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"With this skin and this voice, where can I go in the world and feel at ease? This country here is my best chance. This country called Jackdaw, where I know the names of all citizens, and they know mine, and we work together. Not always out of love, but to keep our country afloat."
―Adéwalé to Edward Kenway, 1717.[src]-[m]

The Jackdaw was a brig captained by the pirate-turned-Assassin Edward Kenway, which he obtained with the help of Adéwalé, during the Golden Age of Piracy in the Caribbean.

Before Kenway's captaincy, the ship was known as El Dorado, and formed a part of the Spanish Treasure Fleet. Upon securing her, Kenway renamed the vessel Jackdaw, after the bird of the same name.

History[]

Procurement[]

The Treasure Fleet 9

Adéwalé and Edward assessing the damage done to El Dorado

After an imprisoned Edward Kenway was placed on a ship in the fleet bound for Spain, he met his future quartermaster, Adéwalé, who helped free Edward from the bilboes and assisted him in incapacitating the guards until the pirates retrieved their equipment.[1]

Following this, the pair secured a crew by freeing other prisoners from their Spanish captors, and set their sights on a brig within the fleet, El Dorado. Subsequently, Kenway used the pirates he freed to escape from the fleet under the cover of a hurricane. While El Dorado managed to successfully navigate the natural disaster, the remaining ships sank during the pursuit. Later on, Kenway then rechristened the ship the Jackdaw, after a small, swift bird from his homeland of Wales.[2]

Piracy[]

Edward: "It's a shaky feeling, sailing around with this much stolen cargo."
Hornigold: "Get used to it. We'll need to take a few more prizes to make this a profitable day."
—Edward Kenway and Benjamin Hornigold, after the Jackdaw took its first schooner, 1715.[src]

The Jackdaw's first major act of piracy took place off of the coast of Nassau in 1715, when captain Benjamin Hornigold showed Kenway how to successfully take a ship.[3] It was after this voyage that the brig was given its very own black flag.[4]

Proper Defenses 5

The Jackdaw tailing El Arca del Maestro

Soon after, it was used to transport Kenway to Cat Island to plunder a plantation, and eventually followed the Spanish Man O' War El Arca del Maestro through the Bahamas to its moorings at Great Inagua. Kenway then infiltrated the island, killed the French arms dealer and Caribbean Templar Julien du Casse, and took both the ship and the island. It was here that he would establish his own base of operations, and the Jackdaw could often be found moored at the docks in the cove.[5]

The Jackdaw traveled across the West Indies Sea to the ancient city of Tulum, home of the Caribbean Assassins, where the crew members were soon taken prisoner by Laurens Prins; Kenway soon freed his crew and they returned to sea.[6] Shortly after, the ship took its first fort, located at Punta Guarico, and made sail for Kingston.[7] After Kenway killed Prins, the ship returned to Nassau.[8]

The Siege of Charles-Towne 3

Edward steering the Jackdaw through a bayou

However, the Pirate Republic was suffering from disease, prompting Kenway to outfit the Jackdaw with a diving bell in search for medicines.[9] When he came up empty, he followed his fellow pirate Edward Thatch to Charles-Towne to secure medicines before returning again to Nassau.[10]

After the city was blockaded by the British, the Jackdaw, along with Charles Vane's ship, the Ranger, was able to escape and flee to Great Inagua.[11] There, Kenway made plans to find Thatch again and set sail for Ocracoke. When the pirates were ambushed by the Royal Navy, the Jackdaw was the only vessel to escape.[12]

The Jackdaw and the Ranger met up again off the coast of Cuba, in pursuit of a ship that would lead them to Bartholomew Roberts. However, Vane's associate Jack Rackham had engineered a mutiny, taking the Jackdaw and leaving Kenway and Vane marooned on Isla Providencia.[13]

Trust is Earned 1

The Jackdaw approaching Príncipe

Kenway managed to make his way back to Great Inagua, where Adéwalé and Mary Read had taken the Jackdaw from Rackham.[14] Kenway soon set sail again, returning to Kingston before continuing on to Príncipe, where Roberts had gone into hiding.[15] After freeing Roberts, he followed him to the coast of Mexico, where the two infiltrated and battled a Portuguese fleet before sailing for the Observatory, Kenway's ultimate goal.[16]

