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Half a century ago, Belgian Zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans first codified cryptozoology in his book On the Track of Unknown Animals.

The Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ) are still on the track, and have been since 1992. But as if chasing unknown animals wasn't enough, we are involved in education, conservation, and good old-fashioned natural history! We already have three journals, the largest cryptozoological publishing house in the world, CFZtv, and the largest cryptozoological conference in the English-speaking world, but in January 2009 someone suggested that we started a daily online magazine! The CFZ bloggo is a collaborative effort by a coalition of members, friends, and supporters of the CFZ, and covers all the subjects with which we deal, with a smattering of music, high strangeness and surreal humour to make up the mix.

It is edited by CFZ Director Jon Downes, and subbed by the lovely Lizzy Bitakara'mire (formerly Clancy), scourge of improper syntax. The daily newsblog is edited by Corinna Downes, head administratrix of the CFZ, and the indexing is done by Lee Canty and Kathy Imbriani. There is regular news from the CFZ Mystery Cat study group, and regular fortean bird news from 'The Watcher of the Skies'. Regular bloggers include Dr Karl Shuker, Dale Drinnon, Richard Muirhead and Richard Freeman.The CFZ bloggo is updated daily, and there's nothing quite like it anywhere else. Come and join us...

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Sunday, August 05, 2018

MUIRHEAD`S MYSTERIES: Some strange aquatic creature stories from Dorset and beyond.

I almost called this blog "Some strange mermaid stories from Dorset" but some of these accounts may be of dugong or manatees though what a manatee may be doing on the coast of Dorset is probably unanswerable.

All these stories can be found in Dorset Customs ,Curiosities and Countryside by Mary Brown (1990)

" A  mermaid captured in Greece in 1775 was said to be very beautiful with blue eyes and white teeth with fish-like gills for ears. She had a beautiful "membrane" running from her temples like a headdress instead of the usual long golden hair. She had female breasts  but no nipples, and no nails on her fingers. From the waist down she was like a cod-fish with three sets of fins. She was only three feet long including her tail, and was said to have an enchanting voice. It is not surprising to learn that this example too,was believed to be a fraud.(1)

Cornwall ,as one would expect, is rich in mermaid stories. The most famous one concerns the `Mermaid of Zennor` who, disguised as a beautiful woman used to regularly attend services in the church . All the congregation were agog at her marvellous singing voice. Finally she tempted away the best tenor in the choir, who was never seen again. A representation of her was carved on an ancient bench end, now made into a chair, in Zennor church. Dorset`s most famous mermaid does not compare to her in beauty. Hutchins described her with what Treves calls `scientific solemnity`. She was thrown ashore at Burton Bradstock in June 1757,and Hutchins says...

"...This romantic individual, being no less than 13 feet in height or length, was evidently a giant of the species. Her upper or better half had a human form, while her extremity was that of a fish. The head of this unhappy creature was partly like that of a man and partly like that of a hog. Her fins resembled hands. She had a masculine jaw-bone and 48 teeth in both the upper and the lower jaw." (2)

1. Dorset Customs,Curiosities and Country-Lore Mary Brown (1990) p.65
2. Ibid p.65

THE HOPPING HEN'S HIGH HOPES

The Gonzo Daily: Sunday
 
YER EDITOR SEZ:
 
Still no news, but much gratitude to all the people who keep asking for some, who are sending us so much love. I will let you know as soon as we know something concrete, but Corinna has asked me that whilst we are still in the world of speculation, not to make any of that speculation public. I am sure that you will understand that.
 
I will be doing little bits and bobs here and there. The blogs and some issues of the magazines for example, and OTT. Most of you have been very kind and sensitive, but I have to ask that until this is resolved one way or another, please don't write to me complaining about stuff, or asking me to do things. Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible, but in the meantime I need to prioritise and I need to be left to process this all, as best as I can
 
love
 
jon
 
ALL TODAY'S GONZO NEWS WOT'S FIT TO PRINT:
 
FAIRPORT CONVENTION AT SIDMOUTH FOLK FESTIVAL
WONDROUS STORIES FROM YES
MARTIN STEPHENSON IN THE NEWS
THOM THE WORLD POET: The Daily Poem
THE GONZO TRACK OF THE DAY:  Healing Chant
 
OTHER IMPORTANT STUFF FROM THE GONZOVERSE:
 
For those of you who are interested in such things, the Gonzo Privacy Policy is here:
 
And the CFZ Privacy Policy is here:
And, yes,
 
CHECK OUT THE GONZO STORES:
 
UK
US
 
AND OTHER STUFF FEATURING VARIOUS GONZO CONTRIBUTORS:
 
Our webTV show:
 
And if you fancy supporting it on Patreon:
 
And by the way chaps and chappesses, a trip to the Jon Downes megastore may seem to be in order:
 
AND THE LATEST ISSUE OF THE GONZO MAGAZINE:
 
Gonzo Weekly #297
THE REMEMBER WILKO ISSUE
 
In this strange and rather poignant issue, Richard Stellar discovers the incomparable Shir Ordo, Jon talks about Roger Daltrey and Wilko Johnson, Corinna has been in hospital, Alan revisits the The Grunwick dispute and strike action and associated street art, Phil goes to see Roger Waters, John goes to see Canned Heat, Graham looks at what we know about the forthcoming Hawkwind album, and Jon writes about Evelyn Waugh. REDEFINING ECLECTIC eh?
 
