Tag Archives: King Neptune’s Court

An Encounter with the Pollywogs at King Neptune’s Court

In the 13th century, ships celebrated crossing the equator or Crossing the Line with an initiation ceremony overseen by King Neptune and his court.  Pollywogs (those who had not crossed the Equator on a previous voyage) were coated with various nasty liquids found in the bilge of the ship, suspended by their ankles, and plunged into the sea.

In the ceremony we observed initiates were coated with spaghetti and colorful substances prepared in the ship’s galley, given the opportunity to kiss a fish, and then encouraged to jumped into the pool.

King Neptune presides over his Court

Getting slathered

All ages participated

Kissing the Fish

Even the females got slathered

Another Pollywog gets initiated

No mercy is shown for this Pollywog

But he still gets up and makes his way to kiss the fish