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Talk Like a Pirate

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Youngblood: Argh! You catch on quick for a land-lover!
Pirate Parrot: It's "lubber".
Youngblood: Really? It's "lubber"? That makes no sense!

Pirates. In Real Life, they've have been around for a very long time and come from many places across the globe. Julius Caesar fought them, and to this day, pirates are still taking ships off the coast of Somalia. Logic dictates that all these pirates be speaking in many different ways, but in Hollywood, there exists only one way pirates talk.

With an exaggerated English West Country accent. Arrr!

In fact, this trope be Newer Than They Think. The standard pirate accent is said to have been invented by Robert Newton for his role as Long John Silver in the 1950 movie Treasure Island, for which he played up his natural West Country accentnote . There even be a scene in the film where he ends a prayer with "Arrrmen"!

Edward Teach (or Edward Thatch, depending on the source), the most famous English-speaking pirate in history, is also believed to have been born in Bristol, furthering the perceived connection between pirates and the West Country.

However, it may go back further, as "Piratespeak" is somewhat of an exaggerated parody of some English rural accents of the 16th century. A "snapshot" of a moment in the language during the "Great Vowel Shift", as it were. There are some who've argued the associating of rural English accents with seafaring folk be on account of Lord Nelson, whose contemporaries noted his heavy Norfolk accent. But the standard "Poirate accent" sounds more like it be from the The West Country (Devon, Somerset, Dorset, Cornwall, Gloucestershire and Bristol), perhaps because of memories of famed Devon sailors like Sir Francis Drake and Sir Walter Raleigh. Treasure Island, which does indeed begin in that part of Englandnote , did popularise it. It also has noticeable overlap with the distinctive "Ocracoke accent" spoken by some longtime residents of the Outer Banks of North Carolina, which were similarly frequented by sailors in the 18th century; it may or may not be a coincidence that Ocracoke Island was the site of Blackbeard's last stand against the British Navy.

This trope specifically be inclusive to characters talking like pirates while obviously not being pirates, or having a pirate-themed episode or moment as a joke. However, this also includes times when a fictional pirate talks "piratey", even though he might not have in reality.

For more pirate tropes, see Dressed to Plunder, a Sister Trope for costumes, and, of course, Pirate, the Super-Trope. For the types of songs pirates typically sing, look at Pirate Song. See International Talk Like a Pirate Day as well.

Space Pirates sometimes talk like this too, although there are sometimes variants.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Arr-verted in One Piece, shockingly (with the possible exception of Gold Roger...). Though there'll probably be a future character who will abuse this to no end. It's not so shocking: Japanese has no equivalent of the Pirate Talk. Not completely avoided, though — Brook's special laugh is the old-fashioned "Yohohoho!" The English translation of the manga will occasionally add in pirate talk, actually, but not to a great extent.
    • Zigzagged be the dub o' Funimation; some of these seadogs engage in Pirate Talk, while others will chose to forego the accent like the landlubbers they are, and some of these pirates get to a full accent when the seas be storming, or when great fights take place.
    • The most prominent example is King of the Pirate Gol. D Roger himself. Very fitting given that Eiichiro Oda designed him as a very typical, traditional pirate.
  • Captain Smudge from Serendipity the Pink Dragon like this.
  • Berserk: Captain Sharkrider is made fun of for talking like this, and even lampshades that he is a walking pirate stereotype.

