- Pirates in popular culture
In American and British popular culture, the modern pirate stereotype owes its tradition mostly to depictions of
Captain Hookand his crew in theatrical and film versions of " Peter Pan", Robert Newton's portrayal of Long John Silverin the film " Treasure Island", and various adaptations of " Sinbad the Sailor". Pirates have retained their image through pirate-themed tourist attractions, traditional film and toy portrayals of pirates, and the continued performance and reading of books and plays featuring pirates.
Appearance and mannerisms
In films, books, cartoons, and toys, pirates often have an unrefined appearance and symbolizes the rogue personality and adventurous, seafaring lifestyle. They are often shown wearing
17th Centuryclothing, with a bandanaor a feathered tricorne. They sometimes have an eye patch and almost always have a cutlassand a flintlockpistol, or some other swords and guns. They sometimes have scars and battle wounds, rotten or missing teeth (suggesting the effects of scurvy), as well as a hook or wooden stump where a hand or leg has been amputated. Some depictions of pirates also include monkeys or parrots as pets.
Stereotypical pirate accents tend to resemble accents either from
Cornwallor Bristol, though they can also be based on Elizabethan eraEnglish or other parts of the world. Pirates in film, television and theatre are generally depicted as speaking English in a particular accent and speech pattern that sounds like a cross between a West country accentand an old English accent, similar to that of Robert Newton's performance as Long John Silverin the 1950 film "Treasure Island"; however, the characteristic speech patterns of fictional pirates appear to pre-date Newton's performance, for example in J. Warren Kerrigan's Irish-accented performance as Peter Blood in the 1924 film "Captain Blood".Verify source|date=May 2007 One of the stereotypical features of a pirate, the eye patch, dates back to the Arabpirate Rahmah ibn Jabir al-Jalahimahwho wore it after losing an eye in battle in the 18th century.
Historical pirates were often sailors or soldiers who'd fallen into misfortune, forced to serve at sea or to plunder goods and ships in order to survive. Depending on the moral and social context of a piece of pirate literature, the pirate characters in that piece may be represented as having fallen, perhaps resembling a "respectable" person in some way. [http://www.literarytraveler.com/authors/captain_hook.aspx The Real Life and Fictional Characters Who Inspired J.M. Barrie's Captain Hook] Alternately, they may be truly corrupt and evil (e.g. Captain Barbossa). Pirates generally quest for
buried treasure, which is often stored, after being plundered, in treasure chests. Pirate's treasure is usually gold, often in the form of Doubloonsor Pieces of Eight.
Space pirates are
science fictioncharacter archetypes who operate in outer space, rather than sailing the sea. As traditional seafaring pirates target sailing ships, space pirates capture and plunder spaceshipsfor cargo, money, and occasionally they steal the ship itself. However, their dress and speech corresponds to the particular author's vision of the future.
In the 1990s,
International Talk Like a Pirate Daywas invented as a parody holiday celebrated on September 19. This holiday allows people to "let out their inner pirate" and to dress and speak as pirates are stereotypically portrayed to have dressed and spoken. International Talk Like a Pirate Day has been gaining popularity through the Internet since its founders set up a [http://www.talklikeapirate.com/ website] , which instructs visitors in "pirate slang."
In the online community, many games, movies, and other media are built upon the premise, thought to have been generated by
Real Ultimate Power, that pirates (in the Caribbean buccaneer sense) and ninjas are sworn enemies. The " Pirates versus Ninjas" meme is expressed offline too, through house parties and merchandise found at popular-culture clothing and gift stores.
Pirates also play a central role in the
parody religionof Pastafarianism. Established in 2005, [ [http://www.venganza.org/ Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster ] ] Pastafarians (members of The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster) believe that global warming is a result of the severe decrease in pirates.
