Sirens vs. Mermaids

Sirens

  • In Greek mythology, the Sirens were actually winged, half-human, half-bird creatures.
  • According to literature, the Sirens lived on an island near Scylla and Charybdis (traditionally located in the Strait of Messina between Italy and Sicily).
  • In most folklore, sirens have been shown singing songs.
  • In most Greek poet and tradition, the Sirens were depicted as beautiful maidens that would sit half-naked on rocky shores. They would then lure sailors to them using their beautiful singing voices; with the sailors following them not knowing that they are sailing into problems.
  • According to classical Greek poets and traditions, there are around seven named sirens, they include: Anglaope, Molpe, Peisinoe, Thelxiope, Leucosia, Pathenope and Ligeia.
  • The sirens are often cited as being fathered by the river God Achelous, with the mother usually being cited as being one of the nine muses, they include: Calliope, Terpischore, Melpomene or Sterope.
  • A famous Greek folktale claimed that the Sirens were fated to die if any mortal should hear them sing and live to tell the story.

Mermaids

  • In folklore, a mermaid is an aquatic creature with the head and the upper body of a female human and the tail of a fish.
  • Mermaids are present in almost every culture’s mythology, from Europe and the Americas, to the Near East, Africa and Asia.
  • In all folklores, mermaids are depicted as magical creatures that live and dwell under the sea with their own culture and customs.
  • In many poets and traditions, mermaids are usually depicted as peaceful, non-violent creatures that try to live their lives away from human interference.
  • In some folklore, mermaids are sometimes associated with perilous events such as floods, storms, and shipwrecks and drowning.
  • A famous Greek folktale claimed that Alexander the Great’s sister, Thessalonike was transformed into a mermaid upon her death in 295 BC and lived in the Aegean Sea.

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