    Audio Plays 

    Comic Books 
  • This be the manner a speech used by rogue privateer Jim Hawkins in Lullaby. Ditto his trusty shoulder parrot Crew. "Enemy ship to stern!", indeed...
  • This also be th' gimmick a Zanzibar, one a th' deadly Dreadnoks from parts near G.I. Joe.
  • The Skull of Agarash, a graphic novel set in the Lone Wolf world, is rife with this with the Lakuri Isles pirates and Cleosian sailors.
  • This be the usual manner of speakin' for that seagoin' varlet Cap'n Fear what fights Batman fights from time to time.
  • The "Advanced Restraint Research" story arc in Empowered defies description... pirate-themed bondage fetishists operating under the acronym A.R.R... yes, really....
  • The dead-tree edition of Get Medieval includes a bonus story involving Japanese pirates:
    Pirate Leader: Ahoy, ye scurvy buggers! We be here for revenge!
    Another Pirate: An' now we're no workin' for that landlubber, we be allowed to talk like pirates!
  • The pirate captain in Asterix speaks like this. It should be noted that he is probably of French rather than Cornish origin, and living in 50BC.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics): Pretty much every villain in Blaze's home zone, though in fairness, they are pirates. Captain Metal especially, apparently having gone incredibly native after being rebuilt from a broken Metal Sonic.
  • U.S.Avengers: The time-travelling supervillain Golden Skull steals a bunch of Arcade's robots who talk like this. It leads to the Captain America of thirty years from "now" fighting off a bunch of robots going "arr" and "jim, lad" at her, even as their heads are getting knocked off.
  • Wonder Woman Vol 1: Capt. Storm and his crew talk like they've come from the film which started the trend, as amusingly do the Barnacle Gang for a brief unremarked upon bit after they discover the map to Storm's buried treasure.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Mocked in Castle in the Sky when Sheeta tries it.
  • Remarkably averted in Treasure Planet. Silver might throw out a couple "Haharrr!"s, but his accent is much more Irish than West Country, and the rest of the pirates have accents from all around the English-speaking world.
  • Mostly averted, surprisingly in the original 1953 Peter Pan movie. In which Captain Hook, despite him — especially in his appearance here — being one of the most iconic "classic pirates" in all fiction, speaks mostly RP English with scarcely any pirate sayings. He may call his crewmates "swabs" a scattered few times, say "ye" instead of "you" occasionally, and ultimately threaten the children with walking the plank, but aside from that, he's pretty much an aversion. Even his crew, despite looking and acting very much like the cartoon pirates they are, don't use much of the typical slang aside from "Yo-ho!" when they sing "The Elegant Captain Hook". To top it all off, not even one "Arr!" is heard!
  • In The Boss Baby, one of Tim's favorite fantasies is being a pirate and when he plays pirates with the Boss Baby, the Boss Baby says, "You're fired! And here's your severance package! Ha!", causing Tim to tell him that "You're not supposed to end 'Ha!' You're supposed to end with 'AAARRRGH'!"
  • Averted mostly in The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists, although you arrrrrrguably could count all the flowery, sea-themed swearings of the Pirate Captain. The one time it's played completely straight, it's Played for Drama.
    Pirate with a Scarf: You can't just say "arrr" at the end of a sentence and think that makes everything alright.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • As mentioned above, Robert Newton in Treasure Island is the Trope Codifier.
  • Jaws. After that old salt Quint got on ta givin' him a hard time, Hooper uses pirate talk, including the phrase "Jim boy".
  • Pirate Steve from DodgeBall: A True Underdog Story.
  • There's also the obscure movie Pirates of the Great Salt Lake.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
    • Aspiring Pirate Will Turner overdoes it in The Curse of the Black Pearl in his first attempt to commandeer a ship of the Queen's navy; his "Aye! Avast!!" causes general hilarity. Even Jack Sparrow gives him an incredulous look.
    • Cap'n Barbossa. "Dearly Beloved, we be gathered here today... to nail yer gizzard to the mast, yer poxy cur!" He even hangs a lampshade on it in the third movie: "No! What AARRRRRHHH ya doin'?"
    • Blackbeard also talks like this in On Stranger Tides, though he doesn't go as overboard with it as Barbossa does.
  • Painfully used in the pornographic film Pirates XXX during a Girl on Girl Is Hot scene by the pirate spectators. They stand around saying "ARRRR" during the "action".
  • Down Periscope. When Pascal is made to Walk the Plank, the crew dress like pirates and ham it up appropriately, especially The Captain (who'd been ordered by his admiral to "Think like a pirate!" when briefed on the war games).
    Dodge: Misterrr Pascarrrl, harrve you any last worrrrds before ye walk the plank, sirrr?
  • Batman: The Movie. Has a strange variation where the Penguin occasionally throws in talk of cutlasses and so on, but he and his "pirates" talk recognizably like cartoonish, but contemporary, naval officers and sailors while operating the submarine, except in statements when they would say "aye, aye (cap'n)" in correct pirate speak (or just "aye" used similarly in contemporary speech), they say "yo-ho" instead. E.g., Penguin: "Now hear this: Mr Joker, load the torpedo tubes" Joker: "yo-ho, load the torpedo tubes".
    • Yo-ho is also in correct pirate form (to raise someone's attention) once by the sonar technician: "Yo-ho!!" "what?" "Unidentified small craft bearing 1-1-3", but is used to mean "aye" again right after: "Hold her steady, up periscope" "yo-ho!, up periscope."
  • In the Popeye movie, Bluto does a pirate growl at one point during his Villain Song, but otherwise mostly avoids this. At one point in his number, Poopdeck Pappy does a "yo-ho" note .

  • A pirate ship runs aground during a storm. One of the sailors is washed ashore and soon sees his captain, the ship's wheel embedded in his groin. "Cap'n, be that the ship's wheel in your nethers?" "Yarr, 'tis drivin' me nuts!"
  • Why wasn't the 11-year-old allowed to see the pirate movie? Because it was rated Arr!
  • What's a pirate's favorite letter? [listener typically guesses 'R'] Nay, ye may think that, but his first love be the 'C.'

