Mary Read

Real Name

Mary Read





Historical Background

Mary Read was originally from England and served in the British military disguised as a man.When her navy ship was taken by pirates, Read was forced to join the crew of Captain Jack Rackham.

Rackham's crew also had a another female pirate who was named Anne Bonny. Bonny was initially attracted to Read thinking she was a handsome man. Captain Rackham became jealous of Read and threatened to kill her. This forced Read to reveal that she was in fact a woman. Once learning her secret though, Rackham allowed both women to remain on the crew.

In October 1720, Rackham's pirates were captured and taken to Jamaica, where they were convicted and sentenced by the Governor of Jamaica to be hung, but Read and Bonny both "pleaded their bellies": asking for mercy because they were pregnant so their execution was stalled. Read died in prison in April 1721 of fever associated with childbirth.

Public Domain Comic Appearances

  • Real Life Comics #44
  • Captain Kidd #24-25
  • Crimes By Women #13

Public Domain Literary Appearances


  • Bonny and Read are featured in Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean ride.

See Also


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