Bartholomew Roberts, referred to as the " Great Pirate Roberts", roamed the seas in the early eighteenth century. He traveled the coasts of North and South America. His reputation had grown so immense that guard ships stationed in the West Indies were reluctant to get involved with him, and even seemed to sail out of their way to avoid confrontation.
Roberts was known as a tall, dark, and attractive man, with "personal Bravery, though he applied it to such wicked purposes". He was a popinjay among his fellow pirates dressing in rich crimson waistcoat, and breeches, a hat with a red feather, and a diamond cross hanging from a golden chain around his neck. In time of action, he was known to carry two pairs of pistols at the end of a silk sling across his shoulder.
;His boldness was reflected in his reliance on the unusual, relying on the both surprising and awesome. For example he was recalled to have sailed into Trepassey in Newfoundland, in a sloop of ten guns manned by sixty men, with "black colors flying, drums beating and trumpets sounding." The crews of the twenty-two ships in anchor in the harbor, immediately withdrew from the site and fled to safety off shore.
Roberts held so much hatred for the people of the islands of Martinique and Barbados, that he created his black flag to illustrate it. On it was an image of himself holding a flaming sword in one hand, and dagger in the other. His feet resting on two human skulls. Under one the initials A.M.H., for A Marinican’s Head, and beneath the other, A.B.H., for A Barbadian Head.
Roberts career came to an end when he was killed at sea in a conflict off the coast of Africa.