Ahoy there, mate! Welcome aboard the Dark Maelstrom, scourge of the Seven Seas. Almost be as bad as her captain, Captain Juan Rodriguez Stone. This code be posted on each deck of his 3 ships. The Dark Thunder, White Navigator, or Sea Destroyer. To see the "code" look on the door of grand cabin of each ship. Also, remember the punishments for breaking the "code" be worse than ye think. Captain Juan Stone (I) be a pirate lord on the S.P.A. (Secret Pirate Association).
Vowing the the Agreement
Each crew member is asked to sign or make their mark on the articles, then swear an oath of allegiance or honour. The oath was sometimes taken on a Bible, but if ye lack a Bible, swear on an axe. Ye can also swear on crossed pistols, swords, or on a human skull, or astride a cannon. This act formally inducts the signer into the pirate crew, generally entitling them to vote for officers and on other "affairs of moment," to bear arms, and to their share of the plunder.
Articles of Agreement
Each article be passed down by very important piratical figures. Breaking these rules be resulting in punishment. The punishments be listed at the bottom of the articles. Here be the "code" and the people it be passed down by at the time. Be wary of these rules, for they could cost ye yer life.
Captain Juan Rodriguez Stone
Every man has a vote in affairs of moment; has equal title to the fresh provisions, or strong liquors, at any time seized, and may use them at pleasure, unless a scarcity (not an uncommon thing among them) makes it necessary, for the good of all, to vote a retrenchment.
Every man to be called fairly in turn, by list, on board of prizes because, (over and above their proper share) they were on these occasions allowed a shift of clothes: but if they defrauded the company to the value of a dollar in plate, jewels, or money, marooning was their punishment. If the robbery was only betwixt one another, they contented themselves with slitting the ears and nose of him that was guilty, and set him on shore, not in an uninhabited place, but somewhere, where he was sure to encounter hardships.
No person to game at cards or dice for money.
The lights and candles to be put out at eight o'clock at night: if any of the crew, after that hour still remained inclined for drinking, they were to do it on the open deck.
To keep their piece, pistols, and cutlass clean and fit for service.
No boy or woman to be allowed amongst them. If any man were to be found seducing any of the latter sex, and carried her to sea, disguised, he was to suffer death; (so that when any fell into their hands, as it chanced in the onslaught, they put a sentinel immediately over her to prevent ill consequences from so dangerous an instrument of division and quarrel; but then here lies the roguery; they contend who shall be sentinel, which happens generally to one of the greatest bullies, who, to secure the lady's virtue, will let none lie with her but himself.)
To desert the ship or their quarters in battle, was punished with death or marooning.
No striking one another on board, but every man's quarrels to be ended on shore, at sword and pistol. (The quarter-master of the ship, when the parties will not come to any reconciliation, accompanies them on shore with what assistance he thinks proper, and turns the disputant back to back, at so many paces distance; at the word of command, they turn and fire immediately, (or else the piece is knocked out of their hands). If both miss, they come to their cutlasses, and then he is declared the victor who draws the first blood.)
No man to talk of breaking up their way of living, till each had shared one thousand pounds. If in order to this, any man should lose a limb, or become a cripple in their service, he was to have eight hundred dollars, out of the public stock, and for lesser hurts, proportionately.
The captain and quartermaster to receive two shares of a prize: the master, boatswain, and gunner, one share and a half, and other officers one and quarter.
The musicians to have rest on the Sabbath Day, but the other six days and nights, none without special favour.
Captain John Phillip’s
Every man shall obey civil command; the captain shall have one full share and a half of all prizes; the master, carpenter, boatswain and gunner shall have one share and quarter.
If any man shall offer to run away, or keep any secret from the company, he shall be marooned with one bottle of powder, one bottle of water, one small arm, and shot.
If any man shall steal any thing in the company, or game, to the value of a piece of eight, he shall be marooned or shot.
If any time we shall meet another marooner that man shall sign his articles without the consent of our company, shall suffer such punishment as the captain and company shall think fit
That Man that shall strike another whilst these Articles are in force, shall receive Moses’s Law (that is, 40 Stripes lacking one) on the bare Back.
That man that shall snap his arms, or smoke tobacco in the hold, without a cap to his pipe, or carry a candle lighted without a lanthorn, shall suffer the same punishment as in the former article.
That man shall not keep his arms clean, fit for an engagement, or neglect his business, shall be cut off from his share, and suffer such other punishment as the captain and the company shall think fit.
If any man shall lose a joint in time of an engagement, shall have 400 pieces of eight ; if a limb, 800.
If at any time you meet with a prudent woman, that man that offers to meddle with her, without her consent, shall suffer present death.
Edward Low & George Lowther
March 28, 1722
The captain is to have two full Shares; the quartermaster is to have one share and one half; the doctor, mate, gunner and boatswain, one share and one quarter.
He that shall be found guilty of taking up any unlawful weapon on board the privateer or any other prize by us taken, so as to strike or abuse one another in any regard, shall suffer what punishment the captain and the majority of the company shall see fit.
He that shall be found guilty of cowardice in the time of engagements, shall suffer what punishment the captain and the majority of the company shall think fit.
