Ahoy, me hearties!
As many of you may already know, today is Talk Like a Pirate Day. Since I find the historical subject of piracy quite interesting, specially after reading Pirate Utopias, I would like to bring up the discussion. Pirate Utopias deals mainly with the events in Africa's Mediterranean coastline and particularly two Moroccan cities, Rabat and Salé. At some point Peter Lamborn Wilson, the author, mentions the language pirates must have spoken, arguably a mixture of the many languages of both Europe and Africa — maybe even constituting a pidgin of sorts.
The “piratespeak” people try to reproduce today certainly comes from literature and stereotypes; the real thing was probably a mixture of at least English, French, Italian, Spanish and Arabic. Though it seems to me that there are very few written documents, if any at all, are there any studies on those “pirate languages”? Maybe yer salty sea dogs have seen somethin' about it!