Some pirates kept parrot onboard their ships?

The most probably beginnings of the existence of parrots on pirate ships was related to the trade of parrots as exotic animals.  Parrots were initially brought to ancient Greece back in the year 385 BC, and the trade of live parrots became common practice soon thereafter. There was a well established business in the trade of exotic animals during the golden age of piracy (including parrots) as royalty in Europe was enthralled by the parrot’s ability to speak and interact with humans. The most exotic animals were considered more valuable, and we all know that pirates love anything of value that could translate into money or gold!  As many pirates often idealized the lifestyle of royalty, pirates took a liking to owning an exotic animal since it was considered a status symbol of the wealthy. Plus, a parrot’s naturally easy going social behavior made it a good companion to pass those lonely days on the open water. Parrot’s have an innate ability to learn tricks, speak and interact with humans which is unusual for most birds, so they became even more popular and sought after.

Some historians believe that cats and dogs also joined pirates on their adventures on the open seas in addition to parrots. As cats and dogs have been living amongst humans for thousands of years, and it is likely they served the same purpose to pirates as they do today in modern times. Cats and dogs have long been a great companion for humans, and while on board they could help eat any unwanted mice that could threaten precious food supplies on board.  A good mouser cat on a sailing ship would have been very important to help prevent loss of food rations that would be impossible to replace until the ship reached dry land. In addition, it is common knowledge that pirates were very superstitious and some seaman actually considered a black cat on board to be good luck. Legend was that as long as the cat was well fed and kept safe from harm, nothing would happen to the ship. On the flip side, there was a belief that if a cat was thrown overboard, a bad storm would soon form which meant bad luck was on its way.

Credit : Pirate Ship Vallarta 

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An 18th century pirate would have used which weapons?

Pirates in the so-called Golden Age of Piracy (1690-1740) used all manner of weapons to attack ships and relieve them of their precious cargoes. Heavy cannons, muskets, pistols, cutlasses, and grenades were just some of the weapons pirates employed to wreak havoc on the High Seas. Besides all of these, perhaps the best pirate weapon of all was the black flag they raised, like a Jolly Roger, or an all-red flag, which meant a vessel should surrender immediately or face dire consequences.

Cannons had a smooth bore in the Golden Age and were fired by ramming an iron ball down the muzzle, pouring gunpowder into a hole in the breach, and lighting it using a slow match (a length of rope which had been chemically treated to burn slowly). Cannons on a pirate ship would have been taken as booty from captured vessels and so they varied in size and power, even on the same ship. The largest cannons might have a barrel up to 12 feet (3.6 m) long and be capable of firing a ball weighing 68 pounds (over 30 kg). However, very few ships had the strength to carry such monsters, and pirates preferred their ships to be fast and sleek. A sloop, the most commonly used vessel type, would have carried only a handful of cannons, and these were usually capable of firing 8- or 12-pound (3.5 or 5.5 kg) cannonballs.

Getting a little closer to an enemy vessel, the next weapon to be employed could be grenades, often called fireballs or powder flasks. These were made from glass bottles filled with gunpowder and a quantity of lead shot or random metal pieces. A slow match like those in guns was put into the neck of the bottle or tied around it so that when arriving at its destination and smashing, flame hit powder and the whole thing exploded. Grenades known as stinkpots might also be filled with substances like sulphur to intoxicate an enemy crew.

Considering some of the drawbacks of gunpowder weapons, it is perhaps not surprising that most pirates favoured the speed and thrust of a sword blade. Thin duelling-type swords were not in use until the 17th century and then only by the nobility. Rather, pirates used a heavy cutlass or sabre which had a sharpened point and a sharp single edge of the blade. These swords were designed to quickly cut and slash an opponent rather than dither about with intricate swordplay. The cutlass had a slightly curved blade, and the hand was well protected by a half-circle guard or cage. The blade could be up to 3 feet (90 cm) in length. As a cutlass blade was thick and heavy, it could be used for other useful tasks such as cutting rigging in an emergency, felling trees, and opening coconuts.