  • Treasure Island, the arr-example, as mentioned above.
  • The Spellsinger book, Day of the Dissonance has a Pirate Parrot that talks like this.
  • Redwall
    • Searat pirates all talk like this, thanks to the Funetik Aksent abundance, as do other vermin in the pirate business. It's not far removed from the "generic" villain talk, it just has a lot more nautical terms thrown in.
    • One book has a hare accompany a Master of Disguise into a searat camp and try a searat accent. The other one winces (hares have a markedly refined way of speaking inspired by WWII Royal Air Force pilots) and tells him that he'll be his mute assistant.
  • George MacDonald Fraser's novel The Pyrates:
    • Practically the entire cast is Genre Savvy. The pirates know their metier and they stick to it:
      "Vittles, sez you!" cried the captain, rolling both eyes. "Why, then vittles it is, sez I, wi' all my heart, aye, an' a flagon o'ale, devil a doubt, or Spanish vino, sa-ah! to wet our whistles, an' damn all, wi' a curse. Scupper me wi' a handspike." he added triumphantly. "else."
    • One of the pirates speaks with a thick Welsh accent, but he's a one-joke character specifically put in to parody the labor union militancy that was common in Britain when the novel was written. Jokes about the Nautical Union of Piratical Employees striking in support of Red Robbo are just part of the deliberate Anachronism Stew in this novel.
  • Subverted, or at least general "sea talk" is subverted, in Jingo. A ship's captain tells Vimes "That yo-ho-ho stuff's for landlubbers, or at least it would be if we actually used words like landlubber. We don't say port and starboard. I've never even drunk starboard!" Part of this is just the captain twitting the profoundly non-nautical Vimes, though. After seeing Vimes throw the anchor and the ship's boats overboard to increase their speed and being told "to put on the brakes" to stop an imminent shipwreck on a lee shore, the captain is driven to use the word "landlubber" in legitimate anger for the first time in his life.
  • Miya Black, Pirate Princess speaks like an educated and intelligent fourteen-year-old princess... unless she's really fired up, in which case she drops into pirate speak.
  • The Pirate Primer, by George Choundas, is an actual guide for layman on how to Talk Like a Pirate and includes phrases found in many books, films, and television shows, as well as a few Real Life examples. Incidentally, there's an entire chapter devoted to all the subtle nuances behind "Arrgh!"
  • In Mark Delewen and the Space Pirates, the only pirate lines consist of variations of 'Arr!'. Seriously.
  • In Fortunately, the Milk, the protagonist gets captured by pirates who use a lot of words like "keelhauled", "landlubber", and "scurvy dog".

    Live-Action TV 
  • Those lily-livered landlubbers in Monty Python did Long John Silver impersonations in several Flying Circus sketches, arrrhh.
  • Adam talking like a pirate is sort of a pseudo-Running Gag in MythBusters, and he gets to do it to his heart's content in the episode showcasing pirate myths. His pirate accent, however, is not the stereotypical Robert Newton pirate accent, but, well... it's hard to be sure what it is, actually.
  • Newscommentator Keith Olbermann talks like this, for no particularly clear reason, when imitating Rupert Murdoch. But not Ann Coulter, even though his picture of her has an eyepatch and he calls her "Pirate Annie".
  • Doctor Who:
    • In "The Infinite Quest", the Doctor and Martha talk like pirates through Private Kelvin's communicator to avert a battle that is about to happen. The Doctor does all the pirate talk, while Martha just goes "Arr... Arr Arr..." and the Doctor tells her to stop doing that.
    • In "Curse of the Black Spot", when pirates find the Doctor, Amy and Rory in the hold:
      The Doctor: Yo ho ho! [Beat] Or does anyone actually say that?
  • Forever: In "Dead Men Tell Long Tales" the case involves a team of treasure hunters retrieving goods from a sunken ship. Lucas makes several comments in a stereotypical Hollywood pirate voice, most of them bad puns, much to Henry's dismay.
  • Xander goes as a pirate for Hallowe'en in Buffy the Vampire Slayer's fifth season episode "All the Way". As for talking like a pirate...
    Xander: Store go boom... Arr.
  • The infamous Saturday Night Live sketch in which a pirate convention (held at the Ritz Carrrrlton) hired actor Peter Saarsgaard to be their keynote speaker simply because of all the "arrrr"s in his name. Yes, this WAS the best joke they could come up with featuring Peter Saarsgaard.
  • Captain Redbeard Rum (Tom Baker) talks this way in the Blackadder 2 episode "Potato", although technically he isn't a pirate. He even introduces himself with a truly incredible: "AAAAaaaaaaAAAAAaaaaAAAARRaaarrrrrrhhhhhh... me laddie!"
    Rum: Opinion is divided on whether it is customary for a ship to have a crew. All the other captains say 'tis; I say 'tisn't.
    • Everybody else takes to talking like this as well, to greater or lesser effect. Queenie and Melchett just say nauctical stuff in their regular voices, while Baldrick and Edmund join Rum in a round of "Aaar!-ing". Sir Walter Raleigh, however, despite being why everyone's pretending to be a salty sea-dog, doesn't understand a word of it.
  • The "pirate episode" of Charmed is noteworthy for its title alone: "Charrrmed".
  • In the Haven episode "Burned," a little girl uses her Compelling Voice to turn Duke into her playmate. She decides they should play pirates, and of course Duke, the Venturous Smuggler who lives on the cargo boat he uses to transport contraband, affects a flawless accent.
  • Marshall as a gay pirate in How I Met Your Mother.
    Marshall: What be a pirate's favourite kind of sweater?
    Lily: Arr-gyle!
    Marshall: And what be a pirate's favourite fast food restaurant?
    Lily: Arr-by's!
    Marshall: 'twould think it would be Arby's... but actually it's Long John Silver's.
  • For some reason, on the short-lived 1998 revival of Match Game, announcer Paul Boland always said panelist Nell Carter's voice in a pirate growl ("Nell Carrrrrterrrrrrr").
  • Rutland Weekend Television: When George Harrison made a guest appearance, he came on stage in full pirate gear and doing this trope, only to be disappointed when he was informed there was no pirate sketch. After several small appearances throughout the episode where he persists in trying to be a pirate, he finally appears at the end, dressed normally, to sing as he was invited to. He and the band play the full intro to "My Sweet Lord"... and then he breaks out into a song about pirates.
  • Surprisingly averted in Black Sails. Nautical slang is kept to a minimum, and none of the characters speak with a West Country accent, not even Blackbeard, for whom it would have historically made sense.

