Pirates and Prostitutes - Seeking the invisible: Identifying the cultural footprint for illicit activity in early 17th-century Ireland
Author(s): Connie Kelleher
The North Atlantic headquarters of the ‘Confederacy of Deep-Sea Pirates’ was located along the southwest coast of Ireland. Here pirates lived and traded with native Irish, government officials and English settlers under the Munster Plantation. Many of the pirates’ families lived locally and ran legitimate businesses ashore. Prostitutes also operated within this remote landscape where the lines between legal and illicit were constantly blurred.
Contemporary historical documents inform on these activities but tracing the evidence on the ground for these ‘outcasts to civil society’ is where the challenge lies. Looking to the landscape to identify new sites and reinterpret known ones is proving insightful, and previously unrecorded sites are emerging. Coastal access points, shipwrecks and artefactual material are providing clues into this invisible past and while pinpointing the individual is proving difficult, identifying the pirate landscape in which they operated is slowly beginning to reveal itself.
Cite this Record
Pirates and Prostitutes - Seeking the invisible: Identifying the cultural footprint for illicit activity in early 17th-century Ireland. Connie Kelleher. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Leicester, England, U.K. 2013 ( tDAR id: 428635)
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min long: -10.463; min lat: 51.446 ; max long: -6.013; max lat: 55.38 ;