Friday, September 19, 2008

Talk Like a Pirate Day

It's international talk like a pirate day today so I felt I should mark it on this, one of my least loved blogs. I need to do more here as I have actually played a couple of pirate wargames!

Of course much of the "shiver me timbers" view of pirate speak originated in the completely over the top performance of Robert Newton in Treasure Island (1950), Blackbeard the Pirate (1952) and Long John Silver (1954). Newton was from Dorset and so the accent was an easy one for him to develop. Edward Teach (Blackbeard) was also a West Country man so Newton's interpretation is justifiable!

"Pieces of Eight!"

I also remember the very piratical (and Newtonian) "Old Jamaica" chocolate bar ads on TV.

"Don't ee knock it back all at once!"

It's only recently, with the Pirates of the Carribean films, that other accents have emerged from the "Aargh!" school of piratical pronunciation.

"Tottering turtles!"

Personally, my favourite pirate accent belongs to the much more refined Captain Pugwash.

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