60 Fun And Fascinating Trivia Questions All About Pirates

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Today, we’re diving DEEP into the swashbuckling world of pirates!

From the infamous Blackbeard to the fierce Anne Bonny, the history of piracy is rife with tales of daring adventures, hidden treasures, and legendary rogues that have captured the imaginations of pirate lovers for centuries.

But why are pirates such an intriguing topic? Perhaps it’s the allure of the open sea, the thrill of the chase, or the mystique of life beyond the law. Pirates represent a rebellious spirit, defying authority and forging their own destinies on the high seas.

Plus, Johnny Depp did too good of a job portraying Jack Sparrow.

In this trivia quiz, we’ll delve into the captivating world of pirates, exploring their history, folklore, and infamous deeds. From the Barbarossa Brothers’ exploits in the Mediterranean to the adventures of the notorious Anne Bonny and Mary Read in the Caribbean, we’ll uncover the truth behind the legends and separate fact from fiction.

NOTE: This trivia post is best enjoyed with a group, where one person takes on the role of the game master, reading the questions aloud while others compete to guess the answers.

* This post may contain affiliate links. You won’t be paying a cent more, but in the event of a sale, the small affiliate commission I receive will help keep this blog running/pumping out useful content. Thanks!

Trivia Questions All About Pirates

Frigate Shtandart Pirate Ship

Were all pirates social outcasts before they became pirates?

Answer: No, some pirates were respected members of their communities and even held prominent positions before turning to piracy.

What is the name of the most famous pirate ship in pirate folklore, known for its fearsome reputation and black sails?

Answer: The Flying Dutchman.

According to pirate folklore, what item could ward off bad luck and protect against injuries at sea?

Answer: A piece of eight (Spanish dollar).

What type of pirate sword is characterized by its curved blade and was commonly used by pirates during the Golden Age of Piracy?

Answer: Cutlass.

What is the name of the long, slender sword favored by pirates for its agility and precision in combat?

Answer: Rapier.

True or False: Pirate folklore often portrays pirates as having a snake companion perched on their shoulders.

Answer: False. It would most likely be a parrot.

What type of pirate sword, named after its origin in the Middle East, features a curved blade with a distinctive hilt and guard?

Answer: Scimitar.

In pirate folklore, what mythical creature is believed to guard buried pirate treasure, often depicted with tentacles and a fearsome appearance?

Answer: Kraken.

What punishment did pirates impose on troublesome crewmembers?

Answer: Pirates would maroon troublesome crewmembers on deserted islands, leaving them to fend for themselves.

Which historical figure was captured by pirates when he was 25 years old and held for ransom (in 75 BCE)?

Answer: Julius Caesar.

This pirate is known for pulling off one of the most lucrative pirate raids in history, capturing the Ganj-i-Sawai and its vast treasure in the Indian Ocean. Who was he?

Answer: Captain Henry Avery (Long Ben)

Initially a privateer commissioned by the British government, this man turned to piracy and became one of the most infamous pirates of the late 17th century. Who was he?

Answer: Captain Kidd (William Kidd)

Known for his distinctive clothing and for having two female pirates, Anne Bonny and Mary Read, in his crew, this pirate’s name is ____.

Answer: Calico Jack (John Rackham)

What is the estimated possible value of all sunken treasure in the world?

Answer: $60 billion

In what year is the Golden Age of Piracy said to have begun?

Answer: 1650

How many pirates were estimated to be active during the Golden Age?

Answer: 5,000

What was Blackbeard’s real name?

Answer: Edward Teach

Who were the Barbarossa Brothers and where did they operate?

Answer: Aruj and Hizir, operating from North Africa’s Barbary Coast, they became wealthy by capturing European vessels in the Mediterranean Sea.

What was the nickname given to Francis Drake by Queen Elizabeth I?

Answer: “My pirate”

During Francis Drake’s famous voyage from 1577 to 1580, what significant feat did he accomplish?

