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
• 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.