Last Updated on May 10, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 173
Tom Cringle, a young man, determined to distinguish himself, who joins the British navy at the age of thirteen. He has many adventures and sees much action on various ships. Eventually, he is promoted to lieutenant and then commander as a reward for his bravery and attention to duty. At the age of twenty-three, he is master of his own ship and a much-trusted officer.
Mary Palma, Cringle’s cousin, whom he marries after his promotion to commander.
Obadiah (oh-buh-DI-uh), a pirate responsible for taking Cringle to the lagoon that is the secret lair of the West Indian pirates. When the pirate band is captured, he tries to swim away and is shot.
Captain Transom, the genial commander of Firebrand, an English warship. He has many friends in the islands and takes Cringle to many jolly parties ashore.
Francesco Cangrejo (frahn-SEHS-koh kahn-GREH-hoh), a handsome Spanish pirate. Sentenced to death, he gives Tom a miniature and a crucifix to deliver to his betrothed.