Answer: He became the first English captain to circumnavigate the globe.

What fate awaited L’Olonnais, a notorious Caribbean buccaneer known for his cruelty?

Answer: According to legend, he was captured and eaten by cannibals.

What notorious pirate once ordered his men to lock the inhabitants of Puerto Príncipe, Cuba, inside a church to facilitate plundering?

Answer: Henry Morgan

How did Henry Morgan purportedly create a human shield during the capture of Porto Bello, Panama?

Answer: By using priests, women, and the mayor as part of the shield.

What was Captain William Kidd’s initial assignment before he turned pirate himself?

Answer: Hunting down pirates in the Indian Ocean.

How did Captain Kidd meet his end?

Answer: He was arrested, tried, and executed, and his decaying body was displayed as a warning to other pirates.

How did Blackbeard intimidate enemies?

Answer: By coiling smoking fuses into his facial hair and carrying multiple pistols and daggers.

What significant act did Blackbeard perform in November 1717 that involved a French slave ship?

Answer: He captured a French slave ship and refitted it with 40 guns, renaming it the Queen Anne’s Revenge.

How did Blackbeard meet his end?

Answer: He was killed in battle with the British Navy, receiving 20 stab wounds and five gunshot wounds.

Who was John Rackam, and what was his nickname?

Answer: He was a pirate known as Calico Jack.

Which two women were part of Calico Jack’s crew, and what happened to them after Rackam’s execution?

Answer: Anne Bonny and Mary Read; both were found to be pregnant and escaped the hangman’s noose, but Read died in prison, and Bonny’s fate is unknown.

Who took over the leadership of the Barbary Coast after Aruj’s death?

Answer: Hizir, also known as Khair-ed-Din.

True or False: The most successful pirate in history was a woman named Zheng Yi Sao, also known as Madame Cheng.

Answer: True

What was Zheng Yi Sao’s former profession before becoming a pirate?

Answer: She was a former prostitute.

How many ships and men were under Zheng Yi Sao’s command during her time as a pirate?

Answer: 1,800 ships and 70,000 men

Why did pirates wear patches over one eye?

Answer: Pirates wore patches to help their eyes adjust between the bright ship deck and the dark below decks.

What was the purpose of hooks and wooden pegs among pirates?

Answer: Pirates with lost limbs sometimes replaced them with hooks or wooden pegs, which also served as symbols of their toughness and resilience.

Why did pirates wear earrings?

Answer: Pirates wore earrings not for fashion, but because sailors believed they could help ward off seasickness by applying pressure to the earlobe.

When was the Golden Age of Piracy?

Answer: The “Golden Age of Piracy” spanned from 1650 to 1720, during which notorious pirates like Blackbeard and Henry Morgan gained fame.

What term is used to describe privately owned ships armed with guns, operating in times of war with official authorization to capture merchant vessels?

Answer: Privateers were privately owned ships that operated with official authorization, known as “letters of marque,” to capture enemy merchant vessels.

What were the origins of many pirates in England during the Golden Age of piracy? How did they decide to go their pirate ways in the first place?

Answer: Social disruption, unemployment, and overcrowding in urban areas drove many people, including seamen, to turn to piracy for economic opportunity and control over their lives.

What were the primary motivations for individuals to become pirates during the Golden Age?

Answer: Piracy offered the chance to get rich quickly and exert power over others, providing an alternative to the tough and disciplined life of ordinary seamen.

Can you name at least one female pirate?

Answer: Notorious female pirates include Zheng Yi Sao, Anne Bonny, Mary Read, and Grace O’Malley.

What did pirates sometimes steal besides gold and jewels?

Answer: Pirates sometimes stole books from ships, especially those containing navigational charts and valuable information.

How did pirates adapt their diet for life at sea? What are some things they would eat?

Answer: Pirates brought food onboard that wouldn’t spoil quickly, including cured meats, fermented vegetables, and animals for milk, eggs, and fresh meat.

