Shanks of One Piece

Red-Haired Shanks is originally from the Westblue and is the captain of the Red Hair Pirates he founded. He is also one of the Four Emperors feared by the World Government.


Sketches of Shanks today

Shanks is a normal-sized man, now 39 years old, with deep red, longer hair. He owes his nickname to this relatively rare hair color. Across his left eye are three large, nearly vertical scars. He received these from Marshall D. Teach, aka Blackbeard, even before he ate his devil fruit. Although his whole body is covered with scars from adventures and duels with Dracule Mihawk “Hawkeye”, the one from Blackbeard is, according to his own statement, the only one that still hurts today. Less bad for him was the loss of his left arm, which he once sacrificed to save the life of the young Monkey D. Luffy.

He has also been sporting what is known as a Henriquatre beard for years. He usually wears a white shirt under a black cape, the top buttons of which are always undone, and about knee-length trousers with a green pattern. His summer outfit is rounded off by brown sandals. Attached to his right hip is the scabbard of his sword Gryphon.

A look that drives away sea kings

Also in his possession was what would later become Luffy’s trademark: the straw hat. Like Luffy, he wore it on his head at all times. Eventually, he lent the straw hat to Luffy because he placed enormous trust in him and made him a promise which stated that Luffy must return the straw hat at the next meeting once he became a famous pirate.

Since his first appearance, Shanks has undergone several physical changes, all of which can be seen on the Shanks’ Change page.


Like many other pirates, Shanks believes in a “new era” where only the best can survive. For this reason, he put complete faith in Luffy and lent him his beloved straw hat as a token of their friendship on the condition that one day, when Luffy became a great pirate, he would get it back. He recognized much of himself in the little boy and predicted a glorious future for him.

Even though Shanks is held in high regard, his friends are far more important to him than his own life. “Little things”, like a lost arm, are a risk according to him, without which you can’t fulfill any dreams or wishes. So it was no problem for him to return from the East Blue to the Grand Line with only one arm left. Other pirates, on the other hand, had to question how such a talented fighter could lose an arm.

Grizzly humiliates the captain…but the captain remains calm.

While Shanks is usually a very quiet and social person, this can change abruptly in certain situations. When Shanks and his gang visited Makino’s bar a few years ago and were humiliated by the mountain bandit Grizzly, he took it in stride, making him a coward in Luffy’s eyes. He later encountered Grizzly again, who tried to kill the rubber nipper. This time, however, he took action against the robbers, as he could never have forgiven himself if anything had happened to his friend.

Listen up, mountain bandits!
Whether you spill beer on me or spit on me..,
I can laugh about that.
But whatever your reason..,
…I will not let you..,
I won’t let you hurt my friend!
-Shanks to the mountain robbers.

His crew appreciates this as well, so they have great faith in their captain. However, even though he is ironclad in defending his friends, he is not averse to teasing those very friends. For example, it was he who gave Luffy a T-shirt with the inscription “Anchor” back in the day, because he couldn’t swim.

South Pole or North Pole?

Back when he was a cabin boy on Gol D. Roger’s ship, there were often arguments between him and his comrade, Buggy the Clown. The reasons for this were mostly banal questions, such as whether it was colder at the North Pole or the South Pole. Often Vice-Captain Silvers Rayleigh himself had to intervene when the squabblers disagreed.

Despite Shanks’ being a pirate and an emperor, he is not interested in unnecessary bloodshed. Thus, he stopped the summit battle in Marine Ford and threatened anyone who continued to join the battle, Marine or pirate, that he would be the enemy from then on. Basically, he seems to be able to let the natural battle between Navy, World Government, and Pirates rest if it serves a greater good. He even spoke to the Five Elders, the highest political authority in the world, to discuss a particular pirate.

One negative trait of Shanks is that he likes to drink sake beyond measure. Should there be a valid reason, Shanks is not averse to partying even in the face of all nausea. Having traveled the seas of the world, he knows exactly what good sake should taste like. His absolute favorite is the one from his homeland, which he brought back to Whitebeard as a gift.

Skills & Strength

Due to the great fighting prowess of his gang, which is always energetically at his side, he is known as one of the Four Emperors, who are considered the most dangerous and strongest pirates in the world. According to Brannew, his subordinates have all made a great name for themselves, making the Red-Haired Pirates the most balanced of the Emperor gangs in terms of bounty and considered invincible.

