On This Day: 17 July 1702

About this day in 1702 twenty-eight of the crew of Thomas Bowrey’s ship, the Prosperous, escaped from Madagascar in the sloop. Linnet. They had been put ashore at Madagascar after their captain and chief mate had been killed by pirates and the Prosperous taken.

The Linnet went first to Johanna in the Comoros Islands where five of the crew, including the third mate John Weber, decided to remain. The remaining twenty-three sailed on, arriving at Surat, India in September only to be suspected of piracy themselves. The East India Company Consul believed they were innocent but was unable to stop the Governor imprisoning them for almost six months.

They were only released because Surat came under attack and they were required to help defend the town.

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