Along the way, the Jackdaw chased Hornigold's ship, the Benjamin, through a fog bank before Kenway assassinated his former friend, clearing the way to the Observatory.[17] When Roberts betrayed Edward deep inside the complex, Adéwalé and the crew quickly fled without their captain.[18] It would be almost a year before Kenway would be reunited with his ship in Kingston, although Adéwalé chose not to join his captain, revealing his intentions to join the Assassin Order and suggesting that Edward do the same.[19]

Alliance with the Assassins[]

Shortly thereafter, the vessel returned again to Tulum, where Edward allied himself with the Assassins and received three targets: Woodes Rogers, Laureano Torres, and Roberts. The Jackdaw's flag was replaced with one bearing an Assassin insignia, and Anne Bonny took Adéwalé's place as quartermaster.[20]

Royal Misfortune 3

The Jackdaw pursuing the Royal Fortune

Edward sailed for Kingston to eliminate Rogers. In turn, the Templar revealed Roberts' location in Príncipe, where the Jackdaw sailed next. In a tremendous battle between the Jackdaw, Roberts' ship Royal Fortune, and a Spanish fleet, Kenway managed to kill Roberts and retrieve the Observatory's Crystal Skull.[21]

The ship then carried her captain back to Havana, where Edward discovered Torres was already on his way to the Observatory.[22] He soon followed in hot pursuit, making his way through the jungle and the complex, before finally killing the Grand Master.[23] The Jackdaw then made one last trip back to Great Inagua, where Edward finally retired from piracy, deciding to care for his newly discovered daughter Jennifer Scott.[24][25]

In 1722, Edward, Jennifer, and the crew left Great Inagua and sailed the Jackdaw to Bristol in the United Kingdom, stopping on one of the islands of the Azores along the way. Near the Bristol Channel, the black flag of the Jackdaw was bought down, folded and placed carefully inside a chest in the captain's cabin. The Jackdaw then flew a Red Ensign to gain permission to dock in Bristol.[26]

Two days later, Edward used the Jackdaw as an auxiliary when he was about to kill Matthew Hague. The former pirate imprisoned Hague in the captain's cabin of his ship, the Charlotte, after which the Jackdaw's crew tossed Edward barrels of tar which he could use to set alight Hague's ship. However, Edward was interrupted by Sir Robert Walpole, who wanted to make peace between the Assassin and the Templar. The pair came to an agreement, with Edward releasing Hague and Walpole giving a pardon and small properties to the pirates.[26]

It is unknown what happened to the Jackdaw in the intervening years, but at some point prior to 1735, Edward removed its original wheel and kept it in the basement hidden below his mansion in London, where it was used as part of a mechanism to open a secret exit.[27] The brig returned to the West Indies, where she sank off the coast of Hispaniola due to unknown circumstances, though Adéwalé later recovered its figurehead from the wreckage.[28]

Schematics[]

Diving For Medicines 3

Edward using the ship's diving bell

The Jackdaw was 60 meters long from her stern to the tip of her bowsprit, 48.5 meters high, had a width of 11.9 meters, and also had twenty-six sails. Accompanying this, the Jackdaw was armed with forty-six broadside cannons, four chaser cannons, and two swivel guns. Further, she could hold 160 fire barrels, deployed four at a time, 40 volleys of heated shot, and 20 mortar rounds, and was equipped with an iron-plated naval ram. Besides her weaponry, she could also hold a maximum of 2,000 pieces of each type of cargo; sugar, rum, cloth, wood, and metal.[29]

At her strongest, the Jackdaw possessed a sizable amount of iron-plating reinforcement across her hull, which provided ample protection in combat against a number of Men O' War. The brig was able to disable and destroy any type of ship, given the proper strategy in battle.[29]

She was also equipped with a diving bell for exploration of various underwater wrecks, as well as a whaling rowboat and harpoons, which allowed Edward to hunt for local sea life. Her masts featured pedal-activated lifts and hooks to allow for both ascension and descent. The Jackdaw also had cleverly placed swinging ropes secured both on deck and in the cross-masts, which were used by the crew to swing from one ship to another during boarding, and to quickly leap off the ship into the ocean or onto land.[29]

Notable conflicts[]

Trust is Earned 2

The Jackdaw engaging Portuguese ships

While the Jackdaw did not participate in any major historical battles of the era, she still had more than her fair share of legendary combat. Notable skirmishes, such as the battle which took Blackbeard's life near Ocracoke, the conflict with Hornigold's ship, the Benjamin, and the later conflict off the coast of Príncipe – in which Bartholomew Roberts was killed – were fought on the Jackdaw's decks.[29]

