There Be Pirates
It wasn’t so easy being a pirate especially in the middle ages and after; if you wanted to become one, you’d have to make an extreme effort in finding them and begging them to accept you since there was no map saying “There be pirates“, so you just go there and chit-chat with them. It was a complexed subculture in every society. They had their own maner of speech, their codes… In their codes or codex, there were rules about the ship crew – their duties and rights, ways of division of the fortune they loot, what kind of behavior is untorelable and punishable… Here’s an example from one code, for excample – “If any man shall offer to run away, or keep any secret from the Company, he shall be marroon’d with one bottle of powder, one bottle of Water, one small Arm, and shot.” (from the pirate ship called Revenge). I guess there are not many people who still haven’t seen any part of “Pirates of the Caribbean“, so you know some basics, but when you do an extra research, you’ll find that the producer and director of the movies did it too. What I’m saying is that they didn’t invent the whole pirate-world story. Lots of the things that we can see in the movies were once true. For example the saying ‘parley’ Elizabeth (Keira Knightly) often uses was a real rule, it was used to stop fighting between two opposide sides or two groups of pirates and to talk about the problem.
Its use in the movie is the same. Their ships evolved in time, but they used to have a well-known black flag with a skull on it. And, yeah, there’s another thing from the movie that also existed but in the movie is kinda misused. The black spot, in Pirates of the Caribbean, Jack Sparrow has a black spot on the palm as a mark of his debt to Davy Jones. In real pirate world it was a mark on a scrap of paper, on which was written the cause why a pirate should be killed, usually for a debt.
And speaking of Davy Jones, in fact it is not certain whether he was a real character. There is an assumption that there was a pirate named Davy Jones who lived and was robbing in 1630’s but he was nothing special in the pirate world to gain the glory like he has in Pirates of the Caribbean, where he’s the immortal captain of the Flying Dutchman , a legendary ghost ship (legend originates in 18th century). Some claim that he actually was a pub owner who was the only one to allow pirates inside. Another theory says that it was the name for an evil spirit of the sea – adopted biblical story of Jonah where he was thrown overboard. The legend name was “Devil Jonah” which probably was misheard as Davy Jones, and according to this belief the people who die at sea go to Davy Jones’ locker – meaning sea bottom.
And a little joke on the subject from SpongeBob
There is a resemblance between legends and the movie, but we’ll never know for sure. Well, finally some real facts on pirates – the most famous pirates of all times were:
The most fearsome pirate ever, whose real name was Edward Drummond and who lived in 17th century England.
The well known and the best female pirate ever. She was connected with pirates Mary Read (also interesting female pirate) and Captain Jack Rackham (she made him famous). Her story might have been an inspiration for Elizabeth’s character. She was growing up without a mother and married poorly, despite having a good offer by Captain Rackham. So, after a hard time, her and her husband James Bonny turned to piracy. See the resemblance? And she met Mary Read along the way, as Mary was disguised as an English soldier. Certainly two completely unusual women.