– Insane or foolish
- "Hey!"; From the Dutch word for "hold fast" or
– a pistol
– a sailor posted on land
"Stop that!" or "Shut up!"
Bilge - Foolish talk. The
bilges of a ship were usually filled with rack water, hence "bilgewater".
Booty - Any form of loot
Brethren of the coast - The
name used by 17th century pirates to describe themselves.
Cackle fruit - Chicken eggs
"Cat" - A whip with many lashes, used for
flogging. To "let the cat out of the bag" is derived from this.
Caulker - A stiff glass of
alcohol taken to round off a drinking bout.
"Damn yer eyes" - A
popular insult much used by pirates.
Dance the hempen jig - To
hang. Ropes were usually made from hemp.
Davy Jones Locker
- The place at the bottom of the sea usually reserved for Pirates.
Deadlights - Eyes.
Dead men - empty bottles from
which the spirit has flown.
Dead man's chest - A coffin.
Drivelswigger - Someone who
reads too many nautical adventures.
Feed the Fish - To be thrown
into the sea, dead or alive.
Dutchman - Ghost ship whose
sighting spelled doom on the seas
Freebooter - Another term for
Pirate, from the Dutch words for "Free" and "Plunder".
Grog - Most any form of a rum
based drink. Usually Rum mixed with the putrid drinking water on board a
ship to make it more palatable; can also involve fruit juices when
available. Derived from a British Admiral who was fond of drink. To feel
"Groggy" is to have maybe over done it a bit...
Gully - A knife or dagger
Handsomely - Quickly.
"Handsomely now!" meant "hurry it up!"
Jack Ketch - The hangman. To
"dance with Jack Ketch" meant to "to hang".
Jolly Roger - General
term for a flag emblazoned with emblems of death. These "pirate
flags" were used to warn the pirate's victims to surrender without a
fight. Click here for more about Flags
Kiss the gunner's daughter
- To be bent over one of the ship's cannons and be flogged.
- The sea.
On the account
- The pirate life.
- Another term for flogging.
- An experienced sailor.
Sea rat & Sea rover
-Other names for Pirate.
- An expression of surprise, derived from a sudden blow to a ship, like
from a cannonball.
Splice the Mainbrace
- To take a drink.
- An ordinary seaman who mopped the decks.
Swallow the anchor
- To retire from the life of the sea.
- Another term for Piracy.
Walk the plank
- A short walk to a watery grave.