For no other reason, the World Government has watched its every move, so that it can always be aware of any potential clashes that might affect the balance of the Three Power. Despite the government’s gigantic force, Shanks is not afraid of it and risks a fight to visit Whitebeard. Through his presence and influence, he was able to persuade the then Grand Admiral Sengoku to end the war, and no one dared contradict Shanks. His influence even goes so far that he was able to enter Pangaea Castle in Mary Geoise unhindered and was heard by the Five Elders.

The Incredible Aura

Furthermore, Shanks managed to drive away the giant stinkfish just by his presence and a fearsome look twelve years ago. Presumably, his overpowering aura is based on a pronounced haki, which was also felt by the commanders of the Whitebeard gang when he arrived on the Moby Dick. There, members of Whitebeard’s gang keeled over in rows when Shanks approached them.

If you’re not prepared,
it’s impossible to remain conscious
it’s impossible to remain conscious!
-Commander of the 3rd Division Jozu on Shanks.
In battle with Whitebeard, even the sky splits.

Thanks to his years of experience, he knows what dangers lurk on the seas of the world. Thus, he also advised Whitebeard to stop the glorious commander of the 2nd Division Portgas D. Ace before he meets Blackbeard, since Shanks himself would know exactly how powerful Teach is. Eventually, it turns out that Shanks was correct in his guess, as Ace was indeed defeated by his former comrade and turned over to the Navy, who locked him up in the Impel Down.

Should it come to a fight, the Emperor can rely on his sword called Gryphon, which he always carries with him. Whether this has any special rank is unknown. However, it can be assumed that it is a very good sword, as he was able to parry an attack from Whitebeard’s Naginata with it, after which the sky split.

The fact that he was able to compete with the strongest pirate in the world to date, Whitebeard, naturally indicates enormous strength.


Cabin boy in gold Roger’s crew

Shanks Surprises Buggy

As early as 30 years ago, at the age of nine, Shanks was a cabin boy with Buggy on the ship Gol D. Rogers. There, they spent most of their time doing menial tasks like scrubbing the deck. When Roger left for his final voyage 28 years ago, due to his terminal illness, they continued to be part of the Roger pirate gang. Despite numerous quarrels, they always remained good friends until the clown found a devil fruit along with a treasure map during a raid on an unknown ship and secretly wanted to sell it.

Shanks wanted to deliver a message from the captain to Buggy, who tried to hide the fruit in his mouth from him. In doing so, Buggy became so frightened that he swallowed the devil’s fruit and dropped his just-found treasure map into the sea. He immediately jumped after it, but was unable to swim due to the curse of the sea. Though he was rescued by the redhead, he saw all his dreams of great treasure shattered as he could no longer dive for them.

About a year after setting out on their final voyage, the Roger pirates encountered Shiki’s fleet at At War, and after a battle of words between the captains, a sea battle ensued, ending in a draw.

The apprentices meet

Then, 26 years ago, the Roger pirates and the Whitebeard pirates happened to face each other on an uncharted island. While the captains fought, the two pirate gangs also faced off and the three-day battle ended in a truce and an exchange of booty. Shanks and Buggy caught sight of the apprentices on the Moby Dick: Blackbeard, Jozu, and Marco. The former in particular piqued their interest. Afterwards, Roger Kozuki was able to convince Oden, a member of Whitebeard, to accompany him on his final voyage, and the pirate gangs parted ways. They quickly befriended him and, in order to learn the way to Laugh Tale, traveled the world together. However, when they finally deciphered the course to Laugh Tale, Buggy fell ill and Shanks stayed by his side, preventing them from reaching the final island. After reaching the last island, however, the rest of the Roger pirates returned and took the two back aboard. However, the Roger pirate gang was disbanded shortly after by the captain, who was the first to leave the ship. As a result, they took the samurai Oden back to Wano Country.

It’s hard to say goodbye

Then, a year after the gang broke up, Gol D. Roger allowed himself to be arrested by the Navy and was executed in Loguetown. Shanks was present at the time and later offered his former friend and comrade Buggy a place in his newly formed gang, but the latter angrily refused and announced that he would rather form a gang of his own than serve under Shanks. Both went their separate ways with their own gangs from then on.

Yasopp is hired

Shanks takes on Yasopp

At an unknown time, Shanks met his future commander Yasopp in Syrop, whom he hired for his new pirate band. For life as a pirate in Shanks’ crew, Yasopp even left behind his wife Banchina and his only son Usopp.

