The Swashbuckling Origins of the Pirate Accent

Tom Blank of Weird History recounts the swashbuckling history of the iconic pirate accent, first popularized by actor Robert Newton in the 1950 Disney film Treasure Island, who used an exaggerated version of his native West Country English accent to portray Long John Silver.

The seafaring criminals known as pirates have existed for thousands of years. But because of the portrayals found in literature – or seen in films, TV shows, or on stage – much of what the general public thinks about pirates is likely historically inaccurate.

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