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"Recruits. Liberated slaves. The warriors among them join me. The others grow the community for which we fight. (Little by little, bird builds his nest.)"
―Augustin Dieufort to the Assassin Adéwalé on the Maroons, 1735.[src]-[m]

The Maroons were people who escaped slavery in the Americas and formed their own settlements away from their oppressors.[1]

Maroons in Haiti

In Saint-Domingue, most of the African slaves fled to the Montagnes Noires, a range of mountains in the central part of western Hispaniola,[2] following the Taíno tribes who had done the same before them, fleeing abuse from the Spanish Empire's colonies.[1] The mountains made it extremely difficult for any surprise attacks from oppressors, and the high altitude was ideal for lookouts.[2]

Their lives were often based on subsistence agriculture and survival hunting, while the warriors among them fought for independence and the freedom of other slaves. To this effect they would terrorize plantation owners and overseers, razing crops, looting and conducting raids on sugar and coffee plantations. The former slave owners retaliated brutally, with the Code Noir on their side: plantation slaves were killed, many of the attackers slaughtered, and the death penalty was a common form of punishment.[1]

Though numerous, they were not the only black population in Saint-Domingue at the time, as the island also included both Freedmen, slaves who were freed legally through emancipation or manumission, and Gens de Couleur, those who were born free or freed at birth.[1]

Sometime prior to 1735, a Maroon movement in Saint-Domingue was established, led principally by Augustin Dieufort and supported by Bastienne Josèphe. On the years following 1735, the rebellion grew in strength and power aided by Adéwalé, a member of the West Indies Brotherhood of Assassins.[3] Liberated slaves from both the slave ships and those sugar plantations attacked by the Assassin joined the rebellion,[4] though a confrontation with the Governor of Port-au-Prince, Pierre de Fayet, would put an end to this alliance, with Adéwalé leaving Port-au-Prince after assassinating de Fayet in 1737.[5] An attempt at freeing the slaves in Saint-Domingue by poisoning the white colonists led to Maroon leader François Mackandal's execution in 1758.[6]

The Maroons and their Assassin allies in Saint-Domingue ultimately managed a successful slave uprising, the only one to result in the founding of a free state after a century of effort and more than one attempt. Starting in 1791, with the Vodou ceremony at Bois Caïman led by Dutty Boukman and calling for a major rebellion.[7] By early 1801, Maroon Toussaint Louverture declared himself absolute ruler of the island and freed all slaves.[8] Though interference by French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte, by way of his brother-in-law Charles Leclerc, deposed him,[9] Louverture's lieutenant Jean-Jacques Dessalines ousted the French from the island, bringing the Revolution to a successful conclusion.[10]

Maroons in Jamaica

Antó, an enslaved Ashanti man in Jamaica escaped with the help of the legendary warrior Kujo. Later, he founded a Maroon community near Kingston, where he ran an Assassin bureau, and established contacts with indigenous traders, who helped coordinate raids on plantations that freed more slaves to join him.[11][12] In 1716, the Welsh pirate Edward Kenway helped Antó liberate other Maroons from Templar captivity.[13]

Appearances

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagFreedom CryDatabase: Maroons
  2. 2.0 2.1 Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagFreedom CryDatabase: Montagnes Noires
  3. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag – Freedom CryA Common Enemy
  4. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag – Freedom CryLaying the First Brick
  5. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag – Freedom CryDe Fayet's Last Stand
  6. Assassin's Creed III: LiberationDatabase: Agaté
  7. Assassin's Creed: InitiatesEseosa's Codex – Entry #5: "Ceremony at Bois Caïman: Bois Caïman, Saint-Domingue, 1791-08-14"
  8. Assassin's Creed: Initiates – Eseosa's Codex – Entry #9: "Absolute Ruler of Saint-Domingue: Cap Français, Saint-Domingue, 1801-07-08"
  9. Assassin's Creed: Initiates – Eseosa's Codex – Entry #10: "Leclerc's Expedition: Cap Français, Saint-Domingue, 1802"
  10. Assassin's Creed: Initiates – Eseosa's Codex – Entry #12: "What Price Freedom: Davenport Manor, British America, 1804-03-01"
  11. Assassin's Creed: InitiatesDatabase: The Maroon Assassin
  12. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagDatabase: Antó
  13. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagRecruiting Maroons

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