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|Port of registry|
170 feet (51.816 metres)
34 feet (10.3632 metres)
|Behind the scenes|
The HMS Dauntless was one of the strongest ships in the British Royal Navy serving under King George II, most notably under the command of Commodore James Norrington. As one of the Empire's premiere warships and renowned pride of the Royal Navy, this ship was agile, fast, and carried 100 guns, making her a force to be reckoned with. Paired with the HMS Interceptor, both ships became the scourge of piracy in the Caribbean for years to come.
The Dauntless was used to carry Governor Weatherby Swann and his daughter Elizabeth from England to the Caribbean, though they came upon the wreckage of a merchant vessel en route and rescued the sole survivor. From there, the Dauntless served as the power of those waters as the flagship of Norrington's men stationed at Port Royal. After Elizabeth Swann was kidnapped by the cursed pirate crew of the Black Pearl, Jack Sparrow and Will Turner used the Dauntless in their plan to commandeer the Interceptor so they could sail it out to sea to save Elizabeth. The cursed pirates later staged a surprise attack on the Dauntless, in which Norrington's men defeated the pirates. While Norrington was pursuing Jack Sparrow and the Black Pearl, they came across a hurricane off Tripoli. Norrington ordered the crew to pursue their quarry regardless, but the hurricane proved too powerful to navigate and the Dauntless was destroyed.
Crossing from England
A first-rate ship of the line, the earliest known use of the Dauntless was that it carried Governor Weatherby Swann and his daughter, Elizabeth, from England to Port Royal, Jamaica eight years prior to James Norrington's promotion to the rank of commodore. At this time, Norrington served on board as a lieutenant, with Joshamee Gibbs as one of the crew. Sailing through a ghostly fog, with her bow emerging from it with an eerie creaking and groaning, it was the Dauntless that happened upon the wreck of a merchant vessel destroyed by the Black Pearl, and its crew saved the only survivor; a young Will Turner floating on debris from the ship, who accompanied those onboard to Port Royal. Caught up in the investigation of the merchant vessel's wreckage, nobody aboard the Dauntless spotted the responsible party slip away through the fog, save the young Elizabeth.
Based out of Port Royal, the HMS Dauntless became known as the power in the Caribbean over the next eight years, presumably under the command of now-Captain Norrington, and was the scourge of many a pirate organization. Even the cursed crew of the Black Pearl showed fear at the vessel's name, such was its reputation. Captain Jack Sparrow himself pointed out that with a ship like the Dauntless, the much smaller HMS Interceptor seemed rather superfluous to be guarding. However, after Norrinton was promoted as Commodore, the Black Pearl launched an attack on Port Royal to secure the last of 882 Aztec coins hoarded at Isla de Muerta. The Dauntless apparently did not participate in the battle, since Commodore Norrington himself remained at Fort Charles during the siege. The attack concluded with he withdrawl of the pirates, with the governor's daughter in tow. The Dauntless, though fast for a ship of her class, was passed over in favour of the smaller, lighter HMS Inerceptor for immediate pursuit of the pirates.
Temporarily taking the Dauntless
The Dauntless remained anchored at the Port Royal harbor when not in use, and it was from here that Captain Jack Sparrow and his accomplice, Will Turner, attempted to commandeer it following the raid. The pirates boarded and took control of the vessel, forcing Lieutenant Gillette and his men into the longboats, but the two were unable to steer the ship into open water by themselves. The Commodore's men caught up in the HMS Interceptor and boarded the Dauntless, only to find the ship deserted. Stealing the Dauntless had not been Sparrow's intention at all—as he proved by brazenly commandeering the Interceptor. Before Norrington could pursue the pirate or even attack his own ship, the steersman discovered that the rudder chain was disabled by Jack, to ensure they were not followed. This resulted in the Dauntless crashing into Gillette's longboat, though they jumped overboard before they met the same fate, and Norrington and Theodore Groves were left to observe the escape of their quarry.
Isla de Muerta
- "Mr. Sparrow, you will accompany these fine men to the helm and provide us with a bearing to Isla de Muerta. You will then spend the rest of the voyage contemplating all possible meanings of the phrase 'silent as the grave'. Do I make myself clear?"
