Captain Flint

Captain Flint

Captain J. Flint (sometimes also referenced as "Joseph" or "Joe Flint") was the possibly fictional [Flint may have been based on a real person. According to French author Pierre Mac Orlan, Flint is mentioned by a certain M.C. Whitehead in his "Life of the English thieves and pirates". Mac Orlan wrote this in his introduction for a French translation of Captain Johnson's "General History of the pyrates" in 1921 (see Pierre Mac Orlan, "A Bord de L'Etoile Matutine", Gallimard, coll. folio, Paris, 1983, p. 208 (French language))] notorious captain of a Pirate ship, the "Walrus", in the novel "Treasure Island" of the Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894).Flint was responsible for burying an enormous treasure on a fictional West Indian island, in which he was assisted by six of his crew-members. After the treasure was buried, he murdered all six of them and left the seaman Allardyce with outstretched arms pointing to the location of the treasure. The location of the treasure was painted into a map that afterwards got into the hands of his helmsman William "Billy" Bones, and later into the hands of the hero of the novel, Jim Hawkins.

The only person Flint was said to fear was his quartermaster John Silver, who later even called his parrot "Captain Flint" in mockery.

Flint is said to have died at The Pirates House an inn in the American city of Savannah, shouting for "Darby McGraw - fetch aft the rum...". His death was said in the book to have been caused by the effects of rum.

Flint is also mentioned in the novel "Peter Pan" by J. M. Barrie: "Here is Bill Jukes, every inch of him tattooed, the same Bill Jukes who got six dozen on the WALRUS from Flint before he would drop the bag of moidores."

In the movie ("The Buccaneer", 1958) (with Yul Brynner), whose action takes place during the War of 1812, a character called "Capt. Flint" (played by Paul Newlan) is also involved.

It is a certainty that Stevenson knew the book "A General History of the Robberies and Murders of the Most Notorious Pyrates" (1724) by Captain Charles Johnson [probably a pen name for Daniel Defoe] and that he used some themes and characters from it.

Although Flint was only rather briefly mentioned in the novel "Treasure Island", he was shown several times in film versions of the story.

In Arthur Ransome's book "Swallows and Amazons", the Blackett's uncle James Turner is nicknamed Captain Flint by the Swallows. This is because they believed that he looked like a retired pirate and took the name from "Treasure Island". He is nearly always referred to by this name in the rest of the books.

Captain Flint also was to be seen in a glimpse in the animated feature-film "Treasure Planet" by Disney. In this film, the character was known as Nathaniel Flint, a space pirate of non-human origins whose reputation was legendary for leading his ship and crew to plundering merchant ships, infamously appearing and disappearing without a trace, and eventually burying his treasure (called by many 'Flint's Trove' and/or 'the loot of a thousand worlds') inside the giant alien mechanism known as Treasure Planet.


External links

* [ Analysis of the novel "Treasure Island"]
* [ The Pirate's House in Savannah]

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