Creatures

Take a tour of the Icelandic Sea Monster Museum

Curator has "tangible evidence" that beasts from the deep really exist, which he showcases alongside creature art

Magnús Óskarsson says the shores of Arnarfjordur fjord are a hotspot for sea monster activity. So much so that he was moved to set up a museum dedicated to the creatures in nearby village Bildudalur.

Visitors to the Icelandic Sea Monster Museum can see the beasties come to life through "a lively mix of words, images and videos that together create an action-packed multimedia display."

The museum offers on-screen eye-witnesses accounts of sightings, alongside academic theories on the nature of sea monsters.

There are also a variety of relics and artefacts relating to this very unique branch of zoology – "tangible evidence", Magnús says, of the creatures existence. 

Magnús is also looking to secure sea monster-themed fantasy artwork to display in the museum and on its exterior walls. 

Here, the curator tell us more about three types of sea beasts:

Hafmaður/Sea Man 
Like humans, sea monsters come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Easily recognised from his huge paunch and the massive claws thrusting out from his front paws or arms, the Sea Man is a cannibal and a particular menace to anyone travelling near the sea. A deep-sea creature in his natural habitat. Accounts crediting him with the deaths of at least 24 unfortunate victims. 

Fjörulalli/Shore Laddie
Smallest of the sea monsters, the Shore Laddie is also the most common. Slightly longer than a sheep but very different in appearance, he lives in the forests of marine vegetation on which he also feeds. He has been spotted several times ashore grazing on seaweed, the remains of which can be seen in his droppings.

Faxaskrímsli/CombedMonster/Sea Horse
As his name suggests, the Combed Monster or Sea Horse is readily identifiable from his bright red mane and flashing green eyes. Closely resembling the dragons portrayed in Chinese art, he is extremely common in Arnarfjörður, and may be the beast formerly known as Red Comb by seamen, to whom he represented a real threat. Lives on a diet of mussels, when not eating human flesh.

To find out more about the Icelandic Sea Monster Museum, head over to www.skrimsli.is.

 

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