The Origins Of Mermaids: Greek Mythology, Ghosts, And Christopher Columbus

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Actress Glynis Johns as the title-role in the film Miranda, 1948. (Photo by Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)

Mermaids have been dazzling seasick sailors and little girls alike since seemingly the beginning of time, but when you think about it, it's pretty odd to be so enamored with the idea of a woman who's half-fish. Where did mermaids come from? Why do we continue to find them so alluring?