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  Columnist: Paul Dale Roberts

Image credit: J.W.Waterhouse

The mermaid of Cornwall

Posted on Friday, 26 March, 2010 | 19 comments
Columnist: Paul Dale Roberts

Today, I received an unusual phone call. Here is how it went down.

X-Files Ringtone.

Paul: This is Paul.

Bill: Hi mate, my name is Bill Watts, I live in Cornwall, England.

Paul: How can I assist you Bill?

Bill: Along the beach the other day, I came upon a gorgeous woman sitting on a rock. She had long flowing reddish hair, very white skin. She looked at me and jumped back into the water and that is when I noticed that half of her body was of a fish! It was a real bugger that she jumped in.

Paul: You are saying she was a mermaid?

Bill: As true as I sit on my arse talking with you.

Paul: What day and time was this and exactly where (phone disconnects).

Bill didn't call back. The day I received this call was on March 19, 2010, Friday, I was in Border's Books when the call came in.

I can only wonder if Bill saw some other kind of creature and mistook the creature for a mermaid? Was Bill perhaps under the influence of some good Guinness Beer? Most mermaid sightings are in the North Atlantic. Some cryptozoologists theorize that people are mistaking the manatee or dugongs for mermaids. There is a problem with that theory. Dugongs are seen in the Indian Ocean, not the North Atlantic and Manatees are seen in the Gulf of Mexico, far away from the North Atlantic.

So what exactly did Bill see? Past history of mermaid sightings go as far back as 558 AD Ireland. A mermaid was drawn ashore by a fisherman’s net. The mermaid was baptized by the townsfolk and soon afterward she died. She was later honored as a holy virgin and miracles were recorded at her shrine. This occurred at Teo-da-Beoc. Sightings of mermaids have been frequent from the Renaissance period to modern times.

October 29, 1811, John McIsaac saw a mermaid at Campbeltown, Scotland. With his sworn testimony, he claimed the mermaid had long flowing red hair, white skin and dove back into the water. Henry Hudson on June 15, 1608 claimed he saw a mermaid with flowing black hair, skin was white and it swam on the ship’s bow side in the North Atlantic. Hudson and one other witness saw the mermaid. It is said that when mermaids sing, they are predicting an upcoming storm. It is also rumored that mermaids can bring on storms. Stories tell if you try and harm a mermaid, the mermaid will bring on a fatal storm of great proportions.

When I went to Germany, I took a luxury cruise down the Rhine River and saw the rock that the infamous and legendary Lorelei sat on, she was a siren that would lure ship captains to the rock, where they would crash their ships. Some people think that the Lorelei was a mermaid.

How can people misidentify a seal or a walrus with a mermaid? They usually describe the mermaid as having long flowing hair, white skin, women’s breasts and the bottom of a fish. Are all these people making up stories? Or are they really seeing mermaids perhaps from another watery dimension, that ever so often they pop into our reality? Bill, if you are out there reading this, give me a call back and let’s finish your story.

Article Copyright© Paul Dale Roberts - reproduced with permission.

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