Legendary duels with Hawkeye

Sometime during the time period from Roger’s death to his first meeting with Luffy, Shanks engaged in fierce battles with the world’s greatest swordsman and samurai of the seas Dracule Mihawk Hawkeye. These fights remain legendary to this day. Since Shanks lost his arm, they don’t seem to have had a fight, though he would have been willing to do it one-armed. Hawkeye didn’t find a “duel with a cripple” particularly exciting, however, and so declined when Shanks asked a question about it when they met on an island.

Hero in Foosha Village

Shanks laughs at his humiliation at the hands of Grizzly.

Thirteen years ago, Shanks’ band of pirates dropped anchor at the island where the idyllic Foosha Village was located. Here he quickly befriended the village boy, Monkey D. Luffy, who immediately reminded him of his late Captain Gol D. Roger. He spent almost a year on the island with his gang. They would have parties, go on round trips, or tease Luffy. Again and again he tried to convince Shanks that he was ready for the sea, but was always rejected. He even went so far as to inflict a wound under his left eye himself with a knife, which Shanks didn’t like at all.

One day, the gang brought a chest with a devil fruit in it to Makino’s bar, which Luffy ate illicitly in revenge. Shocked, Shanks tried to get the “anchor”, as he also called Luffy, to spit out the fruit he had just eaten. To his horror, however, he found that it was already too late – Luffy had already become a rubber man and had to resign himself to never being able to swim.

That same day, in addition to the pirates, some mountain robbers found themselves in the bar demanding beer, which was out of stock as the pirates were drinking the last of it. Friendly, Shanks offered the leader Grizzly his bottle, but he smashed it with his sword, spilling it into the redhead’s face and over his body. After once again reaffirming with a pinning that they were the bosses in the village, Grizzly and his men departed and Shanks calmly began to clean up the mess that had been made. Luffy didn’t understand why Shanks had allowed himself to be so humiliated, and was deeply disappointed in his idol.

He sacrifices his arm for Luffy

Later, just as the pirates were on their way, the mountain pirates revisited Makino’s bar, where they were berated and challenged to a fight by an angry Luffy. Makino brought in Mayor Woop Slapp to assist in freeing Luffy from Grizzly’s clutches, to whom he was outmatched without a chance, but even a ransom promised by Woop Slapp was not enough to appease the mountain bandit.

At that very moment, Shanks showed up with his crew and informed the bandits that he would not forgive them if they harmed Luffy. One of the bandits pointed a pistol at Shanks’ head, whereupon he warned the bandit of the danger involved. Before he could fire a shot, he went down in his head by a bullet from Officer Lucky Roux, who suddenly appeared beside Shanks. Now Benn Beckman, the vice of the pirate gang, took over and disabled the rest of the raiders; with the exception of Grizzly, who escaped by firing a smoke bomb and fled to the open sea, where he planned to throw Luffy into the water.

Shanks gives Luffy his beloved straw hat

Before he could put his plan into action, however, he and most of his boat were engulfed by the attacking stinkfish. Luffy struggled helplessly for his life in the water until suddenly Shanks appeared and saved him from another attack by the sea monster, though he lost his left arm in the process. He held Luffy tight and scared the monster away with a fearful look. He reassured Luffy, who was completely distraught due to his sacrifice, that he had only lost an arm and not his life.

In the evening Shanks prepared to leave and said goodbye to little Luffy, giving him his straw hat as a parting gift and telling him that he would like the hat back when he became a famous pirate. So Shanks and his gang sailed away, certain that there would soon be competition – as there was ten years later.

Meeting Silvers Rayleigh

Twelve years ago, Shanks met Silvers Rayleigh and told him about a boy who spoke the same words as his former captain. What he was referring to was Luffy.

Rise to Emperor

Six years ago, at the age of 33, Shanks was named one of the Four Emperors, due to his strength and fame.

Meeting with Ace

Ace and Shanks have a conversation

At an unknown time, Shanks received a visit from the then captain of the Spade pirate gang, Ace. The latter wanted to thank him for saving his little brother Luffy’s life. Shanks was delighted to meet Luffy’s brother and immediately had a party thrown for Ace.


