Greek fire was a deadly weapon invented by the ancient Byzantine Empire. The Byzantines typically used it in naval battles to great effect as it could continue burning while floating on water. They were generally put in jars which were placed into bomb like packets. Oil was mixed in with the mixture, and it was ignited when catapulted. When launched, it looked like a continuous fire shooting from the ship; it was extremely deadly.
There was a secret weapon located in the bow of Blackbeard's flagship, the Queen Anne's Revenge, which was based on the Greek fire device of the Byzantines. Unleashed by a skeletal figurehead, a sulphurous spray spreads all the terrors of the inferno through enemy ranks.
The formula of the components that made up the Greek fire was a closely guarded secret, making it used in only the Byzantine ships. There were also cannons that were put at the top of the walls of seaside forts. When an enemy ship or fleet was spotted and in close range, the cannons were fired, releasing great flames that would burn ships to ashes. Given this, Greek fire was a dangerous and formidable weapon. Some of these cannons were shaped like lions' heads, to make them look terrifying. The cannons were made of brass or iron with the animal's mouth open and gilded over, the fire being directed at the enemy from tubes inside the mouth of the lion, to make it seem as if the lions were vomiting the fire.
However, the Greek fire did not make the Byzantine navy invincible. Due to being a siphon-deployed wepon, it had a limited range and could only be used safely in a calm sea with favorable wind conditions. The enemy navies eventually adapted themselves to the fire, by staying out of its effective range and by devising methods of protection such as felt or hides soaked in vinegar.
At some point in his pirate career, Blackbeard acquired the necessities needed for a secret weapon based on the Byzantine's Greek fire device and placed this fiery weapon on the bow of the Queen Anne's Revenge. Unleashed by a skeletal figurehead, a sulphurous spray spreads all the terrors of the inferno through enemy ranks. Blackbeard also used Greek fire as part of a voodoo ritual used to create his zombie officers through his dark magic.
The fiery power of the Queen Anne's Revenge was witnessed most notably during the quest for the Fountain of Youth. After the attempted mutiny aboard the Revenge, Blackbeard unleashed Greek fire on the Cook, as an example for the other mutineers, and had him brought back to work as a zombie. It was also used during the battle at Whitecap Bay in an attempt to drive the mermaids toward the trap set by his crew members, who all held fishing nets. It is unknown if the weapon was still used after Hector Barbossa defeated Blackbeard and became the new captain of the Queen Anne's Revenge.
Behind the scenes
- In real-world history, Greek fire was never used by Blackbeard nor his ship Queen Anne's Revenge.
- Rather than Greek fire and rituals, the Sword of Triton was used to create Blackbeard's zombie officers in LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean: The Video Game.
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Tides of War
- Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (First appearance)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
- Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides: The Visual Guide
- Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (junior novelization)