How were pirate ship captains chosen?

Answer: Pirate ship captains were elected by popular vote and could be removed if their performance fell short.

Did pirates follow any rules?

Answer: Yes, pirates followed a strict set of rules known as the pirate code, which outlined disciplinary practices and the division of stolen goods.

Did pirates have entertainment onboard?

Answer: Yes, pirate ships often had bands and theaters to keep the crew entertained during long voyages.

What pet did pirates commonly keep onboard?

Answer: Pirates commonly kept parrots onboard their ships due to their colorful appearance and ability to learn to talk.

Parrot Birds
Can you imagine this on a pirate’s shoulder?

What flag, adorned with a skull and crossbones, was commonly flown by pirates to strike fear into their victims?

Answer: The Jolly Roger flag was often flown by pirates as a symbol of their menacing presence.

What were the symbols on pirate flags besides the skull and crossbones?

Answer: Pirate flags featured various symbols, such as an hourglass with the devil or a blood-red skeleton, to signify their identity and intentions.

Overall, did piracy negatively impact local economies?

Answer: No, piracy contributed to local economies as pirates spent their plundered wealth at ports, benefiting towns and offering employment opportunities.

What was the value of the largest pirate plunder in history?

Answer: Captain Henry Avery and his crew made off with a haul worth more than $200 million in today’s currency.

What nickname was given to Black Sam Bellamy?

Answer: He was nicknamed “Robin Hood of the Sea” for his disdain of the English system and his democratic crew.

Where did archaeologists reportedly find a part of Captain Kidd’s treasure in 2015?

Answer: Off the coast of Madagascar, in the area of Saint Marie Island. Divers discovered a 121-pound bar of silver there.

In which regions of the world are modern-day pirates most active?

Answer: Modern-day pirates are most active in the waters around Indonesia, Somalia, and Nigeria

In the movie “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl,” what is the name of the cursed pirate crew’s captain?

Answer: Captain Hector Barbossa.

Which actor portrays the infamous pirate Captain Jack Sparrow in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” film series?

Answer: Johnny Depp.

What is the name of the treasure sought after in the adventure film “National Treasure: Book of Secrets”?

Answer: The legendary lost city of gold, Cibola.

In the film “The Goonies,” what is the name of the pirate whose treasure the kids seek to find in order to save their homes from foreclosure?

Answer: One-Eyed Willy.

Who directed the 2003 film “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl”?

Answer: Gore Verbinski.

In the movie “Hook,” which actor plays the adult Peter Banning, who rediscovers his identity as Peter Pan while fighting against Captain Hook?

Answer: Robin Williams.

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    Additional Resources To Learn More About Pirate History

    • The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Downbuy this book on Amazon
    • Black Flags, Blue Waters: The Epic History of America’s Most Notorious Piratesbuy this book on Amazon
    • For kids: How to Be a Piratebuy this book on Amazon
    • National Geographic – Pirates: National Geographic offers a comprehensive section on pirates, including articles, videos, and interactive features exploring various aspects of pirate history and culture.
    • Smithsonian Magazine – Pirates: Smithsonian Magazine provides in-depth articles and resources on pirate history, delving into their adventures, legends, and impact on global maritime history.
    • History.com – Pirates: History.com offers a wealth of articles, videos, and features on pirate history, covering topics ranging from famous pirates to their ships, weapons, and tactics.
    • Royal Museums Greenwich: The Golden Age of Piracy: Offers a curated collection of resources on the golden age of piracy, featuring historical documents, maps, and illustrations related to pirates and their exploits.

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    Elle Liang

    Elle is a travel blogger and entertainment publisher by day and a trivia fanatic by night. Her favorite hobbies include hiking mountains, traveling anywhere in the world, watching documentaries, playing bingo, and brushing up on world knowledge through games like Trivial Pursuit.

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