A Jolly Rogers Tale: Skull & Shackles
Often called a “privateer’s code” or “gentleman’s code,” the following strictures are usually adhered to only by officers or those sailors whose captains consider themselves to be more than simple criminals—most frequently buccaneers who operate with government approval.
• A privateer shall not engage in one-on-one combat with an unarmed foe.
• Passengers and prisoners who may be objects of lust to crew members are not to be imposed upon or harassed.
• A privateer shall never refuse satisfaction to an honorable opponent.
• A privateer shall always accept the surrender of an honorable foe—such prisoners may later be ransomed or press-ganged into the crew.
• A privateer shall not beat or mutilate slaves or prisoners.
• A privateer shall never attack from concealment nor strike down an unsuspecting foe from behind.
• A privateer shall take what she deserves by virtue of her strength of arms, but shall not plunder the poor.
• A privateer’s word is as strong as her steel. She shall never break a promise nor renege on an agreement.
• A privateer shows discretion in conversation and does not pry into matters that don’t concern her.