Pirates in the arts
In 1879 the
comic opera, " The Pirates of Penzance", was an instant hit in New York, and the original London production in 1880 ran for 363 performances. [http://www.hcs.harvard.edu/hrgsp/old/productions/pir00/pir00hist.htm harvard.edu] The piece, depicting an incompetent band of "tenderhearted" British pirates, is still performed widely today, and obviously corresponds to historical knowledge about the emergency of piracy in the Caribbean.
J.M. Barrie's play " Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up" was first performed. In the book, Peter's enemy in Neverland is the pirate crew led by Captain Hook. Details on Barrie's conception of Captain Hook are lacking, but it seems he was inspired by at least one historical privateer, and possibly by Robert Louis Stevenson's Long John Silveras well. [http://www.literarytraveler.com/authors/captain_hook.aspx The Real Life and Fictional Characters Who Inspired J.M. Barrie's Captain Hook] In film adaptations released in 1924, 1953, and 2003, Hook's dress, as well as the attire of his crew, corresponds to stereotypical notions of pirate appearance.
Il pirata" (The Pirate) is an operaby Vincenzo Bellini, 1827
The Pirates of Penzance", a comic operettaby Gilbert and Sullivancontains a Pirate King and a crew of orphanpirates.
Pirates of the Mediterraneanis a play done in Malta parodying various classical stories.
Peter Pan was first a book and was adapted many times including the widely known Disney version. Peter and the Starcatchers is a book written by Ridley Pearson. Ridley has written two other sequels to Peter and The Starcatchers (Captain Hook is given a different name in these books). PeterPan was made into a broadway play in the late 1900s. The play is now closed, but the story is still popular. It was made into a ride at the Disney World Resort in Florida. Captain Hook is the villan in Peter Pan and is one of the most commonly known pirates to date. The movie "Hook" was a sequel to Peter Pan made in the 1990s. Disney made its own sequel to Peter pan a few years ago called "Peter Pan in Return to Neverland" Tinkerbell, Peter's beloved fairy sidekick now has her own book series and a movie called "Tinkerbell" coming to DVD and Blu-Ray late 2008.
The 1950 film adaption of "
Treasure Island", as well as the 1954 sequel "Long John Silver" starred Robert Newton, and is considered highly influential on the modern perception of early pirates. [cite web|last=Bonanos |first=Christopher |title=Did Pirates Really Say "Arrrr"? The origin of Hollywood's high-seas slang. |work=Slate |date=2007-06-05 |publisher=Washington Post Newsweek Interactive Co |url=http://www.slate.com/id/2167567 |accessdate=2008-03-23]
The Black Pirate", a 1926 film starring Douglas Fairbanks.
*"Captain Blood", a 1935 film starring
*"The Sea Hawk", a 1940 film starring
*"The Black Swan", a 1942 film starring
Tyrone Power, Maureen O'Hara, and Anthony Quinn.
Anne of the Indies", a 1951 adventure film loosely based on the life of Anne Bonny( Jean Peters) with Louis Jourdanand Thomas Gomezas Blackbeard.
The Crimson Pirate", a 1952 adventure film, starring Burt Lancaster.
*The animated films of Japanese director
Leiji Matsumotoinclude several pirate characters, including Captain Harlockand Queen Emeraldas, the best known of these pieces being Galaxy Express 999( 1977) and Space Battleship Yamato( 1974).
Piraty XX veka", a 1979 Soviet adventure filmabout modern piracy.
* "The Island" (1980), a film based on
Peter Benchley's novel.
The Pirate Movie" (1982), an Australianfilm loosely based on "The Pirates of Penzance", stars Christopher Atkinsand Kristy McNichol.
Nate and Hayes", a 1983 film based on the adventures of the notorious Bully Hayes, a pirate in the South Pacific in the late 19th Century. Also known as "Savage Islands".
Yellowbeard" A 1983 film starring Graham Chapmanas Yellowbeard the pirate
*"Pirates", a 1986
Roman Polanskicomic/adventure film starring Walter Matthau.
