Throughout history, hoaxed mermaids have woven a tale of deception and intrigue, capturing the fascination of curious minds. One notable instance dates back to the 19th century, when P.T. Barnum, the renowned showman, displayed a “Feejee Mermaid” purportedly caught near the Fiji Islands. In reality, this curious creation was a fabrication, an amalgamation of fish and monkey parts meticulously sewn together. Barnum’s exhibit exemplified how showmanship and illusion could exploit people’s yearning for the mysterious and fantastical.
The trend of fabricating mermaid hoaxes persisted into the 20th century, with the infamous “Monkey Man” case in India during 2001. Reports emerged of a creature resembling a half-human, half-fish figure lurking in bodies of water. While fervor and fear spread, investigations revealed the “creature” to be nothing more than monkeys swimming with their heads submerged, creating an illusion of an aquatic humanoid.