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  • At the height of their power, infamous Caribbean pirates like Blackbeard and Henry Morgan commanded as many as ten ships and several hundred men.


  • But their stories pale next to the most successful pirate of all time.


  • Madame Zheng commanded 1800 vessels, made enemies of several empires, and still lived to old age.

    鄭夫人指揮 1800 艘船,與幾個帝國為敵,而且還能活到終老。

  • Madame Zheng began her life as a commoner working on one of the many floating brothels, or flower boats, in the port city of Guangzhou.


  • By 1801, she had attracted the attention of a local pirate captain named Zheng Yi, and the two soon married.

    到了 1801 年,她引起了一名叫鄭義的當地海盜船長,兩人很快便結了婚。

  • Guangzhou's fishermen had long engaged in small-scale piracy to supplement their meager incomes in the offseason.


  • But a successful peasant uprising in neighboring Vietnam at the end of the 18th century had raised the stakes.

    但是,到了 18 世紀末,鄰國越南成功的農民起義舉足輕重。

  • The victorious Tây Sơn rebels had unified their country only to face a Chinese invasion and ongoing maritime battles with the Vietnamese rulers they had overthrown.

    勝利的 Tây Sơn 叛軍將他們的國家統一起來只是為了面對中國的入侵以及與他們推翻的越南統治者的持續海戰。

  • So they commissioned Guangzhou's pirates to raid the coast and join the fight against their enemies.


  • Serving their Vietnamese patrons turned the Zhengs and other pirates from ragtag gangs aboard single vessels into professional privateer fleets with dozens of ships able to hold their own at sea.


  • In 1802, the Tây Sơn were overthrown and the pirates lost their safe harbor in Vietnam.

    1802 年,Tây Sơn 被推翻,而海盜們在越南失去了安全的港灣。

  • But instead of scattering, the Zhengs met the crisis by uniting the rival Cantonese pirate groups into a formidable alliance.


  • At its height, the confederation included 70,000 sailors with 800 large junks and nearly 1,000 smaller vessels.

    在其最鼎盛的時期,該聯盟有 7 萬名水手,有 800 艘大船和近千艘小型船舶。

  • Those were organized into six fleets marked by different colored flags.


  • The Zhengs were unlike many other historically-known privateers, such as Henry Morgan or Barbarossa, who acted on behalf of various naval powers.


  • Instead, the Zhengs were now true outlaws, operating without support or approval from any government.


  • Zheng Yi met an untimely end in 1807, but his widow didn't hesitate to secure their gains.

    1807 年,鄭義遭遇了不幸的結局,但他的寡婦並沒有猶豫接下他們的事業。

  • Through skillful diplomacy, Madame Zheng took charge of the confederation, convincing the captains that their best interests lay in continued collaboration.


  • Meanwhile, she appointed Zhang Bao, the young protege of her late husband, as the commander of her most powerful squadron, the Red Flag Fleet.


  • Zhang became not only her right-hand man, but her lover and, soon, her new husband.


  • Madame Zheng consolidated her power through strict military discipline combined with a surprisingly progressive code of laws.


  • Female captives were theoretically protected from sexual assault, and while pirates could take them as wives, mistreatment or infidelity towards them was punishable by death.


  • Under Madame Zheng's leadership, the pirates greatly increased their power, with 200 cannons and 1300 guns in the Red Flag Fleet alone.

    在鄭夫人的帶領下,海盜們的實力大增,光是紅旗艦隊就有 200 門大炮和 1300 門火炮。

  • Within a few years, they destroyed 63 of Guangdong Province's 135 military vessels, forcing their commanders to hire more than 30 private junks.

    在幾年內,他們摧毀了廣東省 135 艘軍艦中的 63 艘,迫使他們的指揮官僱傭 30 多艘私人軍艦。

  • Madame Zheng was so feared that Chinese commanders charged with apprehending her spent most of their time ashore, sometimes sabotaging their own vessels to avoid battle at sea.


  • With little to stop them, the pirates were able to mount successfuland often brutalraids on garrisons, villages, and markets throughout the coast.


  • Using her administrative talents,


  • Madame Zheng established financial offices in cities and villages, allowing her pirates to extract regular protection payments on land and sea alike.


  • This effectively created a state within a state whose influence reached far beyond the South China Sea.


  • At the peak of her power, Madame Zheng's confederation drove five American schooners to safe harbor near Macao, captured a Portuguese brig, and blockaded a tribute mission from Thailandall in a single day.


  • But perhaps Madame Zheng's greatest success lay in knowing when to quit.


  • By 1810, increasing tension between the Red and Black Flag Fleets weakened the confederation from within and rendered it more vulnerable to attack from without.

    到了 1810 年,紅旗艦隊和黑旗艦隊之間的關係日益緊張,內耗使其更容易受到來自外部的攻擊。

  • So, when the Chinese government, desperate to stop the raids, offered amnesty in exchange for the pirates' surrender, Madame Zheng and Zhang Bao agreed, but only on their own terms.


  • Their confederation was successfully and peacefully dismantled in April 1810, while Zhang Bao was allowed to retain 120 junks for personal use and became an officer in the Chinese navy.

    他們的聯盟在 1810 年 4月 被和平地成功解散,而張寶則被允許保留 120 艘軍艦自用,並成為中國海軍的一名軍官。

  • Now fighting pirates himself, Zhang Bao quickly rose through the ranks of military command, and Madame Zheng enjoyed all the privileges of her husband's status.


  • After Zhang Bao died in 1822,

    1822 年張寶去世後,

  • Madame Zheng returned with their eleven-year-old son to Guangzhou, where she opened a gambling house and quietly lived off the proceeds.


  • She died at the age of 69—an uncommonly peaceful end to a pirate's life.

    她以 69 歲的高齡去世,對一個海盜來說是不同尋常的平靜結局。

  • Want more history?


  • Check out this playlist with 5 of TED-Ed's most popular history videos.

    看看這個播放清單,裡面包含 TED-Ed 最受歡迎的 5 個歷史影片。

  • And if you want to help us continue to create videos like these, please consider making a small monthly contribution at

    如果你想幫助我們繼續製作此類影片,請考慮在 上進行每個月小額捐款。

At the height of their power, infamous Caribbean pirates like Blackbeard and Henry Morgan commanded as many as ten ships and several hundred men.


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B2 中高級 中文 美國腔 TED-Ed 海盜 夫人 艦隊 越南 指揮官

【TED-Ed】有史以來最成功的海盜 ... 原來是一位華人!(The most successful pirate of all time - Dian Murray)

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    Evangeline 發佈於 2021 年 04 月 07 日