The Princess Bride" A 1987 film adaptation of the William Goldmannovel that has "The Dread Pirate Roberts" as one of its central characters.
Cutthroat Island", a 1995 Renny Harlinfilm that was a notable flop, starring Geena Davis
* In "
Shakespeare in Love" (1998) Shakespeare has writer's block. Eventually he decides to write "Romeo and Ethel The Pirate's Daughter"
*' (2003), ' (2006) and "" (2007), movies based on the popular
Disneylandattraction, "Pirates of the Caribbean."
Captain Pugwash" a series of British children's animated television programmes, comic strips and books, first shown on the BBC in 1957.
TaleSpin" (1990) featured the air pirate Don Karnagewho always tried to steal goods and sometimes treasures from Baloo.
The Pirates of Dark Water" is a Hanna-Barbera animated seriesof the 1990s.
* The singing and dancing pirates Nasty Max, Mighty Matt, Massmedia and Sleazeappeal from the
animated series" Spartakus and the Sun Beneath the Sea".
*"Pirates" was a 1994 children's sitcom about a family of pirates living in a council house.
Black Lagoon" is a 2006 animeabout pirates in the South China Sea. It is a somewhat realistic look at the underlying themes of modern day piracy.
One Piece" (1999 onwards), the animated adaptation of the Japanese comic of the same name (see below).
* The animated series
SpongeBob SquarePants' theme song is sung by Painty the Pirate, voiced by Pat Pinney. Certain episodes are also introduced by Patchy the Pirate, portrayed by Tom Kenny, the voice of SpongeBob SquarePants. Also in some of the Spongebob episodes there is a character called The Flying Dutchman who is a pirate ghost.
* In "
Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!", they faced the ghost of Redbeard.
The Pirate" is a novel by Sir Walter Scott
* Byron's poem "
The Corsair" (1814) concerns a pirate captain. It directly inspired Berlioz' overture "Le Corsair" (1844). A similar tale of pirates and slaves is Tim Severin's novel "Corsair" (2007).
Treasure Island" (1883) is the novel by Robert Louis Stevenson.
Peter Benchley's 1979 novel "The Island", and the 1980 movie adaptation for which he wrote the screenplay, feature a latter-day band of pirates who prey on civilian shipping in the Caribbean.
The Dealings of Captain Sharkey and other tales of piratesWas a 1922 novel written by Sir Arthur Conan Doylefamous for his stories of Sherlock Holmes.
The Princess Bride" A 1973 novel written by William Goldmanthat has "The Dread Pirate Roberts" as one of its central characters.
The Pirates! in an Adventure with Scientists" (2004) by Gideon Defoeis a surreal adventure with stereotypical pirates and Charles Darwin. Featuring The Pirate With A Scarf. Defoe has written subsequent books involving the same pirate crew and their anachronistic, absurd adventures.
Bloody Jack" is a historical novel by L.A. Meyer
Sandokan" is a series of pirate novels by Emilio Salgari.
The Piratica Series", a series of pirate novels by Tanith Leepublished in 2004, 2006, and 2007.
Sea Witch" a pirate novel for adults by Helen Hollickpublished in 2006 by DA Diamonds. UK High sea adventure with a touch of fantasy and a dash of romance!
Ragnar Danneskjöld" is a fictional pirate in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged, whose activities are motivated by radical pro-capitalist ideology.
The Government Manual for New Pirates" is a book written to all folks young and old seeking to become a pirate written and unveiling all aspects of the life it brings by Matthew David Brozikand Jacob Sager Weinstein
Comics and Manga
* "Terry and the Pirates" (1934-1973) by
Milton Caniffis an adventure comic stripfrequently set among modern-day pirates of Chinaand Southeast Asia, led by the notorious Dragon Lady.
* "" (1994) and
Elseworldscomic by Chuck Dixonfeaturing Batmanas a pirate.
