I know you can’t be expected to get through today without a Monsterous Fish story. The National Library of Wales obliges with A most strange and true report of a monsterous fish, who appeared in the forme of a woman, from her waste upwards by P.G.
The library explains:
This unique pamphlet tells the story of an alleged sighting of a mermaid near Pendine, Carmarthenshire in 1603. The creature was first seen by Thomas Raynold, a yeoman from Pendine, who then summoned others to keep watch for three hours. William Saunders of Pendine later examined Raynold and some of the other witnesses.
Stories of mermaids were fairly common during the fifteenth, sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and there is even reference to a sighting in the journal of Christopher Columbus (1451-1506) for 9th January 1493. It was believed that mermaids could save sailors from drowning but could also lure ships to their doom. Belief in mermaids, fairies and other mythical creatures persisted in many areas of Britain until the eighteenth century and sometimes even later. [continue]
Of course you’ll want to view the pamphlet.