The Majorcan Privateers and the Catalan Revolt of 1640

By Gonçal López Nada, published August 1983


The employment of licensed privateers to prey on enemy shipping was a well attested feature of naval warfare in the sixteenth and seventeeth centuries. Nadal tells of Majorcan corsairs refused privateering Letters of Marque but engaged as mercenaries helping Philip IV of Spain’s navy in the suppression of  the Catalan revolt of 1640-1659. Their roles were the transportation of Spanish troops and attacks on French ships supplying the rebels in pursuit of Cardinal Richelieu’s  promotion of a “war by diversion” against the Spanish during the “Thirty Years War”. The corsairs waited a long time for payment.

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Filed under: Other (Early Modern) | Mediterranean
Subjects include: Pirates, Corsairs & Privateers

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