The Red Seas" (2002 onwards), a mix of pirates and strange phenomena by Ian Edgintonand Steve Yeowell.
One Piece" (1997-onwards), set in a fictional world where piracy is at its height, the World Government and its Navy attempt to put it to a stop, and one young man desires to become the next Pirate King. One of the most popular mangato date in Japan.
Outlaw Star" , the primary antagonists of the series are members of the Pirate's Guild, a large network of space pirate clans throughout the universe.
Watchmen" features a comic-book inside the comics named "Tales of the Black Freighter". The "Watchmen" comic-book claims that in a world where super-heroes are alive and known, then instead of comics dealing with super-heroes, more comics dealing with pirates would be written.
* "Sea Monsters" (2006-) by
Gwendolyn Meeris an action/adventure and comedy webcomic starring infamous pirates Anne Bonny, Mary Read, and Calico Jack Rackham (among others) as modern-day pirates in the Mediterranean area.
Pirates in music
* Pop stars have long been drawn towards pirate culture, due to its disestablishmentism and motley dress. An early 1960s British pop group called itself
Johnny Kidd and the Pirates, and wore eye patches while they performed. Keith Moon, drummer of The Who, was a fan of Robert Newton. Flogging Molly, The Briggs, Dropkick Murphys, The LeperKhanz, The Coral, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, Bullets And Octane, Mad Caddies, The Vandals, Gnarkill, Armored Saint, Jimmy Buffett, and Stephen Malkmushave pirate-themed songs as well.
* Easily the most elaborate example of songs in this Rock sub genre is "Pirates" by
Emerson, Lake & Palmera massive, 13 minute long performance piece from their 1977 tour, it features the Orchestra de L'Opera de Paris. The piece can be found on the album "Works, volume 1"
* German metal band Running Wild adopted a "
pirate metal" image in 1987, with its third album.. The Texas punk group Employer, Employeewas considered "pirate rock" by its fans, as its lyrics often contained themes of piracy ("One Count of Mutiny"), as well as the 16th-century New World in general.
Sex Pistolsadapted the saucy song "Good Ship Venus" as their hit "Friggin' in the Rigging". Fellow Malcolm McLarenprotegée Adam Anttook the pirate image further. One of the tracks on the album "Kings of the Wild Frontier" was called "Jolly Roger".
* In 1986,
The Beastie Boyspaid homage to the pirate lifestyle on their " Licensed to Ill" album with the song "Rhymin' and Stealin'". The song is filled with piratical and nautical phrasing liberally mixed with 1980s hip-hop references.
* Mutiny is an Australian pirate themed
folk-punkband with releases on Fistolo Records.
* Pirate imagery has also been adopted by many anarchists, possibly due to the origins of the black flag of anarchism in the pirate flag, and due to books like
The Many Headed Hydraby Marcus Rediker, about the early resistance to capitalism and colonialism, and Pirate Utopias, by Paul Lamborn Wilson, otherwise known as Hakim Bey. According to several authors, the pirate ship was among the most democratic institutions of the colonial age.
* Pirates also occasionally rival
vampiresas themes for goth music, fashion, and imagery. Goth musician/comedian Voltaire illustrates the sometimes humorous rivalry between vampiric and pirate camps of goths in the song "Vampire Club" from the album " Boo Hoo" (2002).
The Jolly Rogersis a pirate-themed Renaissance Fairemusical troupe based in Kansas City.
* The hardcore/pop punk band
Set Your Goalswill soon be releasing their first, pirate themed, full length album, " Mutiny!".
* The Ska/Punk band
the Aquabatsrecorded a song entitled "Captain Hampton and the Midget Pirates", which told the story of Jim, a young boy who joins a pirate-hunting crew headed by Captain Hampton.
The Pirate", a musical starring Judy Garlandand Gene Kelly, has a number of songs about piracy in general, and the dread pirate "Mack the Black" Macoco in particular.
