One Piece: Is Blackbeard the son of Rocks D. Xebec? Theory explored

Rocks D. Xebec and Marshall D. Teach (Image via Toei Animation)
Rocks D. Xebec and Marshall D. Teach (Image via Toei Animation)

Since his first appearance in Jaya, Marshall D. Teach “Blackbeard” has played an increasingly important role in One Piece, establishing himself as one of the franchise’s most prominent villains. However, with the story now entering its final saga, Blackbeard’s background remains unknown, which is quite odd, considering his character’s relevance.

Most likely, that's because Blackbeard's origins are of utmost importance for the plot, and thus will be revealed only in due time. In this regard, the connection that links Blackbeard with the fearsome Rocks D. Xebec is particularly intriguing.

A man that the World Government feared to the point of erasing every trace of his existence from history, Xebec was so powerful that Gol D. Roger and Monkey D. Garp couldn’t beat him, if not by tag teaming. Blackbeard has been depicted as a metaphorical second coming of Xebec, and things get even more interesting as he might even be the latter's son.

Disclaimer: This article contains major spoilers from the One Piece manga up to chapter 1108.


Teach's connection with Xebec is among One Piece's greatest mysteries

The evident parallels between Blackbeard and Xebec in One Piece

Rocks D. Xebec as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Rocks D. Xebec as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)

Currently, Blackbeard is 40 years old. This means that he was a 2-year-old child at the time of the God Valley Incident, during which Xebec lost his life. Notably, this event took place 38 years before One Piece's present narration.

When Xebec was alive, Teach was too young to have been a part of his crew. Given their evident connection, the easiest speculation is that the pirate now known as Blackbeard might be the son of the formidable Xebec.

When One Piece author Eiichiro Oda drew Blackbeard’s appearance as a child, he portrayed him as a lonely and miserable kid. This would be in line with the idea that Teach is the orphaned son of Xebec, who died when the former was only two years old. Admittedly, the timeline fits pretty well.

Marshall D. Teach "Blackbeard" as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Marshall D. Teach "Blackbeard" as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)

So far, Xebec has only been shown as a silhouette. His full physical aspect has yet to be disclosed, but his ominous grin appears to be the same as Blackbeard's. This is, indeed, food for thought. However, it’s also true that a silhouette doesn’t prove much, and could very well be a red herring on Oda’s part.

A much more relevant clue of the narrative connection between Teach and Xebec is the fact that the former named his ship “Saber of Xebec". This can hardly be a coincidence, as Xebec’s full name, i.e., Rocks D. Xebec, is unknown to most, presumably Teach as well.

Most people only heard of Rocks D. Xebec as Rocks, the captain of the homonymous group of pirates. That’s because the World Government erased every piece of information about the former from history, meaning that his full name isn’t common knowledge in the One Piece world.

Only people directly related to Rocks, like his former crewmates, as well as Garp, Sengoku, and the Roger Pirates, knew that he was called Rocks D. Xebec. The rest of the world has no way of knowing that, and that’s especially true for Blackbeard, who was a young child when Xebec died.

And yet, not only does Blackbeard know the name of Xebec, but he even respects it enough to name his ship after it. Of course, if Blackbeard were a direct descendant of Xebec, both things would be easily explained.

This would also make the name of Blackbeard’s ship a reference to the fact that he inherited Xebec’s ambition and aims to fulfill it, thus becoming, metaphorically speaking, the latter’s weapon. A saber is, indeed, a sword typically used by the 16th and 17th centuries pirates by which Blackbeard seems to have been inspired.

Hachinosu as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Hachinosu as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)

Another evident link between Blackbeard and Xebec is the fact that both used the island of Fullalead (also known as Beehive in other translations, and called Hachinosu in the original Japanese) as their base.

Xebec first assembled his crew on Fullalead and used the place as his base of operations from then onwards. After Xebec’s death and the disbandment of the Rocks Pirates, Fullalead was seized by Ochoku. However, Blackbeard eventually overthrew him and made the island his property.

Blackbeard was particularly interested in becoming the new ruler of Fullalead. This may have been because he wanted to carry on Xebec’s legacy, as he seems to have done with his crew. While the Straw Hat Pirates and many other crews are formed by tight-knit friends, connected by their shared bonds, the Rocks Pirates and the Blackbeard Pirates are very different.

Some of the Rocks Pirates as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Some of the Rocks Pirates as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)

These two crews are bands of outlaws held together by mutual interests. Their lack of camaraderie is significantly emphasized in the story, as the Rocks Pirates immediately dissolved after Xebec’s demise in the God Valley Incident.

Likewise, the newly recruited members of the Blackbeard Pirates claimed that they would leave the group if Teach failed to steal Whitebeard’s Quake-Quake Fruit.

The Blackbeard Pirates facing Whitebeard as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)
The Blackbeard Pirates facing Whitebeard as seen in the One Piece anime (Image via Toei Animation)

It was stated that Xebec’s goal was to become the “King of the World”. In his quest to achieve this, he was remorseless, ready to attack anyone indiscriminately and crush whoever tried to stop him.

