The real Mary Read (1690-1721) was an English pirate who sailed with Calico Jack Rackham from 1718 to 1720. She was born illegitimate, so her mother disguised her as a boy after the death of Mary's legitimate brother, in order to continue to receive financial support. She continued the practice throughout her life. She and Anne Bonny are two of the most famed female pirates of all time; they are the only two women known to have been convicted of piracy during the early 18th century. She was spared hanging because she was pregnant but died shortly after that due to a fever.