Page:Devonshire Characters and Strange Events.djvu/289
THE PIRATES OF LUNDY
Worcester informs us, he was caught: how, he does not say, save that it was by surprise. "He was thrown into chains, and he and sixteen accomplices were condemned and sentenced to death. He was executed at the Tower on a gibbet with special ignominy, his body suspended in a sack, and when stiff in death, disembowelled, his bowels burnt, and his body divided into quarters."
After the execution of Sir William, his father, Geoffrey (or Jordan) fled to France, and the island was then seized by the King, who appointed to it governors. But in 1281 Lundy was again granted to a Marisco, Sir William, son of Jordan, another of the progeny of old Geoffrey. He died in 1284, and his son John in 1289, leaving Herbert as his son and heir. But Edward II granted the island to the elder Despenser, and Herbert was unable to obtain possession of it. He died in 1327, and from that date no more is heard of the Mariscoes in connexion with the island.
From their time, however, other pirates obtained a footing on it. In the days of Henry VIII a gang of French pirates, under their captain, De Valle, seized Lundy and waylaid the Bristol traders, but the Clovelly fishermen made an expedition against them, burnt their ship, and killed or made prisoners of the whole gang.
A few years later, Lord Seymour, High Admiral of England, uncle of Edward VI, was charged, among other misdemeanours, with trying to get hold of Lundy, "being aided with shipps and conspiring at all evill eventes with pirates, (so that) he might at all tymes have a sure and saufe refuge, if anything for his demerites should have been attempted against him." He was executed, having refused to answer the charges made against him.