Curse of the Female Sailor Myth in Axora | World Anvil

Curse of the Female Sailor

The supposed curse of females aboard ships is a well held belief in some parts of the world. Though, thankfully it is one belief that is changing
— Isarilla Verde, Myths of Aldenia

The Curse

In some coastal communities, there is the belief that having a female crew member is unlucky and will bring bad fortune upon the ship. For thousands of years, across most of the continents women were not allowed to become sailors. Even in the parts of the world that did allow it, if they sailed into a port where the belief was strong, they would be shunned upon arrival. They would be allowed to do their business, so long as they wrapped it up and went on their way as quickly as possible.  


This superstition is not held in Drassau, the island continent. Since a significant portion of the population of Drassau live on islands or close to the sea, sailing is almost a necessity there. In Drassau culture, they recognise successful sailing is as much down to the winds as it is the waters. As such, they believe women to be just as important as men, since the god of wind is a woman (Essina). Though, all sailing communities worship the pair of gods, for some reason this acceptance is only prevalent in Drassau. Or it least that was the case until the Sisters of the Sea arose.  

The Sisters of the Sea

Frustrated with this curse, Etta Maxime, stole her father's ship. With a crew of women she sailed off into the night. Five years later, she is the leader of the fearsome Sisters of the Sea. They have terrorised the oceans, targeting and stealing from trading vessels. At first, the trading companies brought on female crew members as a way of potentially appeaing the Sisters if they were attacked. More often than not, though, if the Sisters attacked a vessel with such a token female aboard, they would simply enlist the woman into their own ranks along with taking whatever they wanted. However, now, women are allowed to become sailors if they so desire in Brinewatch, where Etta was from, along with Oakharbour and Ialos. Some older male sailors still hold on to the superstition, though, so finding a place can be tricky  


No one knows where the superstition came from initially.
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