Friday, 16 September 2011

That Friday Feeling...16/09/11

Ahoy there me hearties, on Monday it be 'Talk Like a Pirate' Day so we'll be thinking about them pirates this week. And that's about the extent of my pirate talk...! Pirates seems fitting enough to me - we're going to a masked ball on Saturday and I still don't have a costume: if only I'd looked on Etsy 2 weeks ago as there are LOADS of pirate costumes - yes for adults too! But I thought I'd give you the fun pirate bits that I found. Enjoy!

I love niftyknits' meerkats and this pirate is no exception!

For those who want to be pirates - some shelf blocks from SparrowPrimitives.
How awesome are these cufflinks by bitsandbadges? Lego AND pirate! 

A few random facts about pirates for you... these may or may not be totally made up!!
  • Pirate believed that having women on board was very bad luck, and whistling could make the weather turn stormy, apparently that's where the saying 'to whistle up a storm' comes from.
  • Pirates would almost always steal their ships - buying one was too risky as they might be recognised and sent to jail!
  • While pirating has been happening since at least the 15th century, it was most rife between 1690 and 1720.
  • Pirates were very democratic - they held votes as to which way to go and which colonial ships to attack. Each member of the crew had a vote. They also all got an equal share of the booty with a few members of the crew (captain, ship's pilot, cook, carpenter etc) getting a double portion.
  • A pirate captain was actually a battle leader, not a captain; he led the attacks on other ships - the real captain was called the ship's pilot and gained an equal share of the booty as the captain.
  • The word Buccaneer comes from the pirates - it derives from the word 'boucan' which is a way of cooking meat over an open fire, like a barbeque. Pirates often landed in places where there were cattle or other herds - they would catch and kill larger animals and then roast / cook them over open fires.
  • 'Pieces of eight' were actually Spanish 'reales' coins, and were the most common form of currency aboard pirate ships. 'Doubloons' were Spanish 'escudos' - large gold coins which were of the highest value.
  • Pirates pierced their ears because they believed that gold and silver in their earlobes would improve their eyesight... ???!!!
  • There is no evidence that pirates ever made treasure maps (none have been found) or that pirates ever made people walk the plank - walking the plank is a Hollywood invention, pirates preferred to just toss people overboard. And they didn't really 'arrrrrgh, and 'urrrrrgh' either - that's another Hollywood myth because the actor who played Long John Silver in the 1950s version of Treasure Island came from the Cotswalds, England and had a regional accent. 

4 comments:

Baban Cat said...

Love it!! I had a cat once that I called Bartie Ddu, Welsh for Black Bart, the infamous Welsh pirate Batholemewwww Roberts.
Why are pirates called pirates?
Because they arrrrrrrrrrre!

joseph said...

If you like Pirates then you'll have to pay a visit to my neck of the woods next year!

http://www.brixhampiratefestival.co.uk/

I've never been as always working etc, but I did serve a group of Pirates this year when they came in the shop.

Sparrow Primitives said...

Great stuff! Thank you for including my pirate blocks :) x

Heather Leavers said...

well I did not know about the arrrrggghhh accent thing, but now you say it, I can see how it could be true. Madness!
Not only is Monday "talk like a pirate day" it's also my (our!) wedding anniversary. If only we'd known, 31 years ago, the photos could have been so much more interesting!

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