  • Alestorm, being a pirate-themed band, sings like this. Except with a Scottish accent rather than Cornish.
  • Whenever Paul and Storm play their song "The Captain's Wife's Lament", they have the audience shout "Yarr!" at various points. There's also some pirate speak in the lyrics.
  • The Great Luke Ski sings his Jack Sparrow tribute song "You Don't Know Jack" in piratey vernacular, complete with a Lampshade Hanging when he talks of his plans to burn the song onto a "CD-ARRRRRR!"
  • Captain Dan and the Scurvy Crew, a pirate-themed hip hop group ("Authentic pirate hip hop", if you will), features rhyming with excessive use of pirate-speak, songs combining gangsta rap with pirating, and party commands such as "Throw your hooks in the air!", and uses of "Arr!" or "Yar!" in place of more common words, such as "What" and "Yeah".
  • In Ray Stevens' "The Pirate Song", he voices two characters: a typical "arrrr!" type pirate who is frustrated at a normal-voiced pirate who wants to abandon his ways to sing and dance instead.
  • "Talk like a Pirate Day"
  • "Shiver Me Timbers" from Tom Waits' The Heart of Saturday Night.
  • Jokey Canadian musician Captain Tractor does a few Arrhhs and even heave-ho-s in his satirical farmer-turned-pirate song "The Last Saskatchewan Pirate". More of a subversion, as it's not particularly overused.

    Myths & Religion 

  • The pirates on the "Skulduggery" table of Full Tilt! Pinball aren't ashamed to pull out all the hoary old pirate quotes.
    "Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!"
  • The titular Black Rose talks like this, albeit without the accent.
  • "ARRRRR Frenzy" in Pirates of the Caribbean (Jersey Jack) plays an "ARRRRR!" sound bite upon every switch hit.

    Puppet Shows 

  • The Million Pound Radio Show: "Us pirates wants us a training day!"
  • The Cruise of the Poll Parrot was a children's serial from the 1937-1938 which featured quite a bit of nautical-speak.

  • Open Blue's help topics tend to shift into and out of it. Depends on the mood, apparently.

  • The anti-virus program Avast! has a pirate language option that they remind you of when Talk Like a Pirate Day rolls around. Whether or not it is turned off afterwards is up to you.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Captain Kraken in Mutants & Masterminds talks like this because he learned English from Hollywood pirate movies. He can be played as everything from a serious threat (evil squid-faced Space Pirate) to comic relief (evil squid-faced Space Pirate who refers to his opponents as "scurvy dogs").
  • This is the speech pattern of Captain Cutthroat, a "stereotypical pirate" villain from Wasteland 2010.


  • Beast Wars: Uprising: Scylla, as a joke on her origins (since Scylla in Beast Wars II was part of the Seacon Pirates).

