Jolly Roger is a special type of flag used on pirate ships back the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Ships commonly used different kinds of flags to identify themselves thereby allowing other ships to recognize other ships a-sail.
This was basically done to enable ships to identify whether the ship nearby is an ally or an enemy. Pirates also use the Jolly Roger to send out a specific message.
For instance, the black flag was raised for the intention of attacking a specific ship and that everyone on board should show no resistance.
On the other hand, if resistance occurs, the red flag will be raised in which case, the pirates are sending out a message that no mercy will be shown to everyone on board.
Biggest Jolly Roger
Today, the Jolly Roger is used for special occasions such as Halloween as well as in theme parks, specialty shops and even in bedrooms as a decorative piece.
The biggest Jolly Roger in standard size is approximately three feet in width by five feet in length. This is roughly about thirty-six inches wide and sixty inches long.
There are however several other sizes that you can find today. There are Jolly Rogers in measurements of two feet by three feet which is approximately twenty-four inches by thirty-six inches; and a smaller version measuring twelve inches by eighteen inches.
Designs on these flags usually depict specific flags made famous by specific infamous pirates who sailed the seas back the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
How Does the Jolly Roger Look Like?
The original Jolly Roger basically has a black background with an image of a skull and two bones crossed on top of the other. Over time, these images had several variations.
For instance, infamous English pirate Edward Low used a Jolly Roger that had an image of a skeleton of the human anatomy on a black background. Another Jolly Roger type of flag used by Calico Jack had an image of the human skull and two swords crisscrossed under the skull.
One flag, which is credited to Blackbeard, had a human skeleton holding an hourglass in one hand and a spear on the other. The spear was pointed towards an image of a heart in red color.
There are many other different images used on Jolly Roger flags, specific to certain pirates during the time when the Jolly Roger first came to be known. Whatever the image however, all these flags send out the same clear message: surrender or die.