On This Day

Piet Heyn

Dutch Admiral and Privateer Piet Heyn

Full Name: Pieter Pieterszoon Hein
Profession: Dutch Admiral and Privateer

Nationality:
Netherlands
Dutch

Why Famous: Captured a Spanish treasure fleet in 1628 with 4,000,000 ducats of gold and silver. An amount so large it increased the price of silver worldwide and almost bankrupted the Spanish Empire.

Born: November 25, 1577
Birthplace: Delfshaven, County of Holland, Holy Roman Empire
Star Sign: Sagittarius

Died: June 18, 1629 (aged 51)
Cause of Death: Hit in the left shoulder by a cannonball and killed instantly during a skirmish with privateers near Dunkirk

Historical Events

  • 1624-05-10 Dutch admirals Jacob Willekens and Piet Heyn conquer Salvador da Bahia (Brazil)
  • 1627-03-03 Dutch privateer Piet Heyn attacks and conquers 22 Portuguese ships in Bay of Salvador, Brazil
  • 1627-06-10 Dutch privateer Piet Heyn attacks Portuguese ships in the Bay of All Saints, Brazil
  • 1628-09-08 Dutch privateer Piet Heyn captures Spanish silver fleet in the Bay of Matanzas, Cuba
  • 1629-06-18 Sea battle at Dungeness: Piet Heyn beats the Dunkirkers, commerce raiders in the service of the Spanish Monarchy

Biographies and Sources