The ship was a formidable raider in the Caribbean, as it single-handedly outgunned and destroyed all of the naval forts around the Caribbean over time, and took down many ships, from gunboats to Men O' War, including the five legendary ships that roamed the Caribbean Sea: El Impoluto, the twin ships HMS Fearless and Royal Sovereign, La Dama Negra, and HMS Prince.[29]

Crew[]

  • Edward Kenway – Captain (30 July 1715 – 23 November 1718, 1719 – 1723)
  • Jack Rackham – Captain (23 November 1718 – c. 23 January 1719)
  • Adéwalé – Quartermaster (1715 – 1721)
  • Anne Bonny – Quartermaster (1721 – 1722)
  • Hanley – Quartermaster (1722 - 1723)[26]
  • Birtwistle – Coxswain (1723)[26]

Behind the scenes[]

Upgrades[]

Through crafting, Edward could upgrade the Jackdaw in a number of ways to enhance its weapons strength, hull durability, speed, cargo hold, and crew capacity, and whaling equipment.

Ship cosmetics[]

A wide variety of figureheads, sail designs and wheels are available for the Jackdaw.

Figureheads[]

Image Name Description Availability
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Jackdaw figurehead The Jackdaw's figurehead A figurehead that once graced the bow of Edward Kenway's ship, the Jackdaw. Starting figurehead
ACIV - Ship Visual - Aries figurehead Aries figurehead A figurehead representing Aries 500 R
25 wood
ACIV - Ship Visual - Phoenix figurehead Phoenix figurehead A figurehead representing a rising pheonix, a legendary but likely imaginary bird. 800 R
75 wood
ACIV - Ship Visual - Mermaid figurehead Mermaid figurehead A figurehead representing a mermaid. 1250 R
150 wood
ACIV - Ship Visual - Gargoyle figurehead Gargoyle figurehead A figurehead representing a gargoyle. 2000 R
300 wood
ACIV - Ship Visual - Serpent figurehead Serpent figurehead A figurehead representing a serpent. Requires plan
3500 R
400 wood
ACIV - Ship Visual - El Impoluto's figurehead El Impoluto's figurehead A figurehead representing a saint. Rumored to have belonged to El Impoluto, one of the most dangerous ships to ever sail the West Indies. Gained by completing community challenges
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Queen Anne's figurehead The Queen Anne's figurehead A figurehead that once belonged to Blackbeard's ship, the Queen Anne's Revenge Requires plan
5000 R
500 wood
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Ranger figurehead The Ranger figurehead A figurehead which used to belong to Captain Charles Vane's ship, the Ranger Gained by completing half of the naval contracts.
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Royal Fortune's figurehead The Royal Fortune's figurehead A figurehead which used to belong to Black Bart's ship, the Royal Fortune. Collected by Kenway's Fleet.
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Aquila's figurehead The Aquila's figurehead A figurehead which would one day belong to Connor Kenway's ship, the Aquila. Gained by plundering three royal convoys.
ACIV - Ship Visual - Elite figurehead Elite figurehead A figurehead representing a Harpy, standard symbol of elite warships. Redeem on Uplay
Death Vessel figurehead Available through the Death Vessel Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Kraken figurehead Kraken figurehead Available through the Kraken Ship Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Altaïr figurehead Altaïr figurehead A figurehead crafted as a tribute to Altair, the Assassin. Available through the Crusader & Florentine Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Ezio figurehead Ezio figurehead A figurehead crafted as a tribute to Ezio, the Assassin. Available through the Crusader & Florentine Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Aveline figurehead Aveline figurehead Through a bit of Animus trickery, we fashioned a figurehead in tribute to Aveline, our first Abstergo Entertainment hero. Aveline DLC
ACIV - Ship Visual - Black Ship figurehead The Black Ship's figurehead A figurehead that once belonged to the Black Ship Black Island
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Revenge's figurehead The Revenge's figurehead A figurehead that once belonged to Stede Bonnet's ship, the Revenge. Mystery Island

Sails[]

