Your History Moment: Bloody, Bloody Mutiny

BLOODY MUTINY: the bloodiest mutiny in the history of the Royal Navy was the HMS Hermione, whose crew rebelled against their sadistic Captain Piggot in 1782. During nine months at sea,  he flogged half the crew, killing two in the process. The last straw came when he sent his men aloft in a gale, promising to flog the last man up, 3 men died in the attempt and he had them contemptuously had them tossed overboard.   His men overpowered and stabbed him in his sleep that night, killing him and 9 officers– tossing them overboard. The 210 sailors that remained aboard then turned the ship over to the Spanish at Venenzuela.

The Royal Navy was, to say the least, angered by this transgression, and spared no expense in tracking down the mutineers.  Of the original 210 sailors the Royal Navy eventually recaptured 33 of them.  Of those, 24 were hanged.  As a footnote, the Hermione was eventually cut out and recaptured  by the Royal Navy a decade later, and was renamed (appropriately) the HMS Retribution.

English: This is the White Ensign used by the ...

English: This is the White Ensign used by the Royal Navy of the Kingdom of Great Britain from 1707 until 1800. Updated version, more accurate. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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