Shipwreck art "We are an unimaginative lot when it comes to naming things."

The title of this article is conjectural.
Although this article is based on canonical information, the actual name of this subject is pure conjecture. Please see the reasons for this title in the "Behind the scenes" section below, and/or the relevant discussion on the talk page.

Letters of Marque

Lord Cutler Beckett's Letters of Marque, signed by King George II.

"Letters of Marque. You will offer what amounts to a full pardon. Jack will be free, a privateer in the employ of England."
"Somehow I doubt Jack will consider employment the same as being free.
Cutler Beckett and William Turner[src]

These Letters of Marque were official documents used by Lord Cutler Beckett of the East India Trading Company. This document pardons the recipient of prior crimes against the Crown and rants the recipient a commission as a privateer in the employ of England, as he planned to use for Jack Sparrow. Ultimately, the letters were used to pardon James Norrington, who would later be given the promotion as admiral. This document required the signatures of Lord Cutler Beckett and King George II, as well as Beckett's seal, in order to be official.


"These Letters of Marque, they are signed by the King?"
"Yes, and they're not valid until they bear my signature and my seal.
Elizabeth Swann and Cutler Beckett.[src]
Liz Letters

Elizabeth Swann claiming the Letters from Lord Cutler Beckett.

The East India Trading Company was known to use Letters of Marque after 1707. Lord Cutler Beckett offered one such document, amounting to a full pardon, to William Turner in exchange for the compass owned by Jack Sparrow. He was also prepared to employ Jack as a privateer for England, though Turner believed Jack would never agree, since he likes his freedom. Beckett's Letters of Marque were signed by the King George II, and would not be legalized unless they bore Beckett's mark and seal. They were ultimately claimed by James Norrington as one half of the trade that secured Beckett possession of the heart of Davy Jones. This earned Norrington a full reinstatement into the Royal Navy and a promotion as an admiral of the Company.[1]

Behind the scenesEdit

Letters of Marque

The Letters of Marque

"The Letters of Marque—the letters Jack gave to you. Hand them over! Come, no time! Beckett used his ring to stamp this, yes?"
"The symbol is the same, from the same ring. Might it work?
"It might. Magic is funny that way.
Hector Barbossa, Elizabeth Swann, and Tia Dalma[src] (original screenplay)



Notes and referencesEdit

  1. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
  2. Powerful letters signed by King George I, giving pirates permission to become a privateer, or pirate hunter. It is the coveted blank check to freedom
  3. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Complete Visual Guide
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