    Video Games 
  • AdventureQuest
    • Captain Rhubarb does this all the time in both Adventure Quest and DragonFable, as do most minor pirate characters.
    • Captain Frolgar in Adventure Quest and its expansion WarpForce speaks with a pirate accent, as well as having a traditional pirate look.
    • Karlina and Jayson, two Space Pirates in WarpForce, speak with a pirate accent.
      Karlina: Methinks this scurvy bilge rat is making a fool of ye, Jayson.
      Jayson: Aye. Perhaps we should make these two walk the plank into the fusion coolant, eh, Karlina?
      Karlina: Yaaarrr!!
  • In APICO, Skipper and his father talk like pirates, even as modern-day sailors. The former even calls you "matey" when you first dock on the APICO islands.
  • Around the World in 80 Days: The captain in USA uses pirate words like "ye" and "shiver me timbers", since he believes he is a pirate.
  • In Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, there is a cheat to make it so every line from Edward's mouth is "full of stereotypical pirate clichés." Otherwise, the trope is mostly averted, with the Pirates from the British Isles demonstrating a wide range of accents, from Edward's Welsh, to Yorkshire, Norfolk and Irish. The only one who comes close is Edward "Blackbeard" Thatch, who was in Real Life a native Bristolian and therefore probably did speak like that. His multiplayer incarnation invokes this:
    Blackbeard: Arrrr! Ahoy matey! Shiver me timbers! All that pirate drivel the tourists are always asking me to repeat. Bollocks.
  • In BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Ragna's Gag Reel, Robot Girl Nu appears as a Ghost Pirate Girl who's speaking like a Valley Girl.
    Nu: Like, aye-aye, matey!
    Ragna: Nu, for the love of god, the valley or the sea... just pick one.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Chaos Bleeds featured an Hilarious Outtakes reel in which Nicholas Brendon improvs some piratey lines in reference to the Buffy episode mentioned above.
    "Arr! There be monsters!"
  • Subverted in Discworld Noir, in which a sailor on the Milka initially speaks to Lewton in stereotypical pirate accent and sea-dog jargon, but quits hamming it up when Lewton calls him on it.
  • In fitting with the pirate-styled theme of the game, Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest features Klubba, the guardian of the entrance to the Lost World, who speaks with a heavy pirate accent. He'll shout threats of death and violence at you, and bat you back with his massive spiked club if you try to fight him, but pay his toll and he'll suddenly be your best friend.
    Klubba: Now 'ear this, landlubbers! Me name is Klubba, an' to cross this bridge is gonna cost yer many pieces o' eight! An' if yers don't pay up, I'll run yer through like the scurvy dogs ye are, A-harrr!
  • Empire Earth: Pre-modern ships use various takes on pirate accents even millenia before the idea of Arrr-ing pirates comes along. (others just go with a standard British accent, especially as the Age Of Sail approaches).
  • Leila in Final Fantasy II talks like this, but to a far less absurd degree than the infamous case of...
  • The first official English translation of Final Fantasy V had Faris speaking like this. The retranslation toned it down to a rougher mode of speech and exclamations like "By the briny beard o' Neptune!"
  • Naturally, when Foxy of Five Nights at Freddy's fame was given the opportunity to speak in Ultimate Custom Night, he spoke entirely in pirate slang.
  • Garry's Mod now features the ability to choose your language, along with Pirate language like the Minecraft example above.
  • Mocked in Kid Icarus: Uprising, where one level takes place aboard a space pirate space ship. Upon encountering the pirate captain, who Pit can't understand:
    Cap'n: (honks and growls)
    Pit: I have no idea what he's saying.
    Palutena: He's like, "Yar, I'll make ye walk the space plank, scurvy dog! (beat) That's just a loose translation."
    Pit: Oh man...not the space plank!
  • Kingdom of Loathing:
    • The Can of Binarrrca gives you the "Talking Like a Pirate" status effect, which randomly adds "Yarrr", "Arrr", "Avast ye!", or "Ahoy, Matey!" to the end of your messages in chat.
    • Kingdom of Loathing Abuses this to no end. If there's anything to do with pirates that has an ar in it, there will be more r's. even if it is not traditionally associated with pirates, like the Safarrri Hat.
  • Gonzo in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker talks a little bit like this. Subverted in that everyone else on the ship speaks normally, especially Tetra, which is justified, because you can't have Princess Zelda saying "Arrrhh" after every other sentence. That'd be just ridiculous.
  • Captain of the Ghost Ship in MediEvil talks like this, and his mooks' battle cries are made of "arrs" and "yahoors". Sole exception is the ship's first mate, who speaks in more sophisticated tone.
  • The 1.1 Update for Minecraft has an option to change your language. Naturally, Pirate Speak is one of the options.
  • Surprisingly little of this in the Monkey Island series, where accents are all across the map. Possibly the creators didn't want any bit characters to out-ham LeChuck. There are some examples, though, notably in the insult sword-fighting sequence in the first game, complete with a lampshade:
    Guybrush: Why do you talk so funny, anyway?
    Pirate: It's how everybody talked back then. Come on, Guybrush, play along!
    • If you want to talk about characters who suddenly pull a pirate accent out of nowhere in this case, look no further than Marlon Rimes.
  • Despite pirates not appearing in Napoleon: Total War, British Admirals have a tendency to say something to the effect of "PREPARE FOR ACTION, YOU SCURVY DOGS!" made especially weird when the admiral saying that is Horatio Nelson note . Who has a Fowl-Mouthed Parrot...
  • Neverwinter Nights demo module "Thar be Rats! Yarrr!" It seems Uncle Fester was an ex-piratey.
    "Yarrr! This here be yer demo of dat filthy beast der rat! Arrr!"
  • Paper Mario:
    • Averted in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door. The undead pirate Cortez has a Spanish accent, befitting his name.
    • Played straight in Paper Mario: Color Splash. The Toad captain in Violet Passage speaks with an exaggerated pirate accent. He eventually meets a legendary pirate captain, who tells him to stop talking that way.
