Monday, January 12, 2009

Pirate Tattoo

Penzance and pirates are forever linked. But something about the advertisement reminded me of the story of dolphins being the souls of dead pirates. I found the explanation in a children's book called Pirate-o-pedia. A pilot called Acetes was sailing to Delos with his crew. He sent them for water but they came back with a sleeping youth they had kidnapped. Unhappily for them this was no noble's son who would fetch them a good ransom - it was the God, Dionysus (Bacchus). And when he awoke he was none too pleased. He stopped the ship when it was at sea and the errant sailors found they were acquiring scales and fins. All but Acetes, who refused to join their criminal game, were turned into dolphins and swam around spouting water from their nostrils. Acetes was spared and took Dionysus to onwards to Naxos where he was to meet Ariadne, his bride-to-be. You can find more pirate stories at