Wednesday, 20 July 2011

The Mermaid Of Zennor

Once upon a time not so long ago there lived a man called Matthew Trewhella. He was the finest singer in the Land’s End area of Cornwall and knew all the old ballads as well as some raucous ones too. He sang at folk nights, in a couple of bands and in the church at Zennor on a Sunday, a village nestled amongst granite rocks and yellow gorse.

One day a beautiful woman came to the service, slipping in the back of the church. She had heard his haunting songs drifting over the waves of Pendower Cove that was her abode for she was a mermaid of the sea and her name was Morveren. 

She begged her father King Llyr that she may go on land to see the man who sang such exquisite songs and after many a plea he agreed but on the condition that she let no human see her and that she return before high tide else she would be trapped on land and perish. So she swam to the shore and hid her tail beneath a sarong embroidered with pearls and coral. Painfully she crossed the tarmac of the road and entered the church where she gazed at the golden-haired man before her.

Each Sunday she returned, always disappearing before the service ended that none may see her. But one week she sighed so deeply he looked to the back of the church and saw her and fell instantly in love. 

She slipped out of the church as fast as she could but Matthew ran after her and as she fell he lifted her up, catching a glimpse of her fish’s tail. But his love was so great he cared not and in an instant made the decision to spend the rest of his life with her in the deep turquoise sea.

People ran from the church and tried to catch the couple but magic was on their side and Matthew raced over the rocks to where the tide crashed white. They dived in and all that was left was his t-shirt floating on a wave’s crest.

To this day if you wander out at night onto the headland at Zennor you may be lucky to hear the sweet singing of Matthew Trewhella and see Morveren sat on the rocks combing her luxuriant green hair.


  1. I am looking forward to the sequel: Return to Zennor (starring Elvis Trewhella).

  2. Now what a sequel that'd be and sure to stir a media frenzy! Sorry about the dulcet pic, I'm a bit slow when it comes to checking comments, but if you want to use a pic in the future for your word of the week posts just ask

  3. I have heard their combined voices rise up out of the Irish Sea, such is their joint vocal abilities.

    Wonderful tale! Goddess bless your imagination :)

  4. Best beware you aren't enticed yourself into the fishy world of the mer people or it may be your voice heard eerily at dusk and dawnn rising from the Irish Sea!