Mermaid Day is annually observed on March 29. It is for fans of the legendary creature that has appeared for centuries in literature, mythology, music, film, and popular culture. Today is the day to indulge one’s imagination and fascination with this aquatic creature. Do they actually exist, or is this a work of fiction? Regardless of the answer, the ocean’s depths are filled with unfathomable mysteries; it is merely the great unknown. Now is the time to learn about their ancient origins, history, and global cultural significance.
HISTORY OF MERMAID DAY
Mermaids first appeared in human culture in Assyria, now known as Syria, in the year 1000 B.C. In their mythology, the fertility deity Atargatis turned into a mermaid when she threw herself into a lake to escape the grief and shame of murdering her lover. Mythology describes how Atargatis was so beautiful that she was unable to completely transform into a fish; rather, she retained her feminine form and beauty above the waist, but her legs were entirely transformed into a fishtail. The Greek Mythology then elaborates on the Assyrian Myth, which included tales of sea goddesses known as Nereids and mermen known as Tritons. The original Assyrian description of mermaids was manifested in the Greek Sirens, but they were revised to have bird-like wings instead of a fish’s tail. The Romans, however, trace the origin of mermaids to Assyrian mythology by retaining their original description: beautiful, faerie-like women with fish tails. This became the accepted definition of mermaids up until the present day.
Several historians have reported sightings of real mermaids in the ocean, despite the fact that mermaids are uniformly acknowledged to be a product of mythology. Christopher Columbus is said to have witnessed three mermaids. However, he asserted that they were not as magnificent as they were described in the myths. Other accounts include those of English pirate Edward Teach (also known as Blackbeard).
The concept of mermaids has completely permeated popular culture throughout the world in modern times. From Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale “The Little Mermaid” to its frequent appearances in films and television, mermaids are a product of human inquiry and fascination with the unknown.
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MERMAID DAY ACTIVITIES
Host gatherings with mermaid themes
Mermaid-themed celebrations are ideal for children and adults alike. This event is ideal for young girls who want to dress as Ariel from “The Little Mermaid,” replete with red hair and a fishtail, with the film playing in the background on repeat.
Read your favourite mermaid literature.
If you are a bibliophile who is also interested in mermaids, there is no better way to observe this holiday than by burying your snout in a book. From Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid” to Greek and Roman Mythologies and innumerable works of popular fiction, today is the perfect time to expand your imagination through the written word.
A day spent at the seashore
Although you are not Ariel, there is no damage in pretending to be her for a day. Grab your mermaid-themed swimwear, hit the shoreline, snap a tonne of photos, and share them on social media with the hashtag #MermaidDay.
5 INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT MERMAIDS
There are four types of mermaids.
In literary history, there were four types of mermaids: traditional, selkies, shape-shifters, and merfolk.
The legend of mermaid weeping
According to legend, mermaid tears transform into a gem called “aquamarine” that mariners use for healing and protection.
It is said that mermaids have beautiful vocals.
Mermaids are said to have exquisite singing voices, as depicted in “The Little Mermaid” (1989) by Disney.
The most prevalent variety of mermaid
The most prevalent form of mermaid depicted in stories is the Oceanid variety, which lives exclusively in the ocean.
The mermaid is Starbucks’ most recognisable logo.
According to Starbucks’ creative director Steve Murray, the mermaid is the company’s most recognisable symbol, second only to its employees.
MERMAID DAY DATES