medievalpoc:

bead-bead:

snubbingapollo:

houndsheart:

snubbingapollo:

So, your queer history lesson for the day:

Everyone’s heard that pirate’s call each other “matey”. What you probably haven’t heard is that the word matey comes from “matelote”.

In the Caribbean this word was used between buccaneers to signify a life partner. Matelotes could inherit from each other, shared space, fought together, could speak for each other when one was incapacitated or absent, and more often than not the relationship was romantic and sexual.

That’s right folks. Pirates had a term for their gay life partners.

In light of this, I present to you a new alternative for significant other and partner. Bring back matelote.

(You can learn more about the practice of matelotage in: The Origins and Role of Same-Sex Relations in Human Societies by James Niell)

Arrr! Matelotage was such a great idea!

In an age when the English Navy ran on “rum, sodomy and the lash,” (as noted in many writings of the time), homosexual relationships were punishable by death.

The result here was that in the English Navy, relationships went underground. Very often, they became forced, often between a superior and a subordinate. When English crews went on the account, becoming pirates, they looked for a way to legitimize relationships of honest affection.
Matelotage [French; meaning ‘seamanship’] , now used as an English word, became a term for a legal marriage between two men.

[…]

In pirate society (and only pirate society) two men could “marry.” They would exchange gold rings, and pledge eternal union. After this, they were expected to share everything.  Plunder and living spaces were obvious, but couples in matelotage were also known to share other property, and even women. If one of the partners was killed in action, pirate captains were careful to make sure that the surviving member received both shares of plunder, as well as any appropriate death benefits.

Simply put, homosexual relationships had been kept under wraps by people in fear for their lives because of draconian laws. Among sailors who had practiced this form of release themselves, it lost its sense of being alien, and so became accepted and legitimized as soon as they (by turning pirate) gained the right to make their own laws. {X}

Another excellent addition!

What if we learned all these things growing up? What if experts on different aspects of history wrote a history book together. What if the editor ensured that POC, women LGBTQA and other minorities’ histories weren’t erased.

I am all for specialization. I follow blogs that show me history and the modern world from different perspectives.

Because my sixteen years of education are incomplete. Woefully incomplete.

I’d like to add that for the most part, these aren’t “separate” histories! Relevant MPoC tags and searches for this topic include:

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