    Toad Captain: So, ye be this... Mario, eh? The Mario who saved this vessel, me crew, and yars truly? Wish I could give ye a reward, but me thanks'll have to do. I owe ye one.
  • In the DLC case of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies, the crime scene is a part of the 'Shipshape Aquarium', which has a pirate theme. This runs to a show put on there where every speaking character puts on this pirate accent, which gets ridiculous when talking to the lead of the show when she spontaneously gets into character and pulls out this accent.
  • In Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire, many of the Principi, the local pirate alliance, and pirate party member Serafen. They also swear like sailors. The exact strength of the "piratical" accent varies from character to character, and some of the old guard speak with Afro-Italian-ish Vailian accents instead; the Principi were founded by Vailians, after all.
  • The MMORPG Pirates of the Caribbean Online, bein' run by them scab'rous swabs at Disney, needs to protect the wee young flotsam from the filthy language of other foulmouthed buccaneers, and changes words that aren't "recognized" by the chat servers dictionary into "arrr". (Ye can turn this option off though, making this swashbuckler wonder just what they think they be achievin' with it.)
  • Most every time you click or order the crew in Pixel Piracy, they break out into ye olde pirate speake, "YO-HO-HO"s and "ARRRR"s abound.
  • The Online multiplayer puzzle game Puzzle Pirates has most of its lines in this style. There's even an option to hide swear words and convert them to piratey swears, like "Billions of blisterin' barnacles!"
  • For entirely unknown reasons that only contribute to his Ensemble Dark Horse status, the Merchant in Resident Evil 4 gets a distinctly pirate-y accent in the English dub.
  • Subverted in RuneScape, where the actual pirates mock the player when they speak like that.
  • Parodied in the Runescape quest Cabin Fever, where the player character crews the pirate ship The Adventurous, captained by Bill Teach (another captain threatened to sink the ship, so all the actual sailors wouldn't go near it). The PC tries talking like this the entire quest, and it drives Teach, a real pirate who speaks normally, up the wall.
  • Redbeard's Ghost in Scooby-Doo: Night of a Hundred Frights does this as his Boss Banter.
  • Shadow Gambit: The Cursed Crew: Out of many pirates in the game, Captain Mordechai has the most typical pirate speech, and he even gives us the occasional "Arrr!"
  • If'n ye be playin' Sid Meier's Pirates! on International Talk Like a Pirate Day, then all o' the characters in the game, even the comely governors' daughters, be talkin' like this. That's what landlubbers call an Easter Egg, Boyo.
  • One of the randomly-scheduled holidays in The Sims 4: Seasons is "talk like a pirate day", where several pie menu interactions are replaced with pirate-themed phrases.
  • Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves features Sly having to visit a town that intentionally throws itself back to 'pirate times'. The pirates talk like this, and Sly has to imitate it at one point.
  • Oddly enough, most be averted in Skies of Arcadia, with the exception of Drachma, the grumpy old fisherman.
  • Sonic Rush Adventure: Captain Whisker be his name, and thieving be his game!
    Mini: O mighty evil, come fourth into this world!
    Mum: Rule the seven seas!
    Mini: Justice is not welcome! Kindness is weakness!
    Mun: Master of evil, show unto us those mighty whiskers!
    Whisker: And so, it is I! The Dread Pirate Whisker! D'arr har har har!!
  • Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood be hangin' a gigantic lampshade on it when the gang runs into some Space Pirates:
    Pirate: Harr! Give up yer booty, yer cargo is ours now!
    Rouge: Why is he talking like that?
    Sonic: Who knows? Just go with it.
    Pirate: Hand it over, lubbers! Or ye'll be forced to walk the plank!
    Rouge: Seriously. Why would a pirate from another dimension talk like that?
    Pirate: Arr, this be just how I talk! Now—
    Rouge: This is stupid.
    Pirate: Aye. A speech impediment it be. We gonna fight, or not?
  • Cubot in a cutscene from Sonic Colors when he first gets his voice chip changed.
  • Averted with Cervantes in the earlier games of Soul Series, but by Soul Calibur III, he too developed a nautical tone with promises of "watery graves".
  • The Zoness boss in Star Fox 64 talks like this. He even laughs this way as well:
    Har-har, ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-har!!
  • Played for laughs in Uncharted 4: A Thief's End where Nate is explaining to Elena how does the founders of Libertalia died.
    Nate: Avery makes a grand toast.
    Nate: [raises cup] For God and Liberty! Argh. Ahoy. Mateys. All that.
    [Elena chuckled]
    Nate: And they all take a swig except these two. And just like that (snaps finger) all the treasure of Libertalia become the sole possession of two men.
  • The Ork freebooterz in Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Retribution, led by Kaptin Bluddflagg, talk not only like pirates (southwest of England), but also like Orks (lower-class Londoners). The good Kaptin himself occasionally has half an Irish accent and is all the more beloved for it.
  • Pirates in World of Warcraft often talk this way (and are almost always Dressed to Plunder), the most notable example being Tethys, the admiral of the Bloodsail - who are definitely not Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. Rogues interact with him quite a bit during their class-specific campaign in Legion, and get plenty of dialogue, including a fair number of voiced catch phrases.
  • In Xenoblade Chronicles 3, Triton, Consul and Commander of Colony 15, speaks with a thick West Country accent, and peppers his speech with nautical turns of phrase, such as describing himself as a 'man of the sea'. The top of his Moebius helmet even takes the shape of a tricorne hat. Downplayed with Fiona, Commander of Colony Mu across the Erythia Sea from Colony 15, who also speaks with a West Country accent and wears a sailor-inspired outfit but otherwise lacks the more flamboyant and overtly pirate-like attributes of Triton.
  • Spoofed in zOMG! when an NPC dressed as a pirate disses you in Pirate Speak, and dialogue options include replying in kind. After exchanging enough quips, he says this:
    "Arrr! Ye win! I've nae more insults!"

