Cyprus, brig of 108 tons, first arrived at Hobart from London in 1825 and was purchased by the Van Diemen's Land government as a tender to the Macquarie Harbour settlement, being extensively rebuilt there in 18271828. On 9 August 1829 the vessel was sheltering at Recherche Bay when convicts on board mutinied, put the crew and guards ashore, and escaped. After an epic journey in a small boat, two of the castaways managed to secure the rescue of the remainder. Disguised as the Friends of Boston, the Cyprus called into New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and Japan before being scuttled in the China Sea. Several of the mutineers returned to England, where they were recaptured and returned to Van Diemen's Land.

Further reading: F Clune & P Stephenson, The pirates of the brig Cyprus, New York, 1963.

Graeme Broxam