What Is The Pirate's Flag Of Skull And Crossbones Called?


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The flag depicting the black background with a skull and crossbones on it is known as the Jolly Roger. The origins of the term Jolly Roger are still not really known, but one theory is that is comes from the French term 'joli rouge', meaning red beauty which the English corrupted into Jolly Roger. This could be likely as there were a series of red flags that were feared as much, or more than, the black flags.The red flag on a ship indicated the pirates intentions that no life would be spared.

A second theory is that the leader of a group of Asian pirates was called Ali Raja. English pirates again took the phrase and changed it to Jolly Roger. Another theory is that the English world Roger meant rogue and a vagabond. Old Roger was a term used to mean the devil.
The skull and crossbones were intended as an insult and a warning to people not to mess with the pirates. If they did, they too would end up as bones. It is believed to be a sign of death and destruction.

As with most things in life, today the pirate is glamorised in films such as the Pirates of the Caribbean, but originally pirates were worse than most of our mass killers we have today.

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