    Web Animation 
  • Plan 3: The cursed pirate talks like your average salty sea-farin’ sailor, right up to his Surprisingly Sudden Death.
    Cursed Pirate: Bad luck is around every corner my matey, so be careful, because your next step just might be your la-ARR!
  • Red vs. Blue: When Tex and Church go inside Caboose's mind, the version of Sarge (who normally has a Deep South accent) they find does this.
    "Arr, I be havin' a southern accent. Yarr."
  • Russell, from Happy Tree Friends, is perhaps the most extreme version of this. The characters in the show are mostly unintelligible, and Russell is no exception: his entire vocabulary consists mainly of the word "Yarr!"
  • The main Villain in X-Ray & Vav, The Corpirate (based on Achievement Hunter's WWE'13 Let's Play ), has a strong pirate accent, despite him being a CEO-like character.
  • In Foxy Gets Hooked, Foxy has a switch on the back of his neck with "Poncy Brit" and "Pirate" settings. He switches to the latter once he gets his Hook Hand.
    Pirate Foxy: Yarr, I guess you could say this voice was pirated, yo ho ho!
  • In Inanimate Insanity, Bandana has got pirate lingo! Arrrrrrrr!


    Web Original 
  • Time was, the main TV Tropes page were changed ta pirate speak, for Talk Like a Pirate Day. If'n ye should belive in such tales, talk be heard that th'incident be archived yet still somewhar 'pon this very wiki... AND THAR BE A GHOST IN IT or some such.
  • Facebook has an English(Pirate) language setting. In this setting, the language choice setting is called "DON'T TOUCH THIS".
  • As does Google.
  • "Captain Highliner" talks about the worst team of the National Hockey League's New York Islanders (given both the name and an infamous logo that resembled the Gorton's fisherman, adequate).
  • Squeen the Thief in Hello, from the Magic Tavern talks like a pirate, but he's not a pirate, he's just a plain old thief. No, just because he also has an eyepatch, a hook hand, a pegleg, a parrot on his shoulder, and a three-cornered hat, that doesn't make him a pirate. And the fact that he owns a ship and wants to be bruied at sea is just a coincidence, really.

    Web Videos 
  • Instructions can be found here.
  • Whenever Achievement Hunter play Sea of Thieves, they talk like pirates. For the whole video. Accompanied by piratey names—Jeremy is Captain Shortbeard, Jack is Navigator Jack (despite being noted as the helmsman, not the navigator), Michael is Peg-Pecker, Ryan is Willy Two-Legs, and Gavin is The Sea-Sniffer. Geoff, however, puts on a country bumpkin accent for the role of Pirate Geoff, despite (or perhaps because of) his previous role as the Corpirate (see Web Animation).
  • Afterlife SMP: Enigma Lizzie uses a stereotypical pirate accent in her disguise as Captain Lizzie.
    Joel: (as everyone else laughs) You sound like you're from... Cornwall.
    Lizzie: (in her normal accent) I'm a Cornish pirate.
  • In Freeman's Mind, Freeman spends episode 27 talking like this, though his throat is too sore to continue after the episode is over.
  • In The Guild, there is a restaurant called Cheesy Beards. The waitress the team keeps running into gives the most deadpan and exhausted "Yarrg, welcome to Cheesybeards." She clearly has to sounds like a pirate - a lot, and is bored to death with it.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Wife: Chance talks like a pirate in the episode "I Be Her Bear" when he "kidnaps" his wife Simone from work for a little maritime adventure. Simone's boss Vincent joins him in the fun and also talks like a sailor/pirate.
    Chance: Yarrr! Ha! Ha! Ha! YARRR, me matey. Ha-ha-ha, I'll be looking for a pirate wench who's ready for some high adventure.
  • While Ye Novelty Desire have no Space Pirates, at least one of ye Stormtroopers appear to talk like one.
    A ST ER ORMTROOP: A. Setting the stern.

