Today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day.* It got me thinking about why there's no "International Talk Like a Knight Day" or some similar equivalent.
Our sense of what it means to "Talk Like a Pirate" comes from Robert Newton's performance of Long John Silver in Disney's 1950 version of Treasure Island. You can get a sense of it from these clips:
So, in the popular imagination, what do people in the Middle Ages talk like? Having attended enough SCA events and Ren Faires, I'm thinking it's supposed to be some approximation of Early Modern courtly speech, but is there some common origin like "pirate" talk that can be traced back to some Errol Flynn movie or something? Has anyone out there done any research on this?
*Or, "Arrr, it be International Talk Like a Pirate Day."