Pirate Wedding Ceremony

The reason I ended up writing the LOLCat wedding ceremony is because some friends of mine asked me to officiate at a pirate wedding. They wanted something fun and complete secular, and hey, I was glad to help out. Of course, I had to have a costume.

Stephen officiating a pirate wedding

(Picture courtesy John Schultz.) I managed to rope my mother-in-law into making me a shirt, and as a gift the bride made the vest and pants for me. As you can see, I’m reading from the holy tome “How I Became a Pirate”, by Melinda Long and David Shannon.

I couldn’t find a pirate-themed ceremony, so ended up putting together one of my own. Of course I have to share that ceremony with you, dear Internet.

Rogues, scoundrels, roustabouts, privateers, pirates, and even ninjas1, we have come together on this Saturday to witness the joining of person 1 and person 2.

person 1 and person 2, you are entering into a commitment born of love. Before these witnesses you are joining together, creating a union that involves both joy and responsibility. You must enter into your marriage with no lien on either of your ships or crew, free of other commitments. Bring forward the sword! [Someone brings forward a sword.]

Do you both swear on this sword that there is no reason why your union cannot proceed? [With luck the answer is "no".]

[To person 1:] What is your full name and rank?
What do you desire? ["This woman’s hand in marriage" or somesuch]
Will you have this woman as your partner? Will you love her, comfort her, and honor her? Will you protect her, no matter who might board your ship and attempt to wrest her from you, as long as you both do love? [Aye.]

[To person 2] What is your full name and rank?
What do you desire? ["This man’s hand in marriage."]
Will you have this man as your partner? Will you love him, comfort him, and honor him? Will you protect him, no matter who might board your ship and attempt to wrest him from you, as long as you both do love? [Aye.]

[To audience:] A marriage is more than two people. It is also the trusty crew that surrounds them and helps them. person 1 and person 2’s marriage will be blessed by your support. All who would provide that support, say “Arr!” [Arr!]

[Vows go here.]

The rings, please. [Someone brings the rings.]

The ring is the most instantly recognized symbol of marriage. The ring is a circle, indicating the infinity of unbroken love. Like life, it returns back upon itself. Whether the rings are lovingly bought, taken as part of rightful plunder, or stolen from a sunken chest, they symbolize the happiness, wholeness, and love of your marriage. Your exchange of rings shows how your lives are now intertwined.

person 1, place the ring on person 2’s hand and repeat after me:

I give you this ring / as a symbol of our love. / It is a reminder of / our promises / to each other.

person 2, repeat after me:

I wear this ring / as a symbol of our love. / It will remind me / of our promises / to each other.

person 2, place the ring on person 1’s hand and repeat after me:

I give you this ring / as a symbol of our love. / It is a reminder of / our promises / to each other.

person 1, repeat after me:

I wear this ring / as a symbol of our love. / It will remind me / of our promises / to each other.

Bring forward the sword again! [Again with the sword sword.]

When you both jump over this sword, it symbolizes you cutting past ties and moving into the future together. [The couple jumps the sword.]

May your wedding be blessed, and may it be spoken of wherever the Jolly Roger flies. I now pronounce you man and wife. You may both kiss.

I am honored to present person 1 and person 2. Three cheers! Hip hip – [HOORAY!] Hip hip – [HOORAY!] Hip hip – [HOORAY!]

Yo ho ho, me hearties! Drink up!

1 We had two people dressed as ninjas2 at the wedding, one of whom was in the wedding party. (back)

2 That is, two ninjas that we could see.

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23 Comments

  1. on June 4, 2008 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    What you needed was a ninja photographer. ;)

  2. Tombstone
    on June 4, 2008 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    Nah, we had a Pirate in the Crow’s Nest and like three more roaming the ship. I think there’s something like 30 pages of Flicker pics.

    ‘Twas a nice ceremony, Stephen. Short, to the point, on-theme, and only taking about 5 minutes out of the 12 hours of drinking.

    Arr!

  3. Lisa
    on June 4, 2008 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    OMG! Stephen you are brilliant and timely! A good friend’s daughter just became engaged and her mom confided that she and her beloved were contemplating a wedding in pirate garb! Jess is gonna love this!

  4. on June 4, 2008 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

    Great! They’re welcome to take it and change it however they need.

  5. Sean
    on June 5, 2008 at 3:09 am | Permalink

    Would this mean the ceremony is Arrrrrghpen Source?

  6. on June 5, 2008 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    Oh ow ow ow.

  7. Missy K
    on June 5, 2008 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    Are you actually authorized to officiate at weddings? I’m just thinking of my girls’ three weddings in the future and how I could avoid paying someone for this service. I doubt they’ll marry pirates, but you never know.

  8. on June 5, 2008 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    I am, though I’m only willing to do secular weddings — in other words, functioning like a Justice of the Peace, only without having to listen to people argue about traffic violations.

  9. on June 5, 2008 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    My favorite line is “Will you protect him, no matter who might board your ship and attempt to wrest him from you, as long as you both do love?”

    Because of the word “love” instead of the word “life.”

    Lovely ceremonial words!

  10. on June 5, 2008 at 11:47 pm | Permalink

    stephen
    you did a great job. i was so happy to see everyone again and the wedding was great. we came back tot the house after dinner for a nice bonfire and just hung out with bill and cat. see yall soon

  11. on June 18, 2008 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    Love the vows. We gave them a plug in our blog (http://talk.lcipaper.com/b2evolution/index.php).

    For a great post on pirate weddings, check out:
    Love on the High Seas: A Pirate-Theme Wedding at:
    http://www.favorideas.com/wedding-themes/beach-themes/pirate-theme-wedding/

  12. on June 20, 2008 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    Cracking article, mind if I add it to my site ?

  13. on June 21, 2008 at 12:18 am | Permalink

    If you would, instead please just have a link back to here. Thanks!

  14. on April 9, 2009 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    I love the vows! I wish we could of used something like this when my husband and I were married.

  15. Jingles
    on January 23, 2011 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

    Been looking for pirate vows to use at Anachrocon – and these may be featured!!!

  16. on January 23, 2011 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

    Feel free! I’m not going to Anachrocon myself, but several of my friends are, and my friends’ band Play It With Moxie will be playing on Friday night.

  17. Mana
    on February 1, 2011 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    This is amazing!
    I am having a Pirate wedding and I’ve been looking for Ceremony words and vows!
    May I use this?

  18. on February 1, 2011 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    You bet!

  19. on March 29, 2011 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    I’ve been getting ideas for theme articles for my website. This pirate theme is very unique. You did a great job on the ceremony.

  20. Sam
    on April 18, 2011 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    wow this is absolutely fantastic, im going to be a pirate bride soon myself, and u are sure this is ok to use right? cause i love it!!!!

  21. on April 20, 2011 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    I’m sure!

  22. Melissa Julian
    on September 13, 2012 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    I would like to ask if I may use some parts of your ceremony for a wedding I am doing at the Las Vegas Age of Chivalry Ren Fair.

  23. on September 13, 2012 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Absolutely!

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