Batavia's Graveyard: The True Story of the Mad Heretic Who Led History's Bloodiest Meeting

Batavia's Graveyard: The True Story of the Mad Heretic Who Led History's Bloodiest Meeting

by Mike Dash
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Batavia's Graveyard: The True Story Of The Mad Heretic Who Led History's Bloodiest Mutiny 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
'Batavia's Graveyard' is a remarkable book about one of the most extraordinary and tragic mutinies in history. What makes this particular story so tragic is that the mutineers are men of particular savagery- they not only kill potential threats, they also kill for pleasure, for revenge, and out of boredom. After Jeronimus's men secure their island, they next plot to kill the settlers on the other islands, turning what was originally a cruel mutiny into a sad and obscene civil war. The book reaches its climax during the battle between the mutineers and the inhabitants of the last island of settlers to be attacked. Competently led by Wiebbe Hayes, a soldier aboard the Batavia, this last group has to fight with makeshift weapons against a group of well-armed mutineers intent on killing them to the last man. The author of 'Batavia's Graveyard', Mike Dash, not only gives a readable and engrossing account of the survivors' ordeal, but he does an excellent job of placing the events within its historical context. I was fascinated by the description of life in the Dutch Republic of the early 1600's, sobered by the risks and difficulties that sea voyages of the time entailed, and absorbed by the history of the V.O.C. (Dutch East India Company). Finally, I was horrified and saddened by the events that took place on the islets once the mutiny was in full swing. The ordeal of Wiebbe Hayes's troops in attempting to repulse Jeronimus's attacks added to the complexity of the story and gave me some hope for some of the survivors. The style of writing was such that I felt like a participant to the action, and Mr. Dash did this without sacrificing historical accuracy. 'Batavia's Graveyard' is one of the best history books I've read in quite a while, and I highly recommend it to anyone who likes history, or just a good dramatic tale.
KristinAZ More than 1 year ago
I loved this!!!!! Puts real problems into perspective!
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