Help support TMP

"Period Costumes in Pirates of the Caribbean?" Topic

20 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

Please remember not to make new product announcements on the forum. Our advertisers pay for the privilege of making such announcements.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the Pirates Message Board

Areas of Interest

18th Century

Featured Hobby News Article

Featured Link

Top-Rated Ruleset

Days of Knights

Rating: gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star 

Featured Showcase Article

Fighting 15's Teutonic Order Command 1410

Command figures for the 1410 Teutonics.

Featured Profile Article

Featured Book Review

10,753 hits since 5 Jul 2006
©1994-2022 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Cacique Caribe06 Jul 2006 9:15 p.m. PST

Based on the costumes of the pirates and soldiers in the movie, is it supposed to take place in the late 1700s?

Yes, I know it is fiction. :)

Cacique Caribe06 Jul 2006 9:39 p.m. PST

Is this what British marines wore in the Caribbean around that time?


I am wondering what costumes soldiers wore in the Caribbean around 1762, when the British briefly took the Morro fort in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and if they would be the same costumes as those depicted in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

Can anyone enlighten me?



Cacique Caribe06 Jul 2006 9:56 p.m. PST

Oops. Wrong year.

I am interested in what the British soldiers in the Caribbean wore in 1797, when they attacked Puerto Rico:

And this is what the National Park Service says of the event:



Towards the end of the 18th century, England wanted to restore the balance of power in Europe in such a way that it could retain control of the seas and consequently dominate world trade. If England could take control of the Caribbean, this would aid the process. Therefore, in 1797, Great Britain sent Admiral Sir Henry Harvey and General Sir Ralph Abercromby to command a powerful naval fleet of some 60 vessels to the Caribbean to conquer Trinidad and Puerto Rico. Together with Jamaica, these territories would form a triangle of English power in the Caribbean. In February of 1797, they were able to take the island of Trinidad from a sick and demoralized Spanish garrison. This gave them confidence to believe that they could do the same in San Juan.

The English fleet arrived to the waters of San Juan on April 17, 1797 and the next day, Abercromby landed 3,000 men on the beaches of Cangrejos. By taking control of the surrounding area, he sought to cut off communication between San Juan and the interior of the island, but the Spaniards then began to send in reinforcements and provisions by canoe through the Bayamon River and Cataño. The English then set up siege batteries and began to bombard the Spanish defenses, managing to destroy part of the forts of San Gerónimo and San Antonio but owing to the fury with which the Puerto Ricans defended, they were unable to advance towards San Juan. Many English soldiers died, and Sir Ralph Abercromby had to retreat without gaining entry to the city of San Juan. He left behind cannons, mortars and obuses which were later melted down and used to make a statue of Juan Ponce de León, which can be seen in Plaza San José in Old San Juan."

Wikipedia has this . . .

"On February 17, 1797, the appointed governor of Puerto Rico, Ramón de Castro, who was also a brigadier general in the Spanish Army, received the news that England had invaded the Caribbean island of Trinidad. Governor Ramón de Castro believed that Puerto Rico would be the next objective of the British and that they would once again attempt to invade the island. He decided to put the militia on alert and to prepare the island's forts against any military action. On April 17, 1797, British ships under the command of Sir Ralph Abercromby, approached the coastal town of Loíza, to the east of San Juan. On April 18, British soldiers and German mercenaries ("Hessians") landed on Loíza's beach. Under the command of Brigadier Ramón de Castro, British ships were attacked with artillery and mortar fire from both El Morro and the San Gerónimo fortresses. The British twice tried to take the Martín Peña Bridge, which would lead to San Juan, but after fiercely fighting the Spanish forces and local militia they were defeated in both of their attempts. The invasion had failed because a total of 16,000 Puerto Rican volunteers and Spanish troops fought back and defended the island. The British also attacked Aguadilla and Punta Salinas, but they were defeated, and the British troops that had landed on the island were taken prisoner. The British retreated on April 30, 1797 to their ships and on May 2, 1797 set sails towards north. Because of the defeat given the british forces governor Ramon de Castro petitoned Spanish King Charles IV some recognitions for the victors; he was promoted to Field Marshall and others where promoted and given some pay raises.

On December 1797 the British also attacked Aguadilla but they were defeated. The British persited to invade Puerto Rico with unsuccesful skirmishes on the coastal towns of Ponce, Cabo Rojo, Mayaguez untill 1802 when the war with England finally came to an end."