Image Name Description Availability
ACIV - Ship Visual - White sails White sails A set of clean, white canvas sails. Starting sails
ACIV - Ship Visual - Crimson sails Crimson sails A set of red canvas sails. 500 R
25 cloth
ACIV - Ship Visual - Red-striped sails Red-striped sails A set of white canvas sails adorned with red stripes. 800 R
75 cloth
ACIV - Ship Visual - Tattered sails Tattered sails A set of tattered sails. 1250 R
150 cloth
ACIV - Ship Visual - Leather sails Leather sails A set of leather sails. 2000R
300 cloth
ACIV - Ship Visual - Flower sails Flower sails A set of sails with white floral pattern. Requires plan
3500 R
400 cloth
ACIV - Ship Visual - Black and Red sails Black and Red sails A set of black sails adorned with red and white stripes. Gained by completing community challenges.
ACIV - Ship Visual - Grey sails Grey sails A set of grey canvas sails. Requires plan
5000 R
500 cloth
ACIV - Ship Visual - Diamond sails Diamond sails A set of sails bearing diamonds patterns, praised for their beauty. Collected by Kenway's Fleet.
ACIV - Ship Visual - Gilded sails Gilded sails A set of blue sails with gilded gold patterns. Gained by completing all naval contracts.
ACIV - Ship Visual - Elite sails Elite's sails A set of sails bearing the symbol of an Elite ship. Redeem on Uplay
ACIV - Ship Visual - Queen Anne's Revenge sails Queen Anne's Revenge sails A set of sails that once belonged to Blackbeard's ship, the Queen Anne's Revenge.
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Royal Fortune's sails The Royal Fortune's sails A set of sails that once propelled Black Bart's ship, the Royal Fortune.
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Benjamin's sails The Benjamin's sails A set of sails that once propelled Benjamin Hornigold's ship, the Benjamin.
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Aquila's sails The Aquila's sails A set of sails that would later propel Connor Kenway's ship, the Aquila.
ACIV - Ship Visual - Death Vessel sails Death Vessel sails Available through the Death Vessel Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Kraken sails Kraken sails Available through the Kraken Ship Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Altaïr's sails Altaïr's sails A set of sails modeled after Altair ibn-La'Ahad's image. Available through the Crusader & Florentine Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Ezio's sails Ezio's sails A set of sails modeled after Ezio Auditore da Firenze's image. Available through the Crusader & Florentine Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Black Ship sails The Black Ship's Sails A set of sails that once propelled the Black Ship. Black Island
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Revenge's sails The Revenge's Sails A set of sails that once propelled Stede Bonnet's ship, the Revenge Mystery Island

Wheels[]

Image Name Description Availability
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Jackdaw's wheel The Jackdaw's wheel A wheel that once belonged to Edward Kenway's signature ship, the Jackdaw. Starting wheel
ACIV - Ship Visual - Bronze wheel Bronze wheel A wheel made of bronze. 500 R
25 metal
ACIV - Ship Visual - Flower wheel Flower wheel A wheel altered to form a symbol of a flower. 800 R
75 metal
ACIV - Ship Visual - Phoenix wheel Phoenix wheel A wheel made of brown wood with a golden metal circlet. 1250 R
150 metal
ACIV - Ship Visual - Eye of the Sea wheel Eye of the Sea wheel A wheel made of dark brown with metal diamonds. 2000 R
300metal
ACIV - Ship Visual - Blackwood wheel Blackwood wheel A wheel made of sturdy blackwood. Requires plan
3500 R
400 metal
ACIV - Ship Visual - El Impoluto's wheel El Impoluto's wheel A wheel rumored to belong to the El Impoluto, one of the most dangerous ships across the West Indies. Gained by completing community challenges.
ACIV - Ship Visual - The Aquila's wheel The Aquila's wheel A wheel that will one day belong to Connor Kenway's ship, the Aquila. Requires plan
5000 R
500 metal
ACIV - Ship Visual - Gilded wheel Gilded wheel A wheel made of dark brown wood with inlaid rubies. Obtained as a reward of the Kenway’s Fleet.
ACIV - Ship Visual - Queen Anne's Revenge wheel Queen Anne's Revenge wheel A wheel that once belonged to Blackbeard's ship, the Queen Anne's Revenge. Gained by completing half of the naval contracts.
Silver wheel A wheel made entirely of silver.
ACIV - Ship Visual - Elite wheel Elite wheel A wheel made of gold, symbol of elite ships. Redeem on Uplay
Death Vessel wheel Available through the Death Vessel Pack
ACIV - Ship Visual - Kraken wheel Kraken wheel Available through the Kraken Ship Pack
Ivory wheel A wheel made entirely of ivory. Available through the Illustrious Pirates Pack
Iron wheel Available through the Illustrious Pirates Pack

Trivia[]

