Able Seaman - A capable and good sailor.
Addled - Crazy, not thinking straight or just plain silly.
Addlepate - A fool, somebody who is always silly.
Adrift - Floating free, without being steered or with anyone in charge.
Afeard - Afraid.
Aft - The back of the ship.
Ahoy! - ‘Hello.'
Aloft - Up high, often refers to ship’s masts and rigging.
Ambush - A surprise attack.
Arr - Yes/That’s great/I agree.
Articles - The rules a pirate must follow while on a ship.
Avast! - ‘Stop that now!’ or ‘Who’s there?’
Aye - ‘Yes, definitely.’
Aye Aye - ‘Of course, I’ll do that now.’
Ballast - The weight used to keep a ship steady and upright.
Barbary Coast - Mediterranean coast off of North Africa.
Barnacle - A kind of shell fish which can stick to the hull (bottom) of a ship. They cause the ship to go slower if not scraped off regularly.
Batten down the hatches - Prepare for a storm.
Be - Use instead of ‘am’, ‘are’ or ‘is’.
Becalmed - When a ship can’t move because there’s no wind to fill the sails.
Begad! - ‘By God!’
Belay - ‘Stop that, Now!’
Bilboes - Leg irons attached to the deck of a ship.
Bilge - The dirtiest, smelliest and lowest part of a ship or to talk rubbish.
Bilge rat - A rat that lives in the dirtiest, smelliest and lowest part of a ship. This is not a nice name to call somebody.
Bilgewater - The icky, revolting, disgusting water that covers the bilge floor.
Black Spotted - A person/animal that has had a curse put on them or is sentenced to death.
Blaggard - A man who lies and who you can’t trust.
Blimey - ‘Wow.’
Booty - Riches that have usually been stolen.
Bosun - The officer on the ship in charge of deck crew, rigging and anchors, also called a ‘boatswain’.
Bounty - A reward, usually paid by the Government for the capture of a criminal.
Broadside - Next to another ship, side by side, with the long sides of the ships facing.
Buccanneer - Pirates, usually from Hispaniola, who attacked Spanish ships in the Caribbean.
Bucko - Friend
Cabin - A pirate’s room on a ship.
Cable - A heavy rope.
Cackle fruit - Chicken eggs.
Captain - The person in charge of the ship.
Cap’n - Short for ‘Captain’.
Careen - To clean the hull of a ship.
Careening - Scraping off all the dirt and barnacles that have become stuck to the bottom of a ship so that it sails faster.
Cask - A barrel used to hold liquids, foods, gun powder and other things that need to stay dry.
Cast-away - A person who has been shipwrecked.
Cat’o’nine tails - A whip made up of nine knotted ropes and used as punishment.
Chantey - The songs pirates sing while they are working. (Also spelt ‘shantey’ or ‘shanty’.)
Chart - Map
Compass - A magnetic needle that spins freely in a casing to point out which way is north, south, east or west, and all directions in between.
Contraband - Goods that are smuggled illegally.
Convoy - A group of ships traveling together.
Corsair - Pirates in the Mediterranean.
Cot - A wooden bed, hung from rafters, and is more comfortable than a hammock.
Crow’s Nest - A lookout point at the top of the highest mast of a ship.
Cutlass - A curved sword, often used by sailors.
Davy Jones Locker - The bottom of the ocean.
Deadlights - Eyes.
Deck - The highest floor on a ship.
Deckhand - A person working on a ship, sometimes shortened to ‘hand’.
Dog - A name you might call a friend if you want to insult them (nicely).
Doubloon - An old Spainish gold coin.
Fair Winds - ‘Good Luck.’
Fathom - A length of 6ft (1.8m ish). Is often the distance from fingertip to fingertip when men stretch their arms out sideways.
Flog - To whip.
Fore - Short for ‘forward’.
Furl - To roll up and tie in place, often done to sails.
Galleon - A large, squarish ship used in war or to carry cargo.
Gangplank - A plank of wood put on the side of a ship and rested on land, so that people can get on and off the ship.
Gangway - ‘Clear a path.’
God’s speed - What you might say when somebody leaves, meaning ‘Travel safe’ or ‘Good luck’.
Grog - Rum mixed with water or any kind of alcohol.
Grub - Food
Hail - To call to another ship.
Hammock - A large piece of material hung from the rafters that a crew member sleeps in.
Hands - Crewmen.
Haven - A safe place.
Head - The toilet on a ship.
Heave to - To change the direction of the ship so it is facing forwards into the wind.
Hold - The space in a ship where cargo or prisoners were kept.
