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Magic

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For other uses, see Magic (disambiguation)
You're in one

Hector Barbossa magically transformed into a living skeleton under the moonlight.

"Esmeralda, you've been sailing around the Caribbean for a long time. You know about curses, and magic, and hoodoo, and Obeah. You know that, in the Caribbean, they really exist. Right?"
Jack Sparrow to Esmeralda[src]

Magic was the practice of supernatural powers that encompassed many different types of activities including astrology, ceremony, divination, rituals, spells, and spirit communication. It included the practices of many cultures, nations and religions as well as many books and writings from ancient times. Depending upon the individual, some magicians practiced their power by certain belief systems, such as Druidism, Shamanism, Voodoo, or any number of other magical practices from countries and cultures all around the world. While magic itself was entirely neutral (neither bad nor good), magic could often be used for either negative or positive purposes. Furthermore, unlike other forms of magic, Dark Magic was a form of sorcery that is malevolent by nature and could only be used for malefic purposes.


History

Ancient times

"They say the pharaohs were all buried with heaps of gold and gems. Picture us finding some old pharaoh’s final resting place."
"La Vipère has too much draft to make it up the Nile, Jacques. Besides... didn’t those Egyptian priests have magical powers? You want to talk about curses, mon ami...
"
Jack Sparrow and Christophe-Julien de Rapièr[src]

Over the course of time, magic has been practiced in many cultures, and utilized ways of understanding, experiencing and influencing the world somewhat akin to those offered by religion, though it was sometimes regarded as more focused on achieving results than religious worship. Magic was often viewed with suspicion by the wider community, and was commonly practiced in isolation and secrecy.

SwordOfTriton

The Sword of Triton

The Sword of Triton, a magical blade with great powers, was believed to have been forged by the Greek god Triton himself.[1] Triton's father, the god Poseidon, also possessed a magical weapon, the legendary Trident of Poseidon.[2] The sea goddess Calypso designed a special metal chamber in which the mermaids locked Poseidon's magical gems, thus making themselves immune to the power of the Trident.[3]

The priests of Ancient Egypt and Kush were known to use magic. Their magic was powered by the green jewel that was given to them by the god Apedemak himself. When some of the Kushites moved to an island in the Atlantic Ocean, they took the jewel with them, continuing to practice their magic in their new homeland.[4]

Age of Discovery

"This is the cursed sword that gave Cortés the power to conquer the Aztec empire! Legend has it that the sword made him unstoppable in battle....And it gave him strange powers, like convincing the Aztecs that he was a god."
Arabella Smith about the Sword of Cortés[src]

By the time of the age of discovery, the use of magic among the Europeans was in decline. However, after the discovery of the Americas in 1492, several individuals who came to the New World used magic in their conquests of new lands. The Spanish Conquistador Hernán Cortés used a magical sword which made him unstoppable in battle. The powers of the sword convinced the Aztecs that Cortés was a god in human form.[5]

Cortés and his armies quickly conquered the Aztec Empire, slaughtering the Aztecs. Desperate, the Aztecs placed 882 identical pieces of Aztec gold in a stone chest which they gave to Cortés, hoping that he'll stop the carnage. But instead of satisfying Cortés, it merely fueled his greed. In response, the heathen gods placed a curse upon the gold: any mortal who removed a piece of the gold from the chest would be punished for eternity. The only way to lift the curse was to return all the Aztec gold pieces to the chest and a blood debt repaid to the heathen gods. Ultimately, the cursed treasure of Cortés would end up in the caves of Isla de Muerta, an island that could only be found by those who knew where it was.[6] Over time, the dark magic of the treasure cursed the island itself.[7]

At some point during his operations against the Spanish in the Caribbean, the notorious English privateer Francis Drake pillaged a huge pile of gold and silver. Among the treasure were two magical stones, one purple that protects from curses, and the other white that brings fortune and eternal glory. When he discovered Isla Cueva, a rocky island in the Caribbean Sea, Drake decided to hide the treasure there. Drake's men transported the treasure to the grotto deep inside the island, and put several traps on the way to it. For more than a century, the stones and the treasure would remain untouched.[8]

At some point during the early 17th century, the sea goddess Calypso fell in love with a sailor named Davy Jones. Because of that love, Jones agreed to an immortal life, with a single day out of every decade to spend with Calypso. In exchange, Jones would ferry the souls of those who died at sea into the afterlife, as well as saving those who were shipwrecked and drowning. To carry out the duty, Calypso gave him the Flying Dutchman, a ship with the magical ability to sail to the world of the dead and back.[9]

Age of Piracy

"Our mischief interrupted Tang's spell. Magic is among the most finicky of sciences."
Jack Sparrow to Will Turner[src]
AWEJackCompassFountainSearch

Jack Sparrow's compass was one of many known magical items in the Caribbean.

By the 17th century, the Age of Piracy began. According to legend, when the First Brethren Court convened, the pirate captains made an alliance with Davy Jones to tear the rule of the seas away from Calypso. Jones showed them how to bind her, revealing them the secrets from the Journal of the Ancient Seas.[10] While the pirates wanted to secure the rule of the seas for themselves, Davy Jones plotted with the Brethren because he felt betrayed after he didn't find Calypso waiting for him after he carried out his ten-year duty. The Pirate Lords used the nine pieces of eight to bind Calypso in her bones, and the powerful magic trapped her in the human form of Tia Dalma.[9]

In 1630, the undead crew of the ghost ship known as the Black Pearl terrorized the Caribbean. Their reign of terror ended when Nathaniel Hawk and Danielle Greene found a mystical Incan artifact and used its magical powers to destroy the dreaded ship.[11]

When the Pirate Lord Henry Morgan abandoned his position in the Brethren Court, he retreated to a secret hideout where he began to study sorcery, alchemy, and all kinds of magic. He also discovered a way to live forever, and was able to prolong his life for several decades.[12]

Over the next decades, many kinds of magic could be found in the Caribbean. The former sea goddess Calypso, now trapped in the body of Tia Dalma, became a well known Voodoo priestess, capable of performing magic spells of all sorts.

Behind the scenes

"Heartier souls than I thought ye'd be. Aye, you must be stouthearted, indeed, to enter this cursed place. Ah, but there be magic here too, mateys. Anything can happen, as...you...shall...see."
Talking Skull[src]

Appearances

Sources

External links

Notes and references

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