Ching Shih was born in 1775 in the Guangdong province of China. She is widely regarded as the most successful pirate in history. Not much is known about her early life other than the year she was born and that her birth name was Shil Xiang Gu.
Ching Shih was a prostitute on a floating brothel until 1801 when she married a man named Cheng I, who came from a large pirating family. It is unclear if he married her because he loved her or as a power move, but either way she managed to get him to agree to give her a 50% share of his business during their marriage and leave her half of his fleet and his treasure if he chose to divorce her.
The couple adopted Cheung Po, a young man Cheng I had kidnapped, as their step-son and made him the heir to Cheng I’s…
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