Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Daedalus Monster

By Mike Burleson

In 1848, the Captain of the Royal Navy frigate HMS
Daedalus sent a detailed report of sighting a strange creature at sea:
"With head and shoulders kept about four feet constantly above the sea
and at the very least sixty feet of the animal a fleur d'eau (just
above)... It passed rapidly, but so close under our lee quarter that,
had it been a man of my acquaintance, I should have recognized his
features with the naked eye... The diameter of the serpent was about 15
or 16 inches behind the head, which was without a doubt that of a
snake."

Almost immediately after the release of the report to the
public, eminent scientists began to pour scorn on the sighting,
declaring it to be a large seal or a whale. But the Captain of HMS
Daedalus stuck to his guns, declaring forthrightly "I adhere to the
statements... in my official report to the Admiralty". A few months
later he was supported in his sighting by the captain of an American
brig, the Daphne. In nearly the same location of the Royal Navy ship,
the crew of Daphne spotted a sea serpent nearly 100 feet long that bore
some resemblance to the Daedalus sighting. When the brig fired cannon
at the creature, it was said to have escaped at the rate of 15 or 16
knots.

Still doubts persisted, even more after two vessels
declared they came upon a mass of floating seaweed in the location of
the sighting, which they at first thought to be a sea monster. To this
day the existence of sea serpents has yet to be confirmed, though
encounters continue unabated. Up until the HMS Daedalus account there
had never been such a detailed report from an official source as a
Royal Navy officer.

My
name is Mike Burleson and I currently reside in historic Branchville,
SC. Last year I completed my first book also titled "New Wars-The
Transformation of Armies, Navies, and Airpower in the Digital Age",
available for purchase from Blurb.com
As a freelancer my articles on military issues have appeared in The
American Thinker, The Washington Post, Sea Classics Magazine,
Townhall.com via Opeds.com, Buzzle.com, and Strategypage.com. My blog
title New Wars concerning military issues is updated daily.


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