Relient Kreleased a single covering the song "The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything" for the children's show VeggieTales. It was originally recorded by the cast of VeggieTales, and Relient K's version of the song was later included in the 2003 compilation album called "Veggie Rocks!"
* There is a metal band from Calgary, Alberta, Canada called
Verbal Deceptionthat base their music on pirates and life at sea. They have recently released their debut album called "AURUM AETUS PIRATICUS".
pirate metalband Alestormare a band who use pirates as their main theme. The band play such songs as "Captain Morgan's Revenge", "No Quarter", "Set Sail and Conquer" and "Terror on the High Seas". Their fans are encouraged to dress up as pirates and bring props to concerts.
*Irish-American Rebel Rock band The Bleeding Irish have numerous songs referring to Pirate history and Piracy in general, most notably their latest hit "Tale of Anne Bonney". A song about the life and death of female Irish Pirate Anne Bonney and her love affair with Calico Jack Rackham.
*British metal band, "Peglegger", base their lyrics and riffs upon that of old pirate tales and folk music. Another example of the genre of
pirate metal. "Peglegger"s most notable song is "Battle Cry".
* Leeds - UK based
pirate metalband "Skull Branded Pirates" again use pirates as their main musical theme, with a style more akin to a blend of NWOBHMand Thrash metalthan the power metalstyle used by other bands. "Skull Branded Pirates" currently available songs are "Stormed and Cursed Seas" and "Far Beyond Forever"
Captain Dan & the Scurvy Crewmake pirate-themed rap music.
Latviaentered with " Pirates Of The Sea ", sung by " Wolfes Of The Sea " in Eurovision Song Contest2008.
* Jimmy Buffet, an island music player, is famous for many different songs that incorporate pirates such as 'A Pirate Looks At Forty'.
Sid Meier's Pirates!" by Sid Meieris a well-known video gamefeaturing pirates.
* The pirate-themed "Monkey Island" series of computer games is inspired by Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean ride and set in the 17th century Caribbean- starring the "hero" pirate
Guybrush Threepwoodand the "evil" pirate LeChuck.
* "" features pirates such as Tetra and her crew.
* "" features pirate-themed enemies and locations, including the recurring villain
King K. Roolnow named Kaptain K. Rool and dressed as a pirate captain.
Uncharted Waters" is a series of computer games by Koeiset in the Age of Explorationwhere the player takes the role of a naval fleet captain. All the games feature pirates as regular threats and it is possible to play with pirate characters in some of the iterations.
Yohoho! Puzzle Pirates" is a massively multiplayer online game in which the player takes the role of a pirate, having adventures on the high seas and pillaging money from roaming enemy ships.
Pirates, Vikings and Knights II" is a multiplayer video game in which players can play as a team of highly stereotypical pirates.
Skies of Arcadia" is a computer game about a group of air pirates that struggle against an oppressive power threatening to take over and destroy the world.
Maple Story" has added a Pirate job class.
Rogue Galaxy" is a computer game in which the main character, Jaster Roguejoins a crew of space pirates to help defeat an oppressive empire.
Final Fantasy XII" has many characters, including Balthierare sky pirates. Also, Faris in Final Fantasy Vand Leila in Final Fantasy IIare pirates.
Lego Racers" first boss is Captain Redbeard. When he is beaten, you can build cars using "pirated-themed" lego pieces.
* "Loot", a card game made by
* "" is an adventure
video puzzle gamefor the Nintendo Wii
Suikoden IVthere are a great deal of pirates to encounter and recruit.
Sonic Rush Adventure" takes place in a pirate-themed world. This includes a robot pirate named Captain Whisker.
* " " from EA is a mix of third-person adventure and sea battles.
Star Wars Empire At War" contains a non-playable faction called the Black Sun Pirates, a large gang of mercenaries.
* " Pirates feature as a character class in several
Megaman Battle Network 6" a WWW member named Captain Blackbeard, an operator of Diveman.EXE who dressed as a sailor.
