The Suffolk Merman

There is a curious tale attached to the village of Orford in Suffolk which took place during the reign of King Henry II (1154-1189). Orford Castle (a stronghold against the treacherous Hugh Bigod of Bungay) the strange polygonal keep was then under the care and management of Bartholemew de Glanville a local man, in the service of the crown. The event was actually documented in the “Chronicon Anglicanum” a history of England written by Ralph of Coggeshall a medieval chronicler some forty years after the occurence took place.

One day around 1204AD the local fishermen of Orford caught what they believed to be a merman in their nets. They were extremely surprised when they finally managed to get their catch aboard because there, in the bottom of their boat, was a man staring angrily back at them.
He was described as being naked, but with a hairy body, as having a long straggly beard with an excessively hairy chest. The fishermen took the creature to the castle where Bartholemew de Glanville imprisoned it in the dungeons.

read the rest here

Thanks again to Gavin for the mermaid lore.

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