Maltese corsairs in Lampedusa
The most important island outside Maltese waters which was most frequented by the Maltese corsairs was Lampedusa. The kingdom of the Two Sicilies considered the island part of its dominions, but Malta also claimed to own this island. Documents which have been consulted have provided us with some useful insights on the presence of Maltese people on Lampedusa during the period 1775-1798.
Lampedusa was used for provisioning by numerous corsairs of the period. In 1792 Captain Valentini bought two and a half barrels of Venetian wine and three rams from the island’s local priest. This clergyman, Don Benigno Gauci, seems to have been very involved in the provisioning of corsair ships. On the 17th of May 1778 he provided cheese against payment to Captain German’s felucca; a month later, the priest once again sold some more cheese, beans, eggs, garlic and onions to German. The receipt for these provisions was signed by the pilot of German’s felucca, Matteo Micallef.