- ―James Norrington and Jack Sparrow
The rudder chain was ultimately repaired, in time for Norrington to launch a search for Elizabeth Swann, who had been captured during the Pearl's earlier attack on Port Royal. Her smoke signal was spotted by the Dauntless on a desert island, and both Swann and Sparrow—marooned along with the girl by Hector Barbossa—were brought aboard. Sparrow convinced Norrington to pursue and ambush the Black Pearl at Isla de Muerta, but the ambush soon turned against the Navy marines when Barbossa's cursed pirates infiltrated the Dauntless by walking across the seafloor directly beneath her hull and engaged its crew in combat while the governor hid in the captain's cabin. Many a British soldier and sailor perished before Norrington joined the fight, sailing through a hail of shots fired from the Dauntless's own cannons by the cursed pirates. It was only once Will Turner lifted the pirates' curse that battle turned in favour of the British. With the enemy's advantage lost, the marines recaptured their vessel and placed the surviving pirates under arrest.
Pursuit of the Black Pearl
The Dauntless returned to Port Royal to imprison the pirates and convey Jack Sparrow to his execution in Fort Charles, though the pirate again escaped Norrington's clutches. The Commodore, overwhelmed by recent events, forestalled pursuit for a day, but soon continued his chase of the new captain of the Black Pearl.
During one of his later pursuits, Norrington almost had caught the Black Pearl off the coast of Tripoli, until they came across a hurricane. Refusing to allow his quarry to escape, Norrington had the Dauntless steer right into the hurricane after them, but the ship quickly began to fall to the immense powere of nature. Norrington and most of the crew survived, but the Dauntless was destroyed by the hurricane during the pursuit. Because of her loss, Norrington resigned his position and went into exile in Tortuga, eventually joining the crew of the Black Pearl. She was replaced as the Navy's pride by the HMS Providence.
Design and appearance
A first rate ship of the line like the HMS Dauntless carried more cannons than many other ships of war, being an over 100-gun ship.It was equipped with 35lbs cannons, 52 on portside- and starboard-battery and each 2 at the bow and the stern, allowing her a considerable advantage in battle. Proudly flying the Blue Ensign, the Dauntless was the greatest power in the waters around Port Royal, and the pride of the King's Navy. Agile and fast, she was well known by the pirates in the Caribbean, even the cursed crew of the Black Pearl, who all feared her firepower. Despite being fast for a ship of her class and size, she was not suited to chases and this duty was usually occupied by the smaller but faster HMS Interceptor. However, not even she was a match for the power of nature, as she met her demise in a hurricane off the coast of Tripoli.
Behind the scenes
- For filming The Curse of the Black Pearl, the Dauntless was portrayed by a floating set build atop of barges.
- The HMS Dauntless was inspired by the HMS Victory, a Royal Navy ship of the line which still exists. The Victory was a famous 100-gun ship that won countless battles during its heyday, and the pride of the British fleet. Because no such ships exist as of 2003, the company was forced to recreate portions of the vessel using models of its vintage predecessor.
- In the non-canonical Disney Adventures comic book The Buccaneer's Heart!, the Cursed crew, led by Bo'sun, commandeers the Dauntless with Weatherby and Elizabeth Swann on board. Fortunately, the combined efforts of Jack Sparrow's crew and the spirits of the Buccaneer's Heart drove the pirates off, and the Dauntless was returned to Norrington.
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (First appearance)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Legend of Jack Sparrow
- The Buccaneer's Heart! (Non-canonical appearance)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: A Storm at Sea
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (Indirect mention only)
- LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean: The Video Game (Non-canonical appearance)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (junior novelization)
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Legend of Jack Sparrow
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Visual Guide
- Pirates of the Caribbean: The Complete Visual Guide
- The Art of Pirates of the Caribbean
- The Secret Files of the East India Trading Company
Notes and references
- ↑ The Secret Files of the East India Trading Company, p17
- ↑ In one of the previous versions of the official POTC website, it was said that the Dauntless was the ship James Norrington lost in Dead Man's Chest.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Pirates of the Carribean presskit, accessed Dec 9, 2006
- ↑ Wordplay: Pirates of the Caribbean first draft screenplay
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 An Epic At Sea: The Making of "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse Of The Black Pearl" and the commentaries to the movie.
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
- ↑ Pirates of the Caribbean: A Storm at Sea
- ↑ The Pirates Tales: After the Curse
- ↑ Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (junior novelization)
- ↑ Bring Me That Horizon: The Making of Pirates of the Caribbean, p101.
- ↑ The Buccaneer's Heart!
|v • d • eCrew of the HMS Dauntless|
|British Royal Navy ships in Pirates of the Caribbean|