#Hail Eris!
 
And there are radio shows from Strange Fruit, Mack Maloney, AND Friday Night Progressive, AND there are columns from all sorts of folk including Kev Rowlands, Neil Nixon, C J Stone, but the irrepressible Corinna, Mr Biffo and Roy Weard are on hiatus.  There is also a collection of more news, reviews, views, interviews and red kangaroos who've lost their shoes (OK, nothing to do with the largest extant macropods who are in a quandry with regards their footwear, but I got carried away with things that rhymed with OOOOS) than you can shake a stick at. And the best part is IT's ABSOLUTELY FREE!!!
 
This issue features:
 
Roger Daltrey, Nick Cave, Wilko Johnson, Shir Ordo, paul McCartney, Led Zeppelin, Morrissey, Yoko Ono, David Bowie, Billy Gibbons, Z Z Top, Patrick Williams, Lucy Ferry, June Jacobs, Elbert Howard, Rick Wakeman, Michael Bruce, Natural Gas, Roger Waters, Canned Heat, UPF, Universe Infinity, Unruly Child, Vantomime, Vespero, Zero for Conduct, Abjection Ritual, Aborted Fetus, C J Stone, Hawkwind, Evelyn Waugh, The George Garabedian Players and the Awful Trumpet of Harry Arms.
 
And the last few issues are:
 
Issue 295-6 (Robert Berry)
Issue 294 (Bow Wow Wow)
Issue 293 (Stonehenge)
Issue 292 (Rolling Stones)
Issue 291 (Alien Weaponry)
Issue 290 (Frank Zappa)
Issue 289 (Misty in Roots)
Issue 288 (Paula Frazer)
Issue 287 (Boss Goodman)
Issue 286 (Monty Python)
Issue 285 (ELP)
Issue 284 (Straqngelove)
Issue 283 (Record Store Day)
Issue 282 (Neil Finn and Fleetwood Mac)
Issue 281 (Carl Palmer)
Issue 280 (Steve Andrews)
 
All issues from #70 can be downloaded at www.gonzoweekly.com if you prefer. If you have problems downloading, just email me and I will add you to the Gonzo Weekly dropbox. The first 69 issues are archived there as well. Information is power chaps, we have to share it!
 
You can download the magazine in pdf form HERE:
 
SPECIAL NOTICE: If you, too, want to unleash the power of your inner rock journalist, and want to join a rapidly growing band of likewise minded weirdos please email me at jon@eclipse.co.uk The more the merrier really.
 
 
* The Gonzo Daily is a two way process. If you have any news or want to write for us, please contact me at jon@eclipse.co.uk. If you are an artist and want to showcase your work, or even just say hello please write to me at gonzo@cfz.org.uk. Please copy, paste and spread the word about this magazine as widely as possible. We need people to read us in order to grow, and as soon as it is viable we shall be invading more traditional magaziney areas. Join in the fun, spread the word, and maybe if we all chant loud enough we CAN stop it raining. See you tomorrow...
 
* The Gonzo Daily is - as the name implies - a daily online magazine (mostly) about artists connected to the Gonzo Multimedia group of companies. But it also has other stuff as and when the editor feels like it. The same team also do a weekly newsletter called - imaginatively - The Gonzo Weekly. Find out about it at this link: www.gonzo-multimedia.blogspot.co.uk
 
* We should probably mention here, that some of our posts are links to things we have found on the internet that we think are of interest. We are not responsible for spelling or factual errors in other people's websites. Honest guv!
 
* Jon Downes, the Editor of all these ventures (and several others) is an old hippy of 58 who - together with a Jack Russell called Archie, an infantile orange cat named after a song by Frank Zappa, and two half grown kittens, one totally coincidentally named after one of the Manson Family, purely because she squeaks, puts it all together from a converted potato shed in a tumbledown cottage deep in rural Devon which he shares with various fish. He is ably assisted by his lovely wife Corinna, his bulldog/boxer Prudence, his elderly mother-in-law, and a motley collection of social malcontents. Plus.. did we mention Archie and the Cats?

NEWS FROM NOWHERE: Sunday

ON THIS DAY IN -   1944 - Polish insurgents liberated a German labor camp in Warsaw. 348 Jewish prisoners were freed. 
And now some more recent news from the CFZ Newsdesk

  • Australia's 'Gloomy Octopus' Finds Warmth, Food, H...
  • Marijuana Farms Are Driving This Adorable Forest C...
  • More woodland management needed to help save dormi...

  • UK gardeners urged to build ponds as sightings of ...

  • AND TO WHISTLE WHILE YOU WORK... (Music that may have some relevance to items also on this page, or may just reflect my mood on the day)