Teach was more famously known to us as the flamboyant and fearless Blackbeard the Pirate, who is said to have been born in Bristol and surprisingly known to be
'amiable, forgiving and generous.'
It wasn't until he was in his thirties that much is known of him, but it is more than likely that his early years were spent at sea as a mariner.
By 1716, Teach was known to be captaining a ship belonging to one Benjamin Hornigold, an English pirate who turned pirate hunter. The following year Hornigold and Teach went their separate ways, but Teach kept Hornigolds ship the Revenge. It was with this ship he attacked a French merchant vessel, La Concorde, which was carrying a cargo of slaves. Teach abandoned the Revenge replacing it with the La Concorde renaming her Queen Anne's Revenge. The following year, Teach attacked another merchant ship captained by Henry Bostock and it is from Bostock that we get the first description of Teach as a
"tall spare man with a very black beard which he wore very long"
it is from Bostock's account that Teach gets his name Blackbeard. Later descriptions say that his
'thick black beard was braided into pigtails, sometimes tied in with small coloured ribbons.'
Captain Jack Sparrow do you think?
Teaches reputation soon spread, and he used his new name to his advantage. He wore several pistols and cutlass at his waist and let his hair and his beard grow even longer, he was known to have put a lit, slow burning hemp cord under his hat so that would smoke and envelop him which added his menacing appearance.
Blackbeard has been portrayed many times in films, my favourite is the 1952 Blackbeard the Pirate where Teach is played by veteran actor Robert Newton. Blackbeards most recent apperance was in 2011 in the fourth film in the Pirates of the Caribbean series entitled, On Stranger Tides where Teach is played by Ian McShane.