Fairies, mermaids, dragons, are these mysterious creatures real?
In mythology, mermaids – or mermaid-like creatures – have been around for thousands of years.
The first mermaid myths may have originated around 1000 BC – the stories tell the story of a Syrian goddess who jumped into a lake to transform into a fish, but her great beauty could not be changed and only her lower half was transformed.
Since then, many other mermaid stories have appeared in the folklore of various cultures around the world. For example, the African water spirit Mami Wata is mermaid-shaped, as is the Lasirn water spirit, which is popular in Caribbean island folklore.
Throughout history, several explorers have reported sightings of mermaids, the most famous being Christopher Columbus.
Columbus claimed to have seen mermaids near Haiti in 1493, which he described as “not as beautiful as they are portrayed, for somehow on the face they look like men”, according to the American Museum of Natural History.
Captain John Smith is described in Edward Rowe Snow\’s “Incredible Mysteries and Legends of the Sea” (Dodd Mead, January 1967) as having seen a large-eyed, green-haired mermaid in 1614 off the coast of Newfoundland; apparently Smith felt “love” for her until he realized she was a fish from the waist down.