Cheng Shih was a pirate mogul in the 1800's. She amassed 2,000 ships and 50,000 crew members. I love doing research for my books. In #Komodo Dragon I knew that I wanted a #pirate so I searched for the most famous pirates. In 1801 this former prostitute with a reputation for being a shrewd business woman, married a man who was building a pirate fleet known as the #Red Flag Fleet. In 1806 her husband died and she took over.
Her fleet was so large and powerful that she remained undefeated by the Chinese, Portuguese and East India Company fleets.
She developed a code of ethics to manage her large group of roughians.
At the end of her life, dying at age 69, she controlled the seas from Hong Kong to Vietnam.
In addition to my character Zeng from the 2nd book in my #Sir William & Mac series she also inspired a character from #The Pirates of the Caribbean, Mistress Ching.
Another interesting fact-- she always ate testicles for breakfast. I think that sent a very strong message.