Pirate Superstitions

Discussion in 'Pirate 411' started by Shamus The Brute, May 12, 2011.

  1. Shamus The Brute

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    Ahoy there me hearties!
    
    ~ Today is Thursday, May 12th ~
    If you have not yet looked at the calendar...this is just a reminder (or warning, lol) that tomorrow_is May 13th; FRIDAY the 13th!!!
    
    [​IMG]

    On this particular day here within the US (other countries perhaps as well)...Friday the 13th is viewed as being "unlucky" for those holding feelings of superstition &/or worry.
    
    PIRATES & sailors around the world were no exception to this rule! Avast! They were a supertitious breed ~

    *Below is a list of both "good" & "bad" luck tendencies that pirates themselves both lived & possibly have died by.
    :eek:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Good Luck
    1. A figurehead in the form of a naked woman, perched on the bow, calms the sea and her open eyes will guide it to safety .A naked woman on board was thought to be good luck. (guess they were hoping to get lucky)
    This is the reason for naked figureheads. (on Bowsprit)
    2. Swallows seen at sea are a good sign, as are dolphins swimming with the ship.
    3. Tattoos and piercing are said to ward off evil spirits
    for sailors to wear gold hoop earrings was good luck
    4. It's good luck to spit in the ocean before you sail.
    5. Coins thrown into the sea as a boat leaves port is a small toll to Neptune, the sea god, for a safe voyage,
    6. Horseshoes on a ship’s mast will turn away a storm.
    7. Cats brought luck. If a ship's cat came to a sailor, it meant good luck.
    8.A child to be born on a ship was good luck (probably not for the child)
    * this is where the term "Son Of A Gun" comes from
    9. St. Elmo's fire is the discharge of static electricity from points on a ship, such as masts and spars. According to some superstitious sea stories, if one flame appears, it means bad weather is coming. If two flames appear, it means the weather will be clear.
    10. Pouring wine on the deck will bring good luck on a long voyage.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------​
    Bad Luck
    1. Women onboard a ship distract the crew and place it in peril.(probably true)
    2. CUT NEITHER NAILS NOR HAIR AT SEA. Cuttings of nail and hair were offerings to Prosperine, the Roman Goddess of the infernal regions, and it would make Neptune angry to have offerings to somebody else made in his domain. Doing so would bring bad luck.
    3. It is unlucky to start a cruise on Friday.
    This is the day Christ was crucified on.
    *The reluctance of seamen to sail on a Friday reached such epic proportions, that in the 1800s the British Government decided to take strong measures to prove the fallacy of the superstition. They laid the keel of a new vessel on Friday, selected her crew on a Friday, launched her on a Friday and named her HMS Friday. They then placed her in command of one Captain James Friday and sent her to sea for the first time on a Friday. The scheme worked well, and had only one drawback ... neither ship nor crew was ever heard from again. HMS Friday is an urban legend and believed to be false
    4. Never start a voyage on the first Monday in April.
    This is the day that Cain slew Able.
    5. Avoid people with red hair when going to the ship to begin a journey.
    Red heads bring bad luck to a ship, which can be averted if you speak to the red-head before they speak to you.
    6. Whistling - One widespread and universal superstition forbids whistling in the wheelhouse or anywhere onboard for that matter. Whistling onboard will raise a gale, hence "whistling up a storm".
    7. Scottish Fisherman, landing a left boot rather than a fish is considered the ultimate in bad luck. Whenever a left boot showed up in the catch inside a trawling net, fishermen would instantly spit on it before tossing it back into the water. On the other hand, those same Scots considered the right boot to be a sign of good fortune. Coming up with a right boot in the net was looked upon as favorable and the boot would be fastened to the mast in the belief that it would bring good fortune to the fishing expedition
    8. It is bad luck to name a ship for an engaged woman
    this will make the ship jealous.
    9. Sailors believed that if a cat licked its fur against the grain it meant a hailstorm was coming; if it sneezed, rain was on the way; and if it was frisky, the wind would soon blow.
    10. Killing a swallow, albatross, gull or dolphin will bring bad luck.
    Seabirds are thought to carry the souls of dead sailors
    11. Priests are not lucky to have on a ship.
    They dress in black and perform funeral services.
    12. NAME CHANGE
    It’s bad luck to change the name of a boat. but if you have to: write the soon-to-be-exorcised name on a piece of paper, fold the paper, and place it in a small cardboard or wooden box. Burn the box. Scoop up the ashes and throw them into the sea on an outgoing tide. If you live on a lake, do it at night and only during a new moon. River dwellers should send the ashes downstream.
    13. Sailors believed cats could start storms with the magic stored in their tails so they always kept them well fed and contented
    14. A rabbit or salmon found on board the boat was one of the stranger nautical superstitions, and would have prevented a fisherman from sailing that day.
    15. Pigs
    Atlantic seamen in the West Indies had a bizarre superstition related to swine. Pigs themselves were held at great respect because they possessed cloven hooves just like the devil and the pig was the signature animal for the Great Earth Goddess who controlled the winds. As a result, these fishermen never spoke the word "pig" out loud, instead referring to the animal by such safe nicknames as Curly-Tail and Turf-Rooter. It was believed that mentioning the word "pig" would result in strong winds. Actually killing a pig on board the ship would result in a full scale storm.
    16. When the clothes of a dead sailor are worn by another sailor during the same voyage, misfortune will befall the entire ship
    17. If the ships cat approached a sailor and then went away, it was bad luck.
    18. To see rats leaving a ship is bad luck
    19. To name the boat with a word ending in "a" is bad luck
    20. A black “sea bag” is bad luck for a seaman.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Death
    1. It is said that a ship’s bell that rings without human aid is an omen of death.
    2. Disaster will follow if you step onto a boat with your Left Foot first.
    3. A stone thrown from a vessel putting out to sea ensures she will never return.
    4. If a cat was thrown overboard, a storm and very bad luck and maybe death would follow.
    5. The word "drown" can never be spoken at sea or it may summon up the actual event
    6. A shark following the ship is a sign of inevitable death
    7. Manta rays, also known as devilfish or sea devils, were feared as much as sharks, for sailors believed these sea creatures could attach themselves to a ship’s anchor and drag her under the waves to Davy Jones’ Locker.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    If a woman sees a robin flying overhead on Valentine's Day, it means she will marry a sailor. If she sees a sparrow, she will marry a poor man and be very happy. If she sees a goldfinch, she will marry a millionaire.

