lwhitehead

an diea for a Pirate flag

13 posts in this topic

Hi I was wondering for an official Pirate flag could one be of White with a Black Octopus in the middle of it, Yes I know that Pirate flags are ether Black or Red background with a some sort of Bone art in the middle.

LW

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I'm sorry for the title of this posting, also I could some replies on this posting about my idea for a pirate flag is it wrong or not?,

LW

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If you mean by "official" a flag that would represent a group that you are forming then any flag you can design is "official" for your group so long as you didn't steal it. Some steal elements of other flags and represent them as their own. One such frequently stolen design element is the "crossed pistols" from this flag:

RedwakeCrossedPistols.jpg

I'd start with the thread below to get an idea of what an "historical" flag looked like.

http://pyracy.com/index.php/topic/824-the-jolly-roger/?hl=flag

After that it is up to you. A more authentic flag would have simple design elements visible at great distances, up to ten miles (the distance to the horizon from a masthead, give or take a couple of miles.) The earliest flag of imminent mayhem was the red flag symbolizing that no quarter would be given or asked.

The point is that if you like your flag and it is unique to yourself or group then it's official. There is no real "wrong" on personal or crew flags, only on historical flags. Mine has elements taken from historical flags. The Skull and Bones is from a flag attributed to Emanuel Wynne. I substituted a cutlass below instead of the hourglass on Wynnes flag and moved the hourglass to the red tail. Simple, effective, semi-historical. And it looks good at a distance:

F110D800DSC_4220_SELECT_TINY_NET-MOTION.

Look here for what others have done: http://pyracy.com/index.php/topic/4670-post-yer-colors-mates/

Edited by Captain Jim

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I stole the symbol from Spectre James Bond movie main source of bad guys, my character's Edward Kraken family coat of arms is a Black Octopus, his noble family ring is White face with a Black Octopus in the middle. Yes Edward comes from a noble family fell on very hard times his Father is in service to self made noble family as a Butler.

LW

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Are you looking for historical precedents for cephlapods on a flag? I can almost guarantee you there are none. I talk about the flags which are actually described during (or at least near) the golden age of piracy in my article on Memento Mori. If you want to read it, you will find that page here.

The kraken is not mentioned in relation to pirates because the word didn't appear until Carolus Linnaeus used it in his book Systema Naturae in 1735. (This is about 5-10 years after the golden age of piracy, depending on how you define it.) In the many sailors accounts from period and near-period that I've read, octopi and squid are rarely mentioned. They were generally of more interest to adventurous naturalists than to sailors.

Although some near-period texts do mention sea monsters in the same way they mention ghosts, will-o-the-wisps, werewolves and other fantastic creatures. You can read about some of those accounts in my Halloween article. (While there are some sea monsters mentioned and even drawn by Ambroise Paré, I don't recall much in the way of giant squid-related material. They are mostly people-fish sorts of things.) It would be an interesting idea for next Halloween's article, given the current fascination engendered by the POTC movies, though. I have a feeling it would mostly be a myth-busting sort of article however.)

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Well as I stated before the Black Octopus is the family crest of the Kraken family and Edward Kraken when becoming a Pirate Captain he made that flag as his standard and id.

LW

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So this is a question about a fictional flag for a fictional bio. It doesn't really belong in this forum. I'd move it to the proper forum, but I am not sure what that would be. Fiction? Charts, Arts & Wanted Posters? The Crow's Nest?

Just out of curiosity I looked up the Surname 'Kraken' and there are none (or at least not enough statistically to be noted) in the UK. They are mostly concentrated in the New World countries which were not well settled during the golden age: Mexico, US, Canada and Australia. This suggests to me that it did not arise here, but was either adopted by those without surnames or was imported by the few old world countries where the name Kraken exists in a statistically significant fashion. (If it did arise the new world countries, it would be a Native American, Aboriginal or Mesoamerican name, which wouldn't suit your purposes very well anyhow.)

Old world countries with a notable number of Krakens include Poland, Bohemia, the Cossack Hetmanate and Denmark. The only of these old world countries to produce significant numbers of pirates during the golden age were the Danish. So if you want to frame your story historically, your family would have been Danes. As a side note, it is interesting that most of these old world countries sporting Krakens border Germany (except the Cossacks) and yet there are no significant numbers of Krakens in Germany itself. I would guess (based on the concentration and spelling) that its origin as a surname is probably Polish in origin. The first Polish-Danish relations date back to the beginning of the first Polish dynasty, (the Piast dynasty). In 996, the first Polish king, Mieszko I, gave his daughter Świętosława in marriage to the Danish King Svend Forkbeard. This further supports Poland as the origin of the surname Kraken.

Kraken doesn't mean anything in Danish or Polish, although it does mean 'crack' in Dutch.

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I thought it meant "rum" ... ;)

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Well Kraken is the surname of my character's family name, and the Flag itself I think Pirates of Dark Water used the Octopus as symbol of long dead city the main character was fighting for as a Prince.

The main reason is that I don't want to get sued by James Bond Movie people,

LW

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LW -

If you can dream it... Capn Mac can make it. He is or was a member of the Pub, but I haven't seen him post recently.

I think his web site was Dirk and Arrow???

Arrrrgh... he did me a nice two sided personal flag on a black field . ^_^ A white diamond with a crossed sword and cutlass beneath and the latin Momento Mori beneath that.

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Don't start with the Bond folks actual design, just make your own. Then you should be safe. (Besides, so long as you're not making money from it or directly infringing on their copyright somehow, I don't think they'd even take notice.)

Octopus-based pirate flags are already around and no one seems concerned about them. For example, the Medusa crew uses one, although theirs is loosely based on the Captain America Hydra flag from what I've been told. (So far the Marvel folks don't seem concerned.)

ch2_tim2_and_medusa_flag_jessica.jpg

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Hail Hydra?

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Your best bet is to design it yourself. Don't use an exact copy of an image. If being sued by someone is your concern, again, just design it yourself and construct the flag yourself. Many High School teams have been under fire by Colleges and Universities, even Professional Sports groups who have gone through this issue. Again, it's always best to just design it yourself.

By all means, create your Colours that best represents your crew. Always keep that in mind. That's the point of a flag is the symbolism and the message they are trying to convey.

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