Posts Tagged ‘Mermaids’

coast

I recently (today actually) saw a message on Simon Savidge’s blog, Savidge Reads about Fairy Tales. It set me thinking. Last week I picked up a copy of THE FABLED COAST by Sophia Kingshill & Jennifer Westwood. Now this volume is not so much about “fairy tales” (although there are fairies in it) but covers the rich, astonishing local legends, customs and superstition around the coast of the British Isles.

It’s a fabulous book which I really can’t praise too highly! Here you’ll find tales of wrecks, sea-serpents, pirates, sailors’ superstitions, ghost ships – and mermaids, of course, abound. In 1836 in Bude, North Cornwall, for example, a local lad pursued “the bootifullest merry-maid that eye could behold” but she saw him, dived off her rock and “grinned like a seal”. Which probably gives the game away.

It’s a beautifully produced book, entertaining and extensively referenced, covering all the lore from our wave-seething coasts. It’s arranged for ease of reference by geographical area, and comes complete with colour and black & white illustrations.

Highly recommended.