Pirates had several portable gunpowder weapons to choose from which they could use when boarding target vessels. All of them had the disadvantage that they could only fire one shot and then had to be reloaded, which took time that often was not available in the heat of battle. In addition, gunpowder weapons needed dry weather to work best, they were often unreliable and misfired or exploded, and they were not particularly accurate. Some pirates compensated for these defects by carrying several weapons at once, the most famous of these was Edward Teach, aka Blackbeard (d. 1718), who was said to have bristled with six pistols hung from sashes across his torso.

Credit : World History Encyclopedia 

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Why did pirates wear earrings?

From Blackbeard to Jack Sparrow, pirates and sailors of old are often depicted wearing earrings. But the gold hoops weren't just swashbuckling fashion statements they served several useful purposes.

Seamen proudly sported earrings as a mark of their travels and voyages. Earrings were given to young sailors to commemorate their first crossing of the equator, or when they rounded the treacherous waters of Cape Horn, the southernmost tip of South America.

Earrings were also worn for superstitious reasons. Some pirates were convinced that wearing an earring would improve or even cure bad eyesight, as they believed that the precious metals in an earring possessed magical healing powers. Another tale was that pierced ears would prevent seasickness. Others believed that a gold earring served as a protective talisman and that a man wearing an earring wouldn't drown.

This, of course, often proved to be false. But earrings made of silver or gold were worth enough to pay for a sailor's funeral if his body washed ashore. Some seamen even engraved the name of their home port on the inside of the earring so that their bodies could be sent to their families for a proper burial. If a man died on a ship, the earrings helped to cover the cost of transporting his body home so that he wouldn't be buried at sea or on foreign soil.

But wearing hoop earrings did serve one truly beneficial purpose for living sailors. "Pirates, especially those who fired the ships' cannons during close combat with the enemy, dangled wads of wax from their earrings to use as earplugs," Doug Lennox writes in "Now You Know Big Book of Answers."

Wearing earrings didn't protect pirates from drowning, seasickness or bad eyesight, but at least it helped protect them against hearing loss .

Credit : Live Science 

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Queen Anne's Revenge was the flagship of which pirate?

The Queen Anne's Revenge was an infamous pirate vessel, formerly named Concord and La Concorde de Nantes. Imposing, terrifyingly beautiful, a brutal beast of the sea, this legendary ship of the seven seas struck dread into the heart of pirates on the high seas. Cutting a quick path over open water, the Revenge boasted strong defenses and lethal armaments. The Queen Anne's Revenge reportedly sailed full of wealth and treasure plundered from many ill-fated victims.

Bristling with cannons and spiked with human bones, the Queen Anne's Revenge was the flagship of the notorious pirate Blackbeard. Under his command, this fearsome vessel was manned by the undead, whether it was a soulless crew of jumbees or zombies, await with deadly determination to repel all boarders. The Revenge also came to life as long as its captain wielded the Sword of Triton, then the vessel would do his indomitable will and spread terror in its bloody wake. According to legend, the Queen Anne's Revenge was festooned with the skeletons of Blackbeard's victims, and spat Greek fire from its bow to incinerate enemy ships, or the occasional crew member fallen out of favor.

During the quest for the Fountain of Youth, Blackbeard held no ordinary ship's crew, but a crew consisting of a mixture of humans and zombies, led by his daughter Angelica. Several days after being shanghaied aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge, Jack Sparrow used his lowly position as mere crewman to lead a mutiny against the zombie officers. However, the revolt was foiled when Blackbeard himself appeared and used the Sword of Triton to spring the sinister ship to life, in which Jack's crew of mutineers got caught in its rigging. Throughout the quest, Jack and Angelica danced on deck, the Revenge partook in the mermaid hunt at Whitecap Bay, and was docked in a cove of a mysterious island for the remained of the journey to the Fountain. After the death of Blackbeard, the Queen Anne's Revenge and its crew would be led by Hector Barbossa.