Lowtardog07 Jul 2006 12:25 a.m. PST

Hello CC, In 1797 you are looking at early Napoleonic uniforms or Marine uniforms. Pirates of the Carib should be set in the 1720s-1730 and so uniforms would not be as in the picture which look more like 7 years war or even AWI

Lowtardog07 Jul 2006 1:07 a.m. PST

Heres a link with some pictures


Napoleon III07 Jul 2006 2:16 a.m. PST

Lowtardog brings up a good point. The British uniforms depicted in "Pirates of the Caribbean" are anachronistic. They are from approx. the American Revolution (judging by the lapels and white "small clothes") rather than the early 1700s. Oh well, still a rip-roaring great movie!! Looking forward to the sequel this weekend.

carne6807 Jul 2006 2:28 a.m. PST

I believe that Brits in tropical locations wore white linen small clothes even before the 1768 Warrant. The uniforms are only anachronistic if one assumes the movie to take place in 1797. I believe that the heyday of piracy in the Caribean was 1730-40. If that is the assumed time period of the movie then the uniforms are Okay but the Carronades are anachronistic.

Gaijin7907 Jul 2006 2:37 a.m. PST

According to my trusty Ospreys, the British uniforms are from the early to mid 1700's. As carne68 just said, the white small clothes were worn in hotter/tropical climates while the rest of the army still wore red small clothes.

John the OFM07 Jul 2006 3:19 a.m. PST

Lety's confine the uniform nit-picking to movies that trumpet how "accurate" they are, shall we? Like "The Patriot", "Braveheart", "The Five Feathers", etc.
You may as well try to figure out which Hessian regiment Yosemite Sam belongs to, and then whine that the lace is incorrect.

Darrell B D Day07 Jul 2006 3:23 a.m. PST

This is not nit-picking. It is a discussion.


Lowtardog07 Jul 2006 4:14 a.m. PST

John I agree on the film side but CC is actually after some Brits for 1797 and as the thread goes, he would be wrong buying miniatures for the 1700s-1730s if he was basing it on the film which would require 7 years war or later. When in fact CC is after early Napoleonic and as guys have pointed out, would be specific with white tropical gear rather than Red coats.

I love the movie. Anyway I thought Yosemite Sam was a Colonel in the Iron Brigade ;0)

Rob Kamm07 Jul 2006 4:28 a.m. PST

Wait a second, we're complaining about uniforms in a movie where:

Cursed pirates parade around without their skin in the moonlight?

Ships with standing water above the bilge, and no intact sails can outsail the "pride of the Royal Navy in the Caribbean?"

Ships' cannon could fire on a prison so far above the water that prisoners were looking down at the topsails?

Kiera Knightly wears a corset and a bra?

Just checking.


Lowtardog07 Jul 2006 4:36 a.m. PST

No No No, I wasnt complaining we are missing the point that CC wanted to know if the uniforms were right for

"I am interested in what the British soldiers in the Caribbean wore in 1797, when they attacked Puerto Rico"

to which the answer is no :0)but also tried to point out that they were wrong for the film which correct is Fantasy.

Oh I give up ;0)

Jana Wang07 Jul 2006 7:20 a.m. PST

The short answer is yes, the costumes are from the 1700's. The longer answer is that the costumes have been freely mixed from that century and the previous one, with some fantasy thrown in for good measure. Rather than have everyone dressed alike, they chose to use different time periods for different characters, to make them more distinct.

This article discusses some of the costumes from the first movie: link

And this one is about the Navy uniforms: link

rmaker07 Jul 2006 8:11 a.m. PST

For CC – the Marines (not yet Royal in 1797) would have worn a uniform similar to that 2nd from the right in the lower row of the picture that lowtardog linked to, but with white facings. And possibly, but not likely, with the round hats worn later in the Napoleonic era.

Cacique Caribe07 Jul 2006 8:31 a.m. PST

As some of you have already voiced, I was wondering if the costumes depicted in POTC were what the brits wore in the Caribbean in 1797.

I really want to thank you guys for all the fantastic feedback and links. This is an entirely new period for me and, until now, I did not know the difference between costumes of the early and late 1700's.

As I kept digging last night, after TMP shut down for maintenance, this is something else I found which, together with the information you guys provide here, definitely convinces me that I was looking at costumes that were way too early:


I truly appreciate all your input.


TredHedJon07 Jul 2006 8:55 a.m. PST

Just to input a little here (even though its not about the timeline of the outfits themselves)

From what I've read for the 3rd film is that the age of pricay is coming to a close…if that helps at all for when Pirates is set.

As for the discusion on the outfits themselves, its interesting. Thanks for info all.

Doc Ord07 Jul 2006 9:53 a.m. PST

A possible "100 Club"figure might be Hessian Sam.How about Regiment von Yosemite? 1797 British infantry for India or the Carribean would be in round hats, red or white shell jackets & white mosquito trousers.

Cacique Caribe14 Jun 2007 4:55 p.m. PST

For suggestions for the East India Company . . .

TMP link


The Beast Rampant14 Jun 2007 8:02 p.m. PST

"You may as well try to figure out which Hessian regiment Yosemite Sam belongs to, and then whine that the lace is incorrect."

I have always been meaning to check on that! "I'm a Hessian without no aggression." Best Bugs Bunny cartoon ever!

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.