Unlike the more general symbols of death such as the skull and skeleton, the skull coupled with a pair of crossed long bones has had specific meanings. In the 17th and 18th centuries it was used as the Jolly Roger among pirate seamen. The origin of the name Jolly Roger is unclear–as with so many maritime symbols. It may have come from “Old Roger” which was slang for the devil. It may have come from the french for “red beauty” or joli rouge which likely referred to red flags (symbolizing blood) used by feared privateers in the 1700s. No matter its origin, however, its intent was clear: it was an intimidating signal to all who could see it that pirates were on board and ready to capture or kill as many people as necessary in order to secure another ship’s bounty.