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Early stories of mermaids said they could control the ocean. Others described mermaids helping sailors to safety. Ships caught in a storm were in danger. Strong winds could push the ships off course. The ships could wreck or crash into rocks. Mermaids were said to protect sailors who were kind.

Many people think of mermaids as creatures that are female. But stories about merfolk include men and women. For example, legends said the Blue Men of the Minch lived near the Outer Hebrides. This chain of islands lies close to Scotland. These mermen had blue-tinted skin and gray beards. Sailors feared them. The mermen attacked ships and sank them to the bottom of the ocean.

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Making Connections


Some legends say that mermaids built cities underwater. Have you ever tried to build anything underwater? What was it like?


Have you read another book about mermaids? What did that book say that is different than this book?


What are some possible reasons that cultures have different versions of the mermaid myth? Use the information in this book to help you.

Teacher Resources

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