  • When the Jackdaw was owned by the Spanish Navy, it was the only military-class ship with swivel guns and fire barrels, and also to have cannons on the main deck.
  • Like many other references to the Assassin Order involving avians, a jackdaw is a small, black bird belonging to the crow family. Coincidentally, the color of the bird's feathers themselves could also be a reference to piracy often being symbolized by black.
    • Jackdaw are prominently featured in both Greek and Welsh folklore as creatures of extreme vanity and thieves of anything shiny, as well as acting as omens of death and calamity. In Aesop's fable The Vain Jackdaw, a jackdaw sought to become king of the birds by adorning himself with the feathers of other birds. Such tales are great illustrations of the motivations attributed to pirates like Edward Kenway.
  • The former name of the ship, El Dorado, is Spanish for "the gilded one; the golden". It is also a name of a legendary city filled with treasures that several explorers and adventurers sought to find, referencing Edward's desire for fame and wealth.
  • In the captain's cabin, there was a statue of a vulture near the Jackdaw's rear window. There was also a bust of an unknown man in the right corner. Other cabin decorations included several flags, lanterns, a desk, and some chairs, along with a miniature model of the ship and a tailor's mannequin.
  • The Jackdaw initially flew a plain black flag, then a pirate flag with just a skull, first seen in the memory "Raise the Black Flag", and afterwards for most of Jackdaw's time under Kenway's command. After Edward defended the Assassins from a Spanish raid in the memory "...Everything Is Permitted", the flag changed to include the Assassin insignia around the skull.
  • At elite level, most of the Jackdaw's equipment, including the swivel guns, broadside, and mortars, were plated gold. The elite hull upgrade also included liberal gold and iron plating on the ship's hull and deck.
  • After defeating all legendary ships, the Jackdaw gained a charge attack, allowing her to inflict greater damage on an enemy ship.
  • The Jackdaw's crew was composed of mixed races and ethnicities. Sailors that joined Edward hailed from a variety of places, including Britain, Spain, Italy, Germany, and several countries in Africa, among others.
  • The Jackdaw's sail positioning did not extend horizontally as far as the other brigs encountered in the West Indies, resembling the positioning of a frigate more closely.
  • The 'Black Skull Sails' that could be obtained for the Jackdaw were referred to as the 'Jackdaw's sails' in Assassin's Creed: Rogue.
  • The Jackdaw, the Experto Crede, the Morrigan, and later the Aquila all feature cannons on the top deck, even though placing them there would add too much weight to the ship and would likely cause it to sink. The cannons would also be trip hazards, as the top deck is meant for sailing purposes. It was decided to overlook this inconsistency for the Jackdaw in order to add to the sense of progression when upgrading the ship and to make it easier for players to know which cannons were being fired.[30]
  • In real life, with 46 cannons, the Jackdaw would be considered a fifth-rate frigate, by the standard classification of the Royal Navy.
  • In Assassin's Creed: The Essential Guide, the Jackdaw is referred to as a brigantine. This is erroneous because on a brigantine, the mainsail is gaff rigged with the sails above it square rigged. On a brig such as the Jackdaw, the entire mast is dominated by square rigged sails (i.e. the mainsail is also square rigged), with a small, gaff rigged fore-and-aft sail as a supplementary component.

Gallery[]

Appearances[]

References[]

  1. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagThe Treasure Fleet
  2. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagThis Tyro Captain
  3. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagPrizes and Plunder
  4. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagRaise the Black Flag
  5. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagA Single Madman
  6. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagOverrun and Outnumbered
  7. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagThe Forts
  8. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagUnmanned
  9. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagDiving for Medicines
  10. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagThe Siege of Charles-Towne
  11. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagThe Fireship
  12. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagDo Not Go Gently...
  13. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagVainglorious Bastards
  14. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagImagine My Surprise
  15. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagTrust Is Earned
  16. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagBlack Bart's Gambit
  17. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagMurder and Mayhem
  18. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagThe Observatory
  19. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagDelirium
  20. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag...Everything Is Permitted
  21. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagRoyal Misfortune
  22. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagTainted Blood
  23. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagEver a Splinter
  24. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagThe End
  25. Assassin's Creed IV: Black FlagHow Grand, Master Kenway!
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 26.3 Assassin's Creed: Black Flag [citation needed]
  27. Assassin's Creed: SyndicatePlaying It by Ear
  28. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag – Freedom Cry
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 29.3 29.4 Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag
  30. Lewis, Anne (26 September 2013). Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag – Historical Accuracy vs. Gameplay. Ubisoft. Archived from the original on 6 December 2013. Retrieved on 20 October 2014.

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