Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Evidence supporting claims pirated Australian ship visited Japan unearthed

In Australian convict pirates in Japan: evidence of 1830 voyage unearthed Joshua Robertson reports on evidence confirming the visit of a ship from Australia to Japan in 1830. The ship had been hijacked by convicts being transported from Hobart to Macquarie Harbour.

An amateur historian has unearthed compelling evidence that the first Australian maritime foray into Japanese waters was by convict pirates on an audacious escape from Tasmania almost two centuries ago.

Fresh translations of samurai accounts of a “barbarian” ship in 1830 give startling corroboration to a story modern scholars had long dismissed as convict fantasy: that a ragtag crew of criminals encountered a forbidden Japan at the height of its feudal isolation.

The brig Cyprus was hijacked by convicts bound from Hobart to Macquarie Harbour in 1829, in a mutiny that took them all the way to China.

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