Posted by: Loren Coleman on November 21st, 2010
John William Waterhouse’s famed Mermaid (1900).
The Disneyization of the Mermaid took place decades later.
But in the 1800s, Mermaids and Mermen were Merbeings to be dealt with, as this old report demonstrates:
July 23, 1826
BERWICK [Northumberland] — . A “gentleman of veracity,” in passing along the east coast of [the Isle of] Bute, the other day, saw a mermaid, near Rothsay, and within one yard of the shore. The mermaid was “combing her fine black locks, with the utmost of deliberation, and apparently quite unconscious of the presence of more civilized beings!” Another large sea monster, “having a body resembling that of a man, but with the head of a brute,” was disporting himself in the vicinity; but, with greater modesty than the female, or a deeper sense of his unfitness to be so seen, “he disappeared” whenever the veracious gentleman and his companion “came in sight.”
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.