    Western Animation 
  • Captain Zelza from The Adventures of Teddy Ruxpin talks like this.
  • Binky from Arthur does it in "S.W.E.A.T.", me hearties. When asked about it, he says it is International Talk Like a Pirate Day. Arr, when he continues the next day Mr. Ratburn tells him that it is no longer International Talk Like a Pirate Day so he should cut it out.
  • Your backyard friends, The Backyardigans, talk this way in the various episodes where they imagine themselves to be pirates.
  • The 2006 revival of Biker Mice from Mars had this happen in the episode "Swimming with Sharks", where Vinnie's aunt Mago is revealed to be a Space Pirate and talks like a pirate to her crew. Modo asks why she talks this way when she is in fact a scientist and Mago replies that she only talks this way because her crew likes it when she does.
  • In Captain Pugwash, Pugwash's Arch-Enemy Cut-Throat Jake, who is a far more ruthless and successful pirate than Pugwash, speaks with a stereotypical West Country accent, and sports an eye patch and enormous black beard.
  • Codename: Kids Next Door: Candy Pirate Stickybeard and his crew are Dressed to Plunder and talk like this all the time.
  • Danny Phantom: Youngblood dresses like a pirate, commands a pirate crew, has a Pirate Parrot, but can't speak the pirate lingo despite his best efforts. This becomes a Running Gag for the entire episode.
  • DuckTales (1987): Quackerbill, the Old Sea Dog in "Merit-Time Adventure", manages to inflect every other word with some form of:
    Captain Mallard: My first mate Quackerbill was swallowed alive, which means he no longer is. You all sailed with good old Quackerbill! Remember what he always used to say?
    Entire Room: ARRR...
    Captain Mallard: Besides that!
  • The Fairly OddParents!: Cosmo does this when playing pirate with Timmy in one of the Oh Yeah! Cartoons shorts.
  • Captain Seamus from Family Guy. Also Peter in the episode "Long John Peter".
  • Garfield does this when he and Odie dress like pirates for Halloween in Garfield's Halloween Adventure. Odie even tries to do a pirate growl at one point ("R-arr!").
  • Yo, ho ho! Jake and the Never Land Pirates. One of the show's songs is titled after the trope name as well.
  • Dr. Drakken is possessed by a pirate in an episode of Kim Possible. He speaks like a Pirate while the Pirate is in charge of his body. Shego, not being possessed, tries speaking like this to the pirates at the end... she fails.
    Shego: ... Argh, be to get them, me h—... hardlies?
  • That ol' salty sea dog Captain K'nuckles from The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack.
  • Miraculous Ladybug: Juleka's mother Anarka talks like a pirate, to have fun with the fact that she lives on a houseboat.
  • Molly of Denali: In "Unsinkable Molly Mabray," the kids build their own sailboat and subsequently talk like pirates.
    Tooey: Ahoy, captain!
    Trini: Avast, me hearties! Yo ho!
  • In one episode of The Mr. Men Show, Mr. Stubborn (although not dressed as a pirate) calls Miss Helpful "landlubber." Another episode is about pirates.
  • PAW Patrol:
    • The Patrol themselves used this in "Sea Patrol: Pirate Pups To The Rescue", where they went on a mission dressed as pirates.
    • Also commonly used by the actual pirates, Sid Swashbuckle and first mate Arrby.
  • In "Danny's Pirate Party" from Peppa Pig, Peppa and her friends attend a pirate-themed party dressing up as pirates (except for Pedro, who has dressed a cowboy to be different), and Granddad Dog gets in on the fun by dressing up as a pirate also and asking to be called "Dogbeard." However, when he talks like a pirate trying to explain a game he's made up, the kids can't understand him, forcing him to speak more normally.
    Dogbeard: Here be the plan. Time was, I had a heap of gold was mine by right, but I was hornswaggled by one Captain Hog.
    Suzy Sheep: What?
    Narrator: Pirate talk is a bit difficult to understand.
    Dogbeard: Captain Hog took my treasure.
    Kids: Oh.
  • Popeye does this occasionally, using phrases like "Ahoy", and "avast". It's a bit more prominent in the movie.
  • Ready Jet Go!: Lillian does this at some points in "That's One Gigantic Pumpkin, Jet Propulsion!" as part of her Halloween costume.
  • Avast tharr, maties! Arrrr'nt we forgettin' Captain Capacitor the Crimson Binome, an' his scurvy crew o' software pirates from ReBoot.
  • A one-off gag in Sealab 2021 suggests this is how Gay Guy Lance naturally speaks, and he just affects the stereotypical 'gay' accent.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Captain McCallister.
    McCallister: Arr, I hate the sea, and everything in it!
    • Blackbeard has exactly the same voice during his Treehouse of Horror appearance.
      Blackbeard: [examining writing] Arr, 'tis some kind of treasure map!
      Benedict Arnold: You idiot, you can't read!
      Blackbeard: Aye, 'tis true. My debauchery was my way of compensatin'!
  • SpongeBob SquarePants has Mr. Krabs, Patchy the Pirate, the Flying Dutchman, and many more. There even be a pirate-themed episode titled "Arrgh!", which does parody this trope. SpongeBob tries to warn Mr. Krabs of danger, but says "argh" between each word, delaying the actually important information he needs to say.
  • Star Trek: Lower Decks: In "We'll Always Have Tom Paris", in order to blend in among Orion pirates, Tendi advises Mariner to talk like a pirate. She tries this, getting her weird looks from the Orions.
  • Salty the diesel from Thomas & Friends.
  • Total Drama:
    • Chris puts up a heavy pirate accent for the treasure hunt challenge in "Search and Do Not Destroy".
    • In "Celebrity Manhunt's TDA Reunion Show", Harold gets the idea to attack the Total Drama Dirtbags bus with a makeshift catapult because that's a tactic he learned at pirate camp. His friends set up the weapon and Harold switches to pirate lingo when he gives the order to attack.
    • Owen is made captain and given a viking hat to symbolize it during the naval warfare portion of the challenge in "Sweden Sour". Hyped up by the status, Owen orders his team to talk like vikings, which he kickstarts by talking like a pirate. Duncan and Alejandro don't bother to correct him and put on the same accent. It's only when they're close to losing that Alejandro tells Duncan to stop talking like a pirate and that's when Owen realizes his mix-up.
    • Chris puts up a heavy pirate accent for the treasure hunt challenge in "The Bold and the Booty-ful".
  • The Pirate Captain from The Venture Bros. talks — how else? — like a pirate.
  • Zak Storm: Out of the pirate group "the 7C's", Calabrass is the only one who actually talks like a pirate.

    Real Life 
  • In 1995, Ol' Chumbucket and Cap'n Slappy be introducin' to the world an Innernation'l Talk Like a Pirate Day on September 19th, so all humanity be talkin' like a pirate fer one glorious day.
  • Considering many pirates, including Blackbeard,Henry Avery, and Samuel Bellamy came from the south west of England, Robert Newton was pretty much spot on with the accent. Sir Francis Drake, from Devon, is privateer example.
  • Mad Cap'n Tom be standin' for Parleyment in the 2010 UK General Election. For some reason he only be gettin' 84 votes though.
    • Partly because he be accidentally splitting the pirate vote mateys.
  • In some regions of Michigan, the "R" sound is pronounced like a pirate's "arr".
  • There's a kind of cheese made in Cornwall called Yarg. The 17th-century recipe was recorded by a fellow from Nottinghamshire and its name only dates to the 1970s, but it certainly sounds like something you'd expect to see Blackbeard washing down with a mug o' cider.



Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): To Arr Is Pirate


Ahoy there Samurai!

The future king of the pirates, vs the samurai who'll become the Shogun of Wano.

How well does it match the trope?

4.56 (9 votes)

Example of:

Main / CoolVersusAwesome

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