Hornpipe - A dance or a single reeded musical instrument.
Hornswaggle - To cheat.
Hornswaggler - A person who cheats.
Hulk - The old, dismantled body of a ship, sometimes used as prisons.
Hull - The body of a ship, not including the masts and rigging.
Irons - Leg irons attached to the deck of a ship (also called ‘bilboes’).
Jack Tar - Sailor
Jolly Roger - The pirate flag - a white skull and crossbones on a black background.
Keel - The main framework of a ship that runs from the front to the back at the bottom of the ship.
Keelhaul - To pull somebody under the keel of a ship. Done by using ropes and often as a form of punishment.
Knots - The speed a ship travels. A knot is the same as a nautical mile.
Lad - Young man.
Land ahoy! - ‘I see land.’
Land lubber or lubber - A person who likes being on land, often used as an insult.
Landyard - A short rope that things can be hung from.
Lass - Young woman.
Leg Irons - Wide rings of metal that were attached to each other and fastened around prisoner’s ankles.
Line - Any rope used on a ship, perhaps in the rigging or to tow something.
Log - A daily record written to record where a ship travels and what has happened on it.
Lookout - The person in charge of watching out for signs of land or other ships.
Loot - Gold and riches usually stolen.
Lubber or land lubber - A person who likes being on land, often used as an insult.
Man-of-War - A ship built specifically for fighting.
Marooned - Left alone, usually on a deserted island.
Mast - The upright pole on a ship that the sails and ropes are attached to.
Mate or Matey - Friend
Me - Used instead of ‘my’.
Me beauty - How you would address a pretty lady or something important to you.
Me hearties - Friends.
Merchant - A person who sells things.
Merchant Ship - A ship carrying cargo to be sold.
Mutiny - When a ship’s crew refuse to follow the captain’s orders.
Navigate - To steer and guide a ship from one place to another.
New World - America
Peg leg - An artificial leg, usually wooden.
Pieces of Eight - An old Spanish silver coin.
Pillage - To rob.
Pirate - A ‘robber of the sea’.
Plunder - To steal.
Poop deck - The floor that is also the roof of a cabin built on the upper deck.
Poop cabin - A room built on the top deck of a ship, often the Captain’s.
Port - The left side when facing the ship’s pointy end, also a strong alcoholic drink, and the area of land next to where ships are left when the pirates go ashore.
Pox - Disease.
Pressgang - To force somebody to become a member of a ship’s crew.
Privateer - English, French or Dutch sailors allowed by their Government to attack enemy ships.
Prow - The pointy end of a ship.
Quartermaster - The sailor second-in-charge to the Captain.
Rigging - The ropes, mast and sails on a ship.
Rope’s end - To whip/flog.
Rum - Said to be a pirate’s favourite alcoholic drink.
Rum - To be a little weird or odd.
Sail ho! - ‘I see a sail.’ This also means, ‘I see a ship’ because the sail is always seen first.
Salt or Old Salt - Somebody who has been a sailor for a long time.
Sea dog - Somebody who has been a sailor for a long time.
Sealegs - What you have when you’re used to the sway of boat on the ocean.
Scurvy - A disease many sailors got because they didn’t eat enough vitamin C. Also an insult, as in ‘ye scurvy landlubber’.
Scuttle - To make a hole in a ship’s hull or to sink the ship.
Shantey - The songs pirates sing while they are working. (Also spelt ‘chantey’ or ‘shanty’.)
Shanty - The songs pirates sing while they are working. (Also spelt ‘chantey’ or ‘shantey’.)
Shipshape - To be neat and tidy.
Shiver me timbers - ‘What a surprise.’
Sink me - ‘What a surprise.’
Smartly - Quickly.
Splice the mainbrace - To have an alcoholic drink or two.
Spyglass - A telescope.
Starboard - The right side of the ship (if you are facing the pointed end).
Sutler - The merchant on land who sells pirates all the supplies and things they need to repair their ship.
Swab - To clean something or a name for somebody you don’t like very much.
Swag - Gold and riches.
To be three sheets to the wind - To have drunk too much alcohol.
Titivate - To clean up and make neat.
Walk the plank - To be forced to walk along and off the end of a plank that has been placed over the side of a ship.
Weevil - A kind of beetle that can eat your food before you do.
Weigh anchor - To lift the anchor and be ready to sail.
Wench - A woman.
Ye - Used instead of ‘you’.
Yer - Used instead of ‘your’.
Welcome to me pirate dictionary me matey - the place for all of ye who wish to talk like a pirate and not sound like landlubber scum up to no good.