It is possible that movies like Disney’s Little Mermaid made many of us see mermaids as nice, lovable creatures. Yet this movie was based on a story by Hans Christian Andersen. He wrote a lot of fairytales Disney would one day convert into animated features. His original tale referenced mermaids to be like they were described by sailors. Also known as Sirens, they were mythological monsters who would sing and distract sailors with their songs sometimes causing shipwrecks. Some would jump from the ship to see them, and never return. Sirens likely did not kill the sailors but they likely either drowned or were attacked by numerous sea creatures in the water. Ships obviously hit rocks where the mermaids were thought to be.