Go over the plank
Walk the plank (also Plank Walk ) was an execution form on pirate ships .
The convict was handcuffed and placed on a plank that was attached to the railing so that it protruded from the ship to the sea . The convict was then forced with a spear to go to the end of the plank, where he fell into the water and mostly drowned .
This form of execution is part of the pirate legend, but was rarely used. Usually pirates simply threw their prisoners overboard. However, individual cases are documented:
- The privateer Marten Pechlin (1450–1526) was said to have killed 105 sailors in one day in this way.
- In 1769 the mutineer George Wood confessed in Newgate Prison that he and his co-conspirators had forced their officers to go over the plank.
- The Times reported on February 14, 1829 that the Redpole was seized and sunkby the pirate beautiful President . The commander was shot and the crew forced to go over the plank.
- In 1829 pirates intercepted the Dutch brig Vhan Fredericka in a strait in the Virgin Islands and murdered most of the crew by forcing them to walk over the plank with a cannonball tied to their feet. (see: Linschoten-Vereeniging )
- Douglas Botting, The Pirates , TimeLife Books, 1978, p. 58.
- The Times , Feb.14, 1829, p. 3.
- David Cordingly. Under the Black Flag: The Romance and Reality of Life Among the Pirates, Harvest Books, 1997, pp. 130-31.