Pirates in sports
Because pirate ships connote fearsomeness, loyalty and teamwork, many professional and amateur sports teams are named "Pirates." The most famous of these in the United States is the
Pittsburgh Pirates, a Major League Baseballteam that has used the nickname since 1891.
Pittsburgh Pirates- Major League Baseball
Amsterdam Pirates- Dutch Baseball League
Portland Pirates- American Hockey League
Tampa Bay Buccaneers- National Football League
Oakland Raiders- National Football League
Wörthersee Piraten- Österreichische Basketball Bundesliga, Austria
Tampa Bay Mutiny- Major League Soccer
Orlando Pirates- Premier Soccer League, South Africa
Bristol Rovers FC- Football League One, England
Canberra Raiders- National Rugby League, Australia
Texas Tech Red Raiders- Big 12 Conference
**East Carolina Pirates -
**East Tennessee State Buccaneers -
**Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders -
Sun Belt Conference
**Mount Union Purple Raiders -
Ohio Athletic Conference
**Seton Hall Pirates -
Big East Conference
** UMass Dartmouth Corsairs -
Little East Conference
**Mass Maritime Buccaneers -
Massachusetts State College Athletic Conference
Richmond Renegades- Southern Professional Hockey League
Prince Albert Raiders- Western Hockey League
Rochester Raiders- Great Lakes Indoor Football League
Barret's Privateers" is a song popular in Nova Scotiadetailing the fictional story of Elcid Barret and his privateers and their voyage on the Antalope to raid American shipping vessels.
Pro wrestler Paul Burchillfrom " WWE Friday Night SmackDown" dressed like a pirate and claimed that Blackbeardis his great-great-great-great-great-grandfather. Previously, Carl Ouelletwrestled as Jean-Pierre Lafitte (supposedly a descendant of pirate Jean Lafitte).
Maddox (writer)often portrays himself as a pirate on his website The Best Page in the Universe.
* [http://www.stfrancis.edu/historyinthemovies/Pirates.htm Movie History]
* [http://www.musicanet.org/robokopp/shanty/elpirate.htm Lyrics for Pirate Shanty] from Emerson, Lake, and Palmer's 1977 Works Volume 1
* [http://www.bonaventure.org.uk/ed/code.htm The Pirates' Code] : the history behind it
* [http://www.piratesmagazine.com Pirates Magazine]
* [http://www.bilgemunky.com Bilgemunky.com] includes many pirate-themed reviews of music, clothing, games, and rum.
* [http://www.ThePirateKing.com/movies/ Complete list of every Pirate Movie ever made] from the silent era to present day
* [http://www.talklikeapirate.com/ International Talk Like A Pirate Day]
* [http://www.youthonline.ca/pirates/glossary.shtml Youth Pirate Glossary]
* [http://voyager.commendo.com/video_talk_like_pirate/ Talk Like A Pirate Video Clips]
* [http://www.internationalpiratesociety.org The International Pirate Society featuring the only official all Pyrate conference in the country]
* [http://www.pyratecon.com The official web site for the annual PyrateCon Convention held in New Orleans]
Roleplaying, Reenactments, and Other Games
* [http://www.piratesoftibia.com The Pirates of Tibia]
* [http://www.piratebrethren.com/forum/ The Pirate Brethren Web Forum]
* [http://www.noquartergiven.net No Quarter Given]
* [http://www.gentlemenoffortune.com Gentlemen of Fortune]
* [http://www.searlesbuccaneers.org Searle's Buccaneers]
* [http://www.dirtyrottenoar.com/ The Crew of the Dirty Rotten Oar]
* [http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/003597.html Pirate R as in I-r-eland?] An exploration of the "r" in pirate speech
* [http://www.bonaventure.org.uk/ed/language.htm Pirate Language]
* [http://ask.metafilter.com/mefi/30484 Where did pirate speech come from?]
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