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equator crossing ritual

Ceremony at sea

A pollywog is a person that has not crossed the equator on a ship.  Here a pollywog endures a shower of icewater during equator crossing ceremony on the Research Vessel Atlantis.  Participants navigate a gauntlet of royalty, such as the Royal Doctor, Royal Barber and Royal Dentist, who prepare them for an audience with King Neptune, Davy Jones and other members of the Royal Court.  If found worthy, pollywogs earn a certificate and the right to call themselves Royal Shellbacks. (Photo by Lance Wills, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)


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