    
     
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  2. JadeOHayes

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    GOSH ... what a list!

    Good luck:
    #1 - That was not fair ... why a 'woman', and naked too?? Why not 'man' ... and naked ... I guess I'd pass on that ... :lol1: Discrimination against women in pirates world was so apparent! :rolleyes:

    #3 - Ugh ... not a fan of tattoos and piercing! I guess I'd have to make my own luck or make up for that.
    #7 - A cat? Why cat? I'd want to take a dog instead!
    #8 - and look at #1 on Bad Luck! How in the world a woman on board could bring a bad luck and a child born on board brought good luck?? Who was having the baby then?

    Bad luck:
    #3 - Well, that GM event to rescue the 3 GMs starts on Friday ... not good to try to rescue them on that day then?
    #15 - Lucky you, ppl with 'pig' or 'swine' on their names ... cuz "supposedly", ppl wouldn't want to kill you on board, if they believed these superstitions ... (wait, we could kill you on land, right? :D)
    #19 - My next ship will definitely end with a letter "a". :D
    #20 - What is a black sea bag? :confused: A coroner bag or something? (Ik, been watching to many CSI shows ...)

    Death:
    #3 - I will try to bring some stones when I go sailing with somebody else, just in case ... ;)
    #4 - Ideas for next trip or the GM event (rescue 3 GMs): As soon as you board the enemy ship, find the cat and throw it overboard! If anything fails, the cat would do it.

    Last of all, I know what Jade should have started on her home on land: A goldfinch farm. :lol1:
     
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  3. Captian Fear

    Captian Fear Pirate Master

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    I heard gold earrings bring good eyesight not good luck.
    Ah well same story different version.
     
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  4. SEAKING23

    SEAKING23 Honorable Pirate

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    Here are some more:
    Before you start a voyage, and you wet your pants you must slap your self 5 1/2 times. If you don't its a sign you will get wet during the voyage.
    If you need to go right before the voyage, you must fart while signing praises to Neptune, who will then relieve you of your waste.
    Then, if i cat touches you before a voyage, you will kill somebody during that voyage
    If a fat politician wants war, it is back luck to participate in that war.
    And that's all :)
     
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  5. JadeOHayes

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    You're joking, right? :confused: ... :D
     
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  6. John Foulroberts

    Admin

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    Pfft... I will laugh if I get a Legendary Cursed tomorrow. Bad luck? :p
     
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  7. SEAKING23

    SEAKING23 Honorable Pirate

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    Of course....
     
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  8. Amelia Darkskull

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    I dont think so..
     
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  9. SEAKING23

    SEAKING23 Honorable Pirate

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    Or am I? You decide. I'm to lazy.
     
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  10. Will Nightwolf

    Will Nightwolf Legendary Pirate
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    Kool sounds interesting.
     
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  11. JadeOHayes

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    OK, I'll decide for you. Yes, you were joking. :D
     
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  12. King Arrguy

    King Arrguy Notorious Pirate

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    strange i got a blightfang that day :D
     
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