Pirate Swords

Pirates are known as seamen who steal, attack, destroy, and even seize any ship they see at high seas, and there are times they even attack ships that are harbored at shore. Aside from these, pirates are almost always involved in numerous types of illegal activities such as slave trades and smuggling. Generally, these individuals do these illegal activities for personal interest and without any legal rights so since these attacks are considered as unnecessary and unauthorized acts, the pirates have been continuously treated and considered as criminals in every country. So during periods when these sea-robbers were wreaking havoc with their illegal acts, lawmakers ensured that their doings would all be punishable by death in almost every area in the world.

Pirates have been around from the very beginning of history and they still continue to terrorize and attack unsuspecting individuals; there are a few areas such as the west coast of Africa, the islands of the Indian Ocean, and most especially the Caribbean, that have continued to be these pirates’ hunting grounds. When attacking, these pirates definitely have weapons and equipment that help them with their illegal activities, and for those who are curious about these, here are some of the most common and even famous pirate swords around:

Pirate Cutlass


Among the most popular pirate swords of all is the pirate cutlass which is also sometimes referred to as the pirate saber. This specific weapon is a short, slashing sword or broad saber that features either a straight or slightly arched blade that has an extremely efficient and sharp cutting edge; additionally, it features a hilt that is fixed with a basket-shaped or solid-cupped guard. These were the most common pirate swords utilized as naval weapon during the Age of Sail, and these pirate swords were considered as the most durable and efficient tools for battle especially when all of these pirates’ guns have been discharged. The pirate cutlass was characterized by being much shorter compared to a cavalry saber, plus it also has a durable and sturdier arched blade which was definitely effective for battling in close or confined areas on or below the ship’s deck.

The pirate cutlass is a favorite sword among pirates and it is said that Caribbean buccaneers were the ones responsible for the creation of this weapon. However, the successive utilization of the pirate cutlass was thoroughly documented in a variety of modern sources such as the pirate crews of William Kidd, Stede Bonnet, and William Fry. Pirates make use of the weapon not only for combat but also for intimidation; they would simply grip the hilts of the weapon and the crew would simply surrender in an instant. At times, these pirates would also make use of these weapons to beat up captives and force them into compliance. Furthermore, the sailors of this period usually traveled the sea with just a few pieces of tools and combat equipment but they did make use of one specific and popular bladed weapon during the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries and this was definitely the cutlass. This well-defined, short sword definitely became a favorite weapon utilized in both the Navy as well as in pirate ships due to its high-quality, versatility, and strength. Not only did it work to protect its wielder from enemies, but these weapons were also highly efficient for general ship work and even repairs such as chopping wood, hacking heavy-duty ropes for sail, cutting strong canvas, and a lot more; more importantly, the weapon was excellent for close combat battles. Due to its excellence and versatility, the cutlass was also often utilized as an agricultural tool since it was a weapon used in a lot of areas that had a lot of sugarcanes and rain forests like Central America and the Caribbean – eventually becoming the famous machete of those in the Caribbean.


The broadsword was one of the most common and popular weapon among Vikings since these swords were particularly heavy yet long enough for adequate reach. Although the reach was good, pirates did not really favor these weapons since these were not very efficient on board, yet the pirate swords of this type were utilized at sea by naval soldiers and buccaneers.

The only reason why some pirates make use of these swords is due to the strong and deadly blows that it can execute in just a single swing.

Pirate Small Sword

The medieval pirate small word became a favorite from the seventeenth to the eighteenth centuries during the late Renaissance period; it was a successor to the heavier and lengthier but extremely thin Epee. The small sword’s hilt is commonly a knuckle bow that features an egg-shaped pommel and a crossguard that is double-lobbed. As for its blade, it is described as being lengthy with a diamond cross section or a stiff triangular appearance. Furthermore, it also may or may not have a cutting edge that is real. Keep in mind that this type of sword is mainly utilized for thrusting. Generally, these weapons did not really cause extensive damage and there are instances that these could be easily damaged by heavier and much larger weapons. Despite this, these pirate swords were still widely utilized for personal duels.

Pirate Hanger Sword

The hanger is a longer version of the popular pirate cutlass sword; the cutlass sword measures over half a meter while the hanger can be about as long as a meter. During the early seventeenth century, this specific type of sword was fixed with heart-shaped brass guards as well as spiraled grips made of brass; there were also other types of popular grips that were fitted on the weapon and these included the horn, bone, wooden grips, the clam iron shells, and quillions. These pirate hanger swords were cheaply produced in Spain and Germany, and when the year 1684 came, pirates have begun to adopt this as their combat weapon. However, these weapons began to slowly disappear during the rise of other weapons such as the bayonets, yet these pirate swords became the basis for the hunting sword’s design.


Aside from pirate swords, pirates utilized other tools and equipment such as daggers, pikes, knives, etc. and primarily, these weapons were thrown and aimed at targeted ships during boarding – when the pirates linked their gangplanks to occupy and attack their targeted ships. In this day and age, collecting pirate swords is easy since there are numerous online shops that sell these for collectors and sword enthusiasts. These pirate swords have become extremely popular due to today’s mass media and the weapons have been featured in different films such as the Pirates of the Caribbean. Furthermore, there are also instances where these weapons were featured in theme parks, comic books, novels, and even in games.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *