55

Why do they call him "Whitebeard"?

He doesn't even have a beard!

Whitebeard

  • 21
    lol, that trollface whitebeard – StackedCrooked Feb 17 '13 at 13:00
  • LOL, that last image is funny. :) – user1403 Feb 17 '13 at 17:55
  • Language - I love it. In some languages, that's called a beard, too, for example German (Schnurrbart, Oberlippenbart). – looper Feb 19 '13 at 11:20
  • 2
    Imagine the disaster if they call him "WHITEMOUSTACHE".. lol – maseru Aug 31 '13 at 4:06
  • @maseru For laughs, here you can read the disaster on a page from chapter 133, where the name originally was translated as "moustache" as in "The Black Moustache Pirates destroyed Drum island." – Peter Raeves Jun 24 '15 at 21:11
53

Edward Newgate's nickname in Japanese is Shirohige (shiro = white, hige = facial hair). Japanese does not distinguish between beard and moustache1. However, a literal translation White Facial Hair sounds a pretty poor nickname for one of the World's strongest pirates, and even sounds comedic. Whitemoustache isn't much better either. Whitebeard has a nice ring to it.

Also, 's Lucy's nickname for the Celestial Spirit King is "hige-oyaji" (translated as moustache-man, in context), and he has only a moustache, which suggests that "hige" is used to refer to both moustache and beard in Japanese.


1: Google Translate says that "Beard" is "Agohige", and "Moustache" is "Kuchihige". However, they did not call him "Shirokuchihige" in the original, so the distinction seems to be not widely used.

  • 2
    However, a literal translation "White Facial Hair" lol, +1 just for that – SingerOfTheFall Feb 21 '13 at 5:28
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    i think also the decision to use Whitebeard in translation was also reinforced by Blackbeard, a well known pirate, after all, you can't really have a pirate series without some sort of reference too him, even if it's a change to the first part of his name – Memor-X Dec 3 '13 at 21:16
13

Why is Blackbeard called Blackbeard when he only has perma-stubble? Whitebeard´s flawless mustache is manlier than a thousand normal beards.

And I quote:

A beard is the collection of hair that grows on the chin, upper lip, cheeks and neck of human beings.

A mustache is also a beard.

  • 1
    "A mustache is also a beard" - We all know that's not true; that definition is just poor... – BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft Feb 17 '13 at 21:47
  • 3
    This definition (from Wikipedia) says it grows on the chin, lip, cheeks, AND neck. I believe that means simultaneously, especially given their first image of it. xD – Killua Feb 17 '13 at 23:26
2

When the manga was being fan-translated, the translator left a note about how the name in japanese could be translated as white mustache or white beard. His words went something like, "Who wants to be White Mustach when you can be White Beard."

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