Pirates: Facts About Pirates Learnt From Pirate of the Caribbean and Other Films

Pirate of the Caribbean

I’ve always loved pirate movies, especially pirate of the Carribean with its hilarious character Jack Sparrow, terrorising the seas along with his crew members.

When I was a kid, I got carried away with the tales of black beard, Captain Hook, Peter Pan, and of course our very own Jack Sparrow, as we all know Jack is someone who longs for voyages, his lust for adventures often had times brought him closer to death, that at a point he lost all he had and even gave away his priceless compass.

But today we not talking about Jack Sparrow, we would be looking at the life of a pirate ship and his crew. Many pirates never wanted to become a pirate in the first place.

Most joined the pirate ship because they were treated better than the merchants treats his crew members, and leaders of a pirate ship Are usually selected by the crew members, and the captain is always someone who is either the strongest or the corniest one among the crew.

If the captain treats it’s crew member poorly or becomes unpopular, his crew members would Vite him out and elect someone else to replace him.

There was a time called the golden age of the pirates; this was the period when pirates caused mayhem across the sea lane all over the world, especially the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic. Pirate go onboard and pillaging and looting from the ships they come across and thus making the seas unsafe to travel on.

Meaning and Origin of Pirates

Pirate of the Caribbean

Pirates are just thieves who live their lives on the sea and carry out their thieving expedition on the water — stealing from sailors and all those who sail pass them, especially those with treasures.

Really, no one knows where pirates came from, but some reports say the first set of pirates came from the Mediterranean region in the fourteenth century B.C and they were called sea people.

Though they were not the only ones, as they were also people who came from the Middle East (Vikings) remember Ragna he’s also an example, people came from Asia as well, so one can’t really say pirating originated from a specific place. As long as there is sea, people would always realise that being a thief would fetch more wealth especially for those that live on the sea.


What do pirates do?

Pirates simply pillage from all and anywhere they find treasure. Stealing is usually for survival or for fun, as most times pirates run out of resources, as the ship most times lack the ability to preserve food so that foods would go cold because of the weather on the sea, and the food eventually goes bad.

So stealing and stealing is always the only option they have. When pirates steal such exercise is not restricted to other ships, but also they steal from villages as well.

How to become a pirate?

Some pirate was made, that is, when some ships were raided they would take some people from the attacked ship, and make them work for the pirate ship, they automatically become a pirate.

Another way one becomes a pirate is by request to join a pirate crew; Now before one could become a pirate, there are codes he must be ready to abide by.

Having pirates means having anti-pirate, as so many were against the ways of the ville ruthless men and woman of the seas.

Piracy is said to be criminal violence or robbery of men and women on ships of the seas, most pirates do this out of amusement, of their crew.

Usually, pirates don’t have a ship of there’s as no one, would commission a ship for them and the authorities banned the construction of ships for pirates, so what they do to get a ship of theirs is to hijack other vessels of the sea and make it their own.

Hierarchy on board a pirate ship

As ruthless as they may be these men are bounded by a code, and they practice a form of equal system and have a group that can veto out the pirate they were called quartermaster this group act as a counterbalance against the captain of the ship.

Majority of their loot was ship equipment and cargo and medicines were highly valued more than jewellery as they had no idea of the value of diamonds plus selling one are usually difficult.

Ordinary seamen usually receive a share of about £1000 about $1.17 million for the year this was usually given at the captain’s discretion. Though the life of a pirate is not a life worth living, though it comes with good pay, but once caught by the authorities it’s usually execution, after a fair hearing which is always not in their favour.


Truth be told there is a great deal of money to be made through pirating, the record shows that one of the biggest plunder was the capture of the Spanish frigate Hermione, which carried a treasure which values so great seamen each earned around £485 around $1.4 million in the year 1762.

This kinds of plunder could only be successful with frigate as smaller ships lack the firepower to give chase to other bigger ships. Frigates are warships built for speed and being able to manoeuvre obstacles.

A frigate is best to not only help in plunder but to also help them especially in the Carribean where hellish hurricane occurs yearly, and if they need to outrun pirate hunters, this is the kind of ship they need.

Illness and Death

In movies and cartoons we do not really get to see the harsh life the live, one thing pirates usually lack on the sea is vitamin C, months on sea with this some pirates starts getting deformed “survey,” e.g. hunched back, swollen gum, loss of tooth, hair loss, these are effects of lack of vitamin in one’s system. And pirates usually do not live long; they either die by gun or sword wound when fighting or when stealing, or they get killed once captured.

As one can see pirates never really lived that glorious life we’ve been made to think they live, the presence of a pirate on the planet earth is a short, filled with suffering, illness.

So you know pirates still exist till date, they still operate in South East Asia, an estimated 13 billion dollars worth of loot is attributed to pirating every year, the modern device they use is a sonic weapon that burst eardrums and causes dizziness by using sound to cause pain, the traditional flag of a pirate ship is the Jolly Roger.

Emmanuella Ekokotu
Ekokotu Emmanuella is a sociologist and Anthropologist, writer, and fashion model who lives in Benin city, Edo state,Nigeria.