Blackbeard showed the same attitude, betraying and killing his crewmates without a second thought. Moreover, One Piece chapter 1107 revealed that Blackbeard aims to seize the world, just like Xebec once tried to do.

Both Blackbeard and Xebec are among the very few characters with the fateful D. initial in their names. They also stand out in stark contrast to the other members of the D. Clan. Most of the people marked by the Will of D. are good-hearted individuals, while these two distinguish themselves for their malicious lust for power.


Marshall D. Teach, the son of Rocks D. Xebec

The God Valley Incident is among the most important events in One Piece (Image via Toei Animation)
The God Valley Incident is among the most important events in One Piece (Image via Toei Animation)

When Gol D. Roger surrendered himself, the World Government, aiming to exterminate the lineage of the infamous Pirate King, began hunting all pregnant women within a certain area. Roger’s lover, Rouge, was forced to change the name of their son, Gol D. Ace, into Portgas D. Ace, in an attempt to protect him from the manhunt.

Given how much the World Government despised and feared Xebec, it’s quite possible that something similar happened when the latter died in God Valley. Going by this assumption, Xebec had a 2-year-old son with a certain woman, and this little child was the person now known as Marshall D. Teach.

Teach’s surname, Marshall D., would thus derive from his mother, who changed the baby’s original surname to conceal his identity; otherwise, it would have been Rocks D. Teach. As things stand, this remains a conjecture, but it is certainly an intriguing one.

The fact that Teach became a prominent member of the Whitebeard Pirates at a very young age is also quite compelling. Perhaps, Teach was accepted into the crew because he told Whitebeard that he was the son of the latter’s previous captain, Rocks D. Xebec. A very honorable man, Whitebeard may have felt remorse for abandoning his captain.

As if to make amends for his past carelessness, he happily welcomed the son of his former captain aboard. This seems all the more logical as Blackbeard was an orphan. Whitebeard wanted to become a father figure for anyone looking for a family, and he might also have felt that, if Teach was orphaned, it was his fault.


An even more shocking explanation for Teach and Xebec's link

While it’s pretty clear that Blackbeard somehow inherited Xebec’s will, in One Piece the person who inherits someone’s will is often not a biological descendant. For example, Roger’s will wasn’t inherited by Ace, his son, but by Luffy, a person to whom he has no blood relation.

Taking that into account, Blackbeard might be obsessed with Xebec not because he is his son, but because he is Rocks himself. The idea is that, when Xebec was on the verge of death in God Valley, he used a certain Devil Fruit power to transfer his soul into another body, possessing it.

Teach is the only One Piece character who can own two Devil Fruits (Image via Toei Animation)
Teach is the only One Piece character who can own two Devil Fruits (Image via Toei Animation)

Many slaves and other innocent people were in God Valley during the incident, due to the “human hunting tournament” that the Celestial Dragons had arranged. At the time, Blackbeard was a little child, and it's entirely possible that he was among these ill-fated people. As he was wandering around, having lost his parents in the carnage, a dying Xebec seized his body.

Teach being Xebec would explain why he respects the latter, knows his full name, and behaves much like him. It would also account for Teach’s inability to sleep, multiple conflicting personalities, and weird body. According to Marco, an expert medician and Blackbeard’s former crewmate, the latter’s body is unique, different from anyone else, which allows him to wield two Devil Fruits at once.

Luffy, Zoro, and Nami hearing Teach's words in One Piece episode 147 (Image via Toei Animation)
Luffy, Zoro, and Nami hearing Teach's words in One Piece episode 147 (Image via Toei Animation)

Everything would be easily explained if Teach had two entities inside of him, his original soul and that of Rocks D. Xebec. Then again, this would also tie in with the unforgettable scene featured shortly after Teach’s introduction in the story, in which he uttered those words wholeheartedly:

“People’s dreams… don’t ever end! Ain’t that right!? Let them laugh! If you’re aiming for the top… you don’t always need your fists to show your might!”

His speech left Luffy, Zoro, and Nami dumbfounded for a moment. As Teach walked away, Nami wondered who he was, but Luffy and Zoro corrected her in a quite cryptic manner:

“It’s not just one guy… there’s more than one.”

Depending on the translation, Luffy and Zoro’s words were also transposed as:

“It’s not he… it’s they.”
The iconic scene of One Piece in which Luffy and Zoro talk about Teach (Image via Toei Animation)
The iconic scene of One Piece in which Luffy and Zoro talk about Teach (Image via Toei Animation)

Confused, Nami asked Luffy and Zoro what they meant with that, but they didn’t answer her. Maybe, the captain and second-in-command of the Straw Hat Pirates perceived that Blackbeard wasn’t just Blackbeard. Unfortunately, no further information has been given so far, leaving the interpretation of this scene open to debate.

Until the day when One Piece author Eiichiro Oda reveals the truth, all the theories regarding Blackbeard and Xebec’s connection remain equally viable and fascinating. One thing is for sure, the mangaka didn’t leave all those clues by accident, but to build up something big that will directly influence the story and its fictional world.


Keep up with all One Piece anime, manga, and live-action news as 2024 progresses.

Quick Links

Edited by Babylona Bora
App download animated image Get the free App now