Taylor after that is uncertain although one report claims he became an officer in the Armada de Barlovento.[2]


  1. ^ A General History of the Robberies and Murders of the Most Notorious Pirates by Charles Johnson
  2. ^ a b Piracy: The Complete History by Angus Konstam
  3. ^ Life Under the Jolly Roger: Reflections on Golden Age Piracy by Gabriel Kuhn
  4. ^ Pirates & Privateers of Mauritius by Denis Piat

Further reading[edit]

  • Rogozinski, Jan. Pirates!: Brigands, Buccaneers, and Privateers in Fact, Fiction, and Legend. New York: Da Capo Press, 1996. ISBN 0-306-80722-X
  • Rogozinski, Jan. Honor Among Thieves: Captain Kidd, Henry Every, and the Pirate Republic Libertalia. Mechanicsburg, Pa: Stackpole Books, 2000. ISBN 0-8117-1529-9
  • Seitz, Don Carlos. Under the Black Flag: Exploits of the Most Notorious Pirates Mineola, Ny: Courier Dover Publications, 2002. ISBN 0-486-42131-7

External links[edit]