If any gold, jewels, silver, &c. be found on board of any prize or prizes to the value of a piece of eight, & the finder do not deliver it to the quarter master in the space of 24 hours he shall suffer what punishment the captain and the majority of the company shall think fit.
He that is found guilty of gaming, or defrauding one another to the value of a royal of plate, shall suffer what punishment the captain and the majority of the company shall think fit.
He that shall have the misfortune to lose a limb in time of engagement, shall have the sum of six hundred pieces of eight, and remain aboard as long as he shall think fit.
Good quarters to be given when craved.
He that sees a sail first, shall have the best pistol or small arm aboard of her.
He that shall be guilty of drunkenness in time of engagement shall suffer what punishment the captain and majority of the company shall think fit.
No snapping of Guns in the Hold.
That every man shall obey his commander in all respects, as if the ship was his own, and as if he received monthly wages.
That no man shall give, or dispose of, the ship's provisions; but every one shall have an equal share.
III. That no man shall open, or declare to any person or persons, who they are, or what designs they are upon; and any persons so offending shall be punished with immediate death.
That no man shall go on shore till the ship is off the ground, and in readiness to put to sea.
That every man shall keep his watch night and day; and at the hour of eight in the evening every one shall retire from gaming and drinking, in order to attend his respective station.
Every person who shall offend against any of these articles shall be punished with death, or in such other manner as the ship's company shall think proper
Henry Morgan and others
Some time in the 17th century
The fund of all payments under the articles is the stock of what is gotten by the expedition, following the same law as other pirates, that is, No prey, no pay.
Compensation is provided the Captain for the use of his ship, and the salary of the carpenter, or shipwright, who mended, careened, and rigged the vessel (the latter usually about 150 pieces of eight). A sum for provisions and victuals is specified, usually 200 pieces of eight. A salary and compensation is specified for the surgeon and his medicine chest, usually 250 pieces of eight.
A standard compensation is provided for maimed and mutilated buccaneers. "Thus they order for the loss of a right arm six hundred pieces of eight, or six slaves ; for the loss of a left arm five hundred pieces of eight, or five slaves ; for a right leg five hundred pieces of eight, or five slaves ; for the left leg four hundred pieces of eight, or four slaves ; for an eye one hundred pieces of eight, or one slave ; for a finger of the hand the same reward as for the eye.
Shares of booty are provided as follows: "the captain, or chief commander, is allotted five or six portions to what the ordinary seamen have ; the master's mate only two ; and Officers proportionate to their employment. After whom they draw equal parts from the highest even to the lowest mariner, the boys not being omitted. For even these draw half a share, by reason that, when they happen to take a better vessel than their own, it is the duty of the boys to set fire to the ship or boat wherein they are, and then retire to the prize which they have taken."
In the prizes they take, it is severely prohibited to every one to usurp anything, in particular to themselves. . . . Yea, they make a solemn oath to each other not to abscond, or conceal the least thing they find amongst the prey. If afterwards any one is found unfaithful, who has contravened the said oath, immediately he is separated and turned out of the society.
Punishments for breaking the Articles
Here be the fun part. The punishment for breaking any of these be most enjoyable. For everybody else of course. The quartermaster of the ship delivers the punishment to the poor sap. However, the captain gets to choose the punishment they see fit. It could result in:
Flogging with a rope of cat o' nine tails,
As flogging was common naval method of enforcing discipline, flogging was therefore specifically outlawed on some pirate ships. (But when do pirates listen to the laws?)
Tying to the mast,
Accused of a crime, then they be whipped, pickled in brine, and for nine days and nights (or however long ye want) they're tied to the main mast. Their arms and legs be extended at full length. Ye then untie them and lay them on the deck to trompe on them.
Dunking from the Yard Arm,
A traditional ceremony, they're attached to a spar which is hoisted high above the ocean and dunked repeatedly in. They're attached so that they don't let go their grip with the surprise of hitting the water.
Sold in slavery,
An economic activity. Ye sell them for a profit fit fer the captain and crew. Then they're no longer yer problem.
Walking the plank,
The offender is blindfolded with hands tied behind the back and made to walk overboard. A not very common punishment, though.
The offender, with all "fine" clothing taken (leaving under-shirts and garments), was abandoned without fresh water on a desert isle. A token of mercy was to be given a firearm or knife, to withhold such means to a swift end was a particular torment.
The most feared punishment of all. A rope is passed under the ship from side to side as would be used for scraping barnacles off the ship's keel. The offender is attached to the rope and thrown overboard and the rope pulled so as to force the offender underwater, underneath the ship's hull, and up the other side. The razor sharp barnacles will cut into the unfortunate sailor like a saw's edge, causing great pain. The victim might surface, gasp for air and taunting by his pirate comrades and then be keelhauled back underwater for another run.
Capt. Stone's crew
That's it! That be Capt. Stone's Articles of Agreement. To sign up fer me crew, put yer signature at the bottom and I'll give ye a rank.
- Captain Juan Stone: Captain of the crew!
- Thomas MacMillan: First Mate!
Charles Crestsilver: General of Crestsilver's Army : Lieutenant!
- Captain Nick: Boatswain!
- Jumbee: Gunner!
Photographs of Crew Members
If you signed up for the crew, put your picture here.