From both Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest and the adventures of young Jack Sparrow novels aimed at young readers, viewers learn that Jack Sparrow made a deal with Davy Jones to resurrect the Wicked Wench from the depths, but upon doing so Jack re-christens the ship with the name The Black Pearl.

The Black Pearl was an infamous pirate ship, originally named the Wicked Wench. At one point it was sold and turned into a merchant vessel before turning back to piracy when it was re-christened. With sails as dark as a moonless night, and a hull painted to match, this legendary ship of the seven seas was every inch a pirate vessel. Built for action, this ghost ship could outsail any other sailing vessels. The Black Pearl was most notably captained by Jack Sparrow and Hector Barbossa.

Why does Jack rename the ship the Black Pearl? Where does the name "Black Pearl" originate and/or why did he choose to rename it? (I'm primarily interested in an in universe answer, but would accept an out of universe answer if no other answers can be found).

1 Answer 1


The ship was badly burned when Jack took possession, so one of his first acts (along with getting the ship refitted) was to coat it liberally in black paint to hide the scorch marks. In true Jack Sparrow style, and never one to do things by halves, he then blackened every single flat surface.

By making the ship such a distinctive colour he's capable of inspiring terror in their potential victims, thus encouraging their swift surrender, as well as ensuring his own notoriety.

It was odd to be up here, on the quarterdeck. with everything painted black, instead of the chestnut color of the Wicked Wench. But he'd known that black paint would hide the burn marks most effectively. And besides...a black ship with black sails, a fast black ship with black sails, was the stuff on which legends were built, here in the Caribbean.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Price of Freedom

As to why he chose "Black Pearl" (as opposed to, say, the Midnight Mary) is down to his personal choice, but it's notable that prior to the artificial cultivation of pearls, a natural black pearl would be a vanishingly rare object, almost the stuff of legends itself.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.