A year later, the ship served as the flagship for Barbossa's fleet, eventually becoming one of the most deadliest vessels to sail the seas. During Armando Salazar's attack on pirates, Barbossa met with Salazar and promised to locate Jack Sparrow in exchange for his life. Salazar accepted but forced Barbossa to abandon his ship and travel with him to exact his revenge. The Queen Anne's Revenge was thus left to the winds and tides of the sea.

Credit : Fandom 

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Who was Jack Sparrow based on?

John Ward was outlandish and fearless, terrorising the Mediterranean with a complete absence of morals – little wonder the English pirate was an inspiration for Captain Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean films. 

Jack Sparrow was a legendary pirate of the Seven Seas, and the irreverent trickster of the Caribbean. A captain of equally dubious morality and sobriety, a master of self-promotion and self-interest, Jack fought a constant and losing battle with his own best tendencies. Jack's first love was the sea, his second, his beloved ship the Black Pearl.

The son of Captain Edward Teague, Jack Sparrow was born on a pirate ship in a typhoon. Before he was known as "Captain Jack Sparrow", he was simply known as Jack, a teenage stowaway who, even then, had a desire for adventure. Jack first sailed on the Barnacle with a young ragtag crew on a quest to locate and procure the legendary Sword of Cortés. As a young pirate he earned the name Jack Sparrow when he trapped the notorious Spanish pirate hunter Capitán Salazar in the Devil's Triangle. Years after his teenage adventures, an encounter with the infamous rogue pirates forced him to abandon the pirate life and take employment in the East India Trading Company. After five years of faithful service, during which he sailed across all the Seven Seas, he was given command of the Wicked Wench, a ship owned by Cutler Beckett, the EITC Director for West Africa. As Beckett's employee, Jack searched for the mystical island of Kerma and its legendary treasure, until he decided to betray Beckett and keep the island and its inhabitants safe from Beckett and his slave traders. When Beckett contracted him to transport a cargo of slaves to the Bahamas, Jack chose to liberate them and steal the Wench from Beckett. However, Beckett's men managed to find him and branded him as a pirate, while the Wench was set aflame and sunk. After striking a bargain with Davy Jones, the ghostly captain of the Flying Dutchman, to resurrect his beloved vessel, Jack had the Wench renamed the Black Pearl and began the pirate life anew. At some point, Jack Sparrow became one of the nine Pirate Lords, his domain being the Caribbean Sea.

Throughout his years as an infamous pirate of the Caribbean, Jack Sparrow embarked on many adventures, several of which involved gaining items of unique value. Jack was captain of the Black Pearl for two years, during which time he searched for the Shadow Gold. But when he was after the treasure of Isla de Muerta, Jack lost the Pearl in a mutiny led by his first mate, Captain Hector Barbossa. Ten years later, with the help of Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann, Jack retrieved the Black Pearl after having fought and killed the cursed Barbossa, thereby becoming its captain once again. Jack was soon after the Dead Man's Chest, to settle his debt with the fearsome Davy Jones, which ended with him being taken to Davy Jones' Locker by the Kraken. After escaping the Locker with the help of his crew, led by the resurrected Hector Barbossa, Jack had joined with the Brethren Court in the battle against Lord Cutler Beckett, who had control over Davy Jones and the Flying Dutchman. Jack would later sail on stranger tides during the quest for the Fountain of Youth, contending with the notorious Blackbeard and his daughter, Angelica, who forced him aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge. After the malicious Captain Salazar's ghost crew escaped from the Devil's Triangle bent on killing every pirate, Jack sought to reverse his recent spate of ill fortune by finding the Trident of Poseidon. Jack would be helped on his journey by Henry Turner who sought to free his father and they would be aided by Carina Smyth.

Over the course of time, Captain Jack Sparrow became a center of intrigue as myths and legends have been told of his exploits. Most of these tales, however, were exaggerations, or even fabrications, embellished by Jack himself to bolster his reputation. Despite his dishonesty and many deceptions, Jack Sparrow did embark on a number of grand and thrilling adventures, some involving the supernatural, pirate lore, magic, and journeys in discovering hidden treasures. Indeed, Jack's ultimate ambition was to have the freedom to sail the seas as a legendary pirate for eternity.

Credit : Fandom 

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