Privateer Wine Glass The Duke Of Cornwall c1760


Product Code:BON39

Out of stock

Out of stock


Heading : Privateer Wine Glass For The Duke Of Cornwall
Period : George II- George III
Origin : England
Colour : Clear. light grey tone
Bowl : Round funnel
Stem :Opaque twist corkscrew
Foot : Conical
Pontil : Snapped
Glass Type : Lead
Size : Height 15.4cm. bowl 5.2. foot 6.7
Condition : An 8mm x 3mm crescent shaped flake chip that descends from the upper foot to the foor string at a 40 degree angle
Restoration : None
Weight: 137g

Purchased at Bonhams 15th November 2023 Lot 39. Ex-Durrington Collection.

Jim Peake of Bonhams has provided a comprehensive description and provenance for this glass. We would like to add a little more colour about the Privateers and some of those who originated from Bristol and to make sure that we distinguish between Privateers and Pirates.

The Privateers carried out their activities with full approval from the crown. Each was provided with. ‘letter of marque’. giving them the authority to act on behalf of the crown. Some of these were letters of marque were provided by the Corporation of Bristol and members of the aristocracy with regional powers. The letter would specify the nationality of ships that were permitted to be raided or preferebly captured and the regions in which the Privateer was to operate.

The Scot. Captain William Kidd received his letters of Marque one from Richard Coote. the 1st Earl Bellomont and governor of New York and was sanctioned to protect British interests in North America and the Caribbean. It is known that Coote himself was to benefit from the activities of Kidd. he was an investor. Kidd was very succesful but when he failed to hand over a captured ship he was declared a Pirate. Kidd “lost” his letters of Marque and Bellomont in fear of being implicated had him returned to England where he was hung and then gibbeted at Tilbury point and left for some four years.

Kidd’s letter of Marque has been misplaced and resurfaced a little more than two hundred years later. proving that Kidd was a privateer and not a Pirate.

The Privateers were effectively a privately sponsored extension of the Royal Navy whose crews were also rewarded with prize or bounty money from captured vesels and associated plunder. For Bonhams to describe Privateers as officially sanctioned Pirates is a slur on the Royal Navy itself.

Edward Teach ( or Thatch) aka Blackbeard did originate from the Bristol area and did not have any letter of Marque and was simply both indiscriminate and brutal. he was a Pirate. For further reading on this fascinating aspect of British maritime history please see the refenence below.

Reference: Bristol Privateers and Ships of War – Commander J Damer Powell




Additional information

Weight250 g


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