Celebration with Hawkeye

Old “friends” drinking

The first time the aging Shanks was seen was when Hawkeye came looking for him on a jungle island. At the time, he and his gang were recovering from a party that had taken place shortly before. Shanks’ first suspicion that Hawkeye might demand a fight was dismissed by the latter with the remark that he only wanted to talk to him. Much pleased, Shanks marveled at the first poster of the boy he had rescued that day. Mihawk told his former rival of his encounter with the Straw Hat Pirates, and that he had nothing bad to say about these interesting pirates. In the end, the redhead invited the swordsman for a round of sake, even though he had been quite nauseous before.

Message to Whitebeard

While Luffy and company were planning their trip to Skypiea, Shanks sent his apprentice Rockstar to Whitebeard to deliver a message regarding Portgas D. Ace. The rookie in the redcoat gang was considered an unknown rookie despite his already considerable bounty of 94,000,000 on the Moby Dick. Whitebeard angrily tore up the letter and asked Rockstar since when Shanks was such a big shot that he dared send the most powerful pirate in the world a letter instead of showing up in person when he wanted something. Outraged, Rockstar reported the progress of his visit to his captain via Den-den Mushi, who immediately called for departure from Winter Island, where his gang had just set up camp. Of course, the World Government heard about it and feared for the balance of the Three Powers.

Meeting with Whitebeard

The emperors cross blades

While the Straw Hats celebrated their victory over the CP9 in Water 7, Shanks and Whitebeard met up on the Moby Dick. As soon as the redhead boarded the ship, Marco and Jozu noticed that he was determined to do anything, as usual. His haki, which he partially released, caused several weaker crew members to faint.

After their gangs had retreated to the Red Force and Shanks had poured a wine from his homeland, Whitebeard and Shanks began to talk about old times, Blackbeard, and Ace’s mission. Several times the redhead tried to convince Whitebeard of Blackbeard’s danger and Ace’s slim chance of defeating him. But the latter only laughed, finding it amusing that Shanks had finally learned to talk like a man, since they had both known each other since Gold Roger’s time.

Angered by the younger man’s further attempts at instruction, Whitebeard took up a weapon. Shanks, too, drew his sword and the emperors’ blades crossed. The resulting blast even split the sky. The further course of the fight is not known.

The Battle of Marine Ford

The Emperor vs. the Admiral

In the midst of Whitebeard’s preparation to save his 2nd officer Ace from execution in Marine Ford, the pirate Kaidou, himself one of the Four Emperors, planned to attack the strongest pirate in the world, but Shanks stood in his way. The course of the ensuing battle is still unknown.

However, after both Ace and Whitebeard were killed in the battle for Marine Ford, and Jinbe and Luffy were also put in harm’s way by Akainu, Koby bravely stood in the admiral’s way to end the needless bloodshed. As the latter was about to kill him for his treachery, Shanks suddenly appeared and confronted the admiral. With his sword, he was able to stop Akainu despite his Logia power. After an exchange of words with the head of the navy, Sengoku, the battle was finally ended by Marine Ford.

Shanks came to end the battle
Well done… young soldier…
The “seconds of bravery” you created at the risk of your life… for better or for worse….
Changed the fate of the world at that moment!!!
-Marine Ford, Shanks to Koby.

After the war, Shanks took the bodies of Ace and Whitebeard to give them a proper burial.

With the Whitebeard gang and other pirates present, the two pirates were buried on an island in the New World.

From the decks of the world

After the events on Dress Rosa, Shanks and his band of pirates were present at the ruins of a certain island and attended a wedding there. It was here that Shanks read in the newspaper about the new bounties of the Straw Hat Pirates.

The Levely in Mary Geoise

After the events in Totto Land, while the Levely participants were on their way to Mary Geoise, Shanks read the newspaper report about Luffy and his appointment as the unofficial 5th Emperor. He mentioned that they would probably meet soon.

As the participants of the Levely then gradually trickled into Mary Geoise, Shanks was also present, who could be seen in the room of the authorities of the Five Elders as he presented them with the request that he would like to talk about a certain pirate.


Shanks on the cover ofJump Giga cover
  • His favorite foods are kimchi bokkeum bap and lobster.
  • He does not, however, like blueberries.
  • His hobby is vagabonding.
  • If he were an animal, he would represent a lion.
  • On the occasion of One Piece Film Red, Shanks was featured on the cover of Jump Giga, “Summer 2022” issue.

Romance Dawn

Shanks in Romance Dawn
  • Shanks has been an integral part of the story since long before One Piece began.

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