The Sea Beggars
Year of publication:
In Antwerp, the inquisition causes a complete exodus of well-to-do citizens. Their money, trade, and employment leaves with them. Combined with the heavy taxes (the so-called ‘10e penning’, a 10% tax on sales) those who stay behind are doomed to poverty and dejection.
Some refugees organize themselves as the Sea Beggars and engage in privateering. Thanks to William of Orange’s “letters of marque and reprisal” they are at liberty to raid Spanish merchant vessels. Hungry and homesick, they are forced to dock at Den Briel.