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"The Quartermaster sees things before they happen. He has foreseen my death, and so the fates have spoken. The threads of destiny woven."
"You have a ridiculously high regard for fate, mate."
"And you?"
"Me? I'm skeptical of predicting any future...which includes me.
Blackbeard and Jack Sparrow[src]

Fate or destiny was a predetermined course of events. It may be conceived as a predetermined future, whether in general or of an individual. It was a concept based on the belief that there is a fixed natural order to the cosmos.

Although often used interchangeably, the words "fate" and "destiny" have distinct connotations.

  • Traditional usage defines fate as a power or agency that predetermines and orders the course of events. Fate defines events as ordered or "inevitable" and unavoidable. Classical and European mythology features three goddesses dispensing fate, known as Moirai in Greek mythology, as Parcae in Roman mythology, and as Norns in Norse mythology. They determine the events of the world through the mystic spinning of threads that represent individual human fates.
  • Destiny is used with regard to the finality of events as they have worked themselves out; and to that same sense of "destination", projected into the future to become the flow of events as they will work themselves out.

In other words, "fate" relates to events of the future and present of an individual and in cases in literature unalterable, whereas "destiny" relates to the probable future. Fate implies no choice, but with destiny the entity participates in achieving an outcome that is directly related to itself. Participation happens willfully.


"You are a desperate man. You are the one who hopes to get married. But your fate is to be married to this ship."
"I choose my own fate."
"Then it wouldn't be fate, would it?
Davy Jones and Will Turner[src]

When William "Bootstrap Bill" Turner ended up on the bottom of the ocean strapped to a cannon and unable to die due to being under the curse of the Treasure of Cortés, he thought he would trade anything for even the tiniest hope of escaping that fate. Davy Jones, the supernatural ruler of the ocean realms, freed Turner from his prison in exchange for one hundred years of service on his ghost ship, the Flying Dutchman.[1]

When the notorious pirate Jack Sparrow single-handedly attacked Fort Charles and got captured by the British forces led by Commodore James Norrington, his acquaintances Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann thought it wouldn't be fair to leave Jack to the fate that Norrington had in store for him so they decided to help him escape.[2]

Davy Jones predicted that Will Turner's fate was to be married to his ship, the Flying Dutchman.

While playing Liar's Dice aboard the Flying Dutchman, Davy Jones once warned Will Turner that his fate was to be married to the Dutchman; despite Will saying he chose his own fate, Jones denied his claim by saying it wouldn't be fate.[3]

When the Kraken dragged the Black Pearl and Jack Sparrow with it to Davy Jones' Locker, Hector Barbossa thought Jack's fate was well-deserved.[4] According to Barbossa, when the sea goddess Calypso was still free, "the seas were untamed, the world a rougher place, but "a sailor made his own fate", and he intended to bring that time back.[5]

Davy Jones' prophetic words came true when Will Turner stabbed his heart during the battle of Calypso's maelstrom and took his place as captain of the Dutchman.[4] Following his first meeting with his wife Elizabeth and son Henry after ten years of captaining the Dutchman, Will Turner surrendered to his fate, accepting the fact that he was bound to the ship for all eternity, eventually ordering Henry to forget him.[6]

Blackbeard thought it was foolish to battle fate but he was willing to cheat it.

The infamous pirate Blackbeard was said to have a high regard for fate, most notably after learning of a prophecy of his own death made by his zombie quartermaster who could divine the future.[7] Following the unsuccessful mutiny aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge, Jack Sparrow saw the Cook zombiefied, realising his fate was worse than death itself.[8]

During the Quest for the Trident of Poseidon, when the Black Pearl ended up beached on the shores of Black rock island, Carina Smyth thought it was a cruel trick of fate to arrive to her destination but not find what she was looking for.[9]

Behind the scenes[]

"Maid or not, it suits you."
"Dare I ask the fate of its previous owner?"
"Now, none of that.
Hector Barbossa and Elizabeth Swann[src] (deleted scene)



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