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Loch Ness Monster Essay

The term “monster” was reportedly applied for the first time to the creature on 2 May 1933 by Alex Campbell, the water bailiff for Loch Ness and a part-time journalist, in a report in The Inverness Courier. [9][10][11] On 4 August 1933, the Courier published as a full news item the assertion of a London man, George Spicer, that a few weeks earlier while motoring around the loch, he and his wife had seen “the nearest approach to a dragon or pre-historic animal that I have ever seen in my life”, trundling across the road toward the loch carrying “an animal” in its mouth. 12]

Other letters began appearing in the Courier, often anonymously, with claims of land or water sightings, either by the writer or by family or acquaintances, or stories they remembered being told. [13] These stories soon reached the national (and later the international) press, which described a “monster fish”, “sea serpent”, or “dragon”,[14] eventually settling on “Loch Ness Monster”. [15]

On 6 December 1933, the first purported photograph of the monster, taken by Hugh Gray, was published in the Daily Express,[16] and shortly afterwards the creature received official notice when the Secretary of State for Scotland ordered the police to prevent any attacks on it. [17] In 1934, interest was further sparked by what is known as The Surgeon’s Photograph. In the same year R. T. Gould published a book,[18] the first of many that describe the author’s personal investigation and collected record of additional reports predating 1933. Other authors have claimed that sightings of the monster go as far back as the 6th century (see below).

History Saint Columba (565) The earliest report of a monster associated with the vicinity of Loch Ness appears in the Life of St. Columba by Adomnan, written in the 7th century. [19] According to Adomnan, writing about a century after the events he described, the Irish monk Saint Columba was staying in the land of the Picts with his companions when he came across the locals burying a man by the River Ness. They explained that the man had been swimming in the river when he was attacked by a “water beast” that had mauled him and dragged him under.

They tried to rescue him in a boat, but could only drag up his corpse. Hearing this, Columba stunned the Picts by sending his follower Luigne moccu Min to swim across the river. The beast came after him, but Columba made the sign of the Cross and commanded: “Go no further. Do not touch the man. Go back at once. “[20] The beast immediately halted as if it had been “pulled back with ropes” and fled in terror, and both Columba’s men and the pagan Picts praised God for the miracle. [20] The oldest manuscript relating to this story was put online in 2012. [21]

Believers in the Loch Ness Monster often point to this story, set in the River Ness rather than the loch itself, as evidence for the creature’s existence as early as the 6th century. [22] However, sceptics question the narrative’s reliability, noting that water-beast stories were extremely common in medieval hagiographies; as such, Adomnan’s tale is likely to be a recycling of a common motif attached to a local landmark. [23] According to the sceptics, Adomnan’s story may be independent of the modern Loch Ness Monster legend entirely, only becoming attached to it in retrospect by believers seeking to bolster their claims. 22]

R. Binns acknowledges that this account is the most serious of various alleged early sightings of the monster, but argues that all other claims of monster sightings prior to 1933 are highly dubious and do not prove that there was a tradition of the monster before this date. [10] D. Mackenzie (c. 1871–72) Sightings of the Loch Ness Monster pre-1933 were rare, but some did occur. [24] One such sighting occurred in October 1871 or 1872, by a Dr D. Mackenzie of Balnain. He described seeing an object that looked much like a log or upturned boat “wriggling and churning up the water”.

The object moved slowly at first, then disappeared off at a faster speed. [25][26] Mackenzie sent his story in a letter to Rupert Gould in 1934, shortly after popular interest in the monster skyrocketed. [26] Spicers (1933) Modern interest in the monster was sparked by a sighting on 22 July 1933, when George Spicer and his wife saw “a most extraordinary form of animal” cross the road in front of their car. [12]

They described the creature as having a large body (about 4 feet (1. m) high and 25 feet (8 m) long), and a long, narrow neck, slightly thicker than an elephant’s trunk and as long as the 10–12-foot (3–4 m) width of the road; the neck had undulations in it. They saw no limbs, possibly because of a dip in the road obscuring the animal’s lower portion. [27] It lurched across the road towards the loch 20 yards (20 m) away, leaving only a trail of broken undergrowth in its wake. [27]

In August 1933 a motorcyclist named Arthur Grant claimed to have nearly hit the creature while approaching Abriachan towards the north-eastern end of the loch, at about 1 a. . on a moonlit night. Grant claimed that he saw a small head attached to a long neck, and that the creature saw him and crossed the road back into the loch. A veterinary student, he described it as a hybrid between a seal and a plesiosaur. Grant said he dismounted and followed it to the loch, but only saw ripples. [18][28] Some believe this story was intended as a humorous explanation of a motorcycle accident. [29] Sightings of the monster increased after a road was built along the loch in early 1933, bringing both workmen and tourists to the formerly isolated area. 30]

Sporadic land sightings continued until 1963, when poor quality film of the creature was shot in the loch from a distance of 4 kilometres. [31] Chief Constable William Fraser (1938) In 1938, William Fraser, Chief Constable of Inverness-shire, wrote in a letter that the monster existed beyond doubt. His letter expressed concern about a hunting party that had arrived armed with a specially-made harpoon gun and were determined to catch the monster “dead or alive”. He believed his power to protect the monster from the hunters was “very doubtful”.

The letter was released by the National Archives of Scotland on 27 April 2010. 32][33] C. B. Farrel (1943) In May 1943, C. B. Farrel of the Royal Observer Corps was supposedly distracted from his duties by a Nessie sighting. He claimed to have been about 230 metres (750 ft) away from a large-eyed, ‘finned’ creature, which had a 6-to-9-metre (20 to 30 ft) long body, and a neck that protruded about 1. 2 to 1. 5 m (4 to 5 ft) out of the water. [34] Sonar contact (1954) In December 1954 a strange sonar contact was made by the fishing boat Rival III. The vessel’s crew observed sonar readings of a large object keeping pace with the boat at a depth of 146 metres (479 ft).

It was detected travelling for 800 m (2,600 ft) in this manner, before contact was lost, but then found again later. [34] Many sonar attempts had been made previously, but most were either inconclusive or negative. Photographs and films Hugh Gray’s photograph (1933) On 12 November 1933, Hugh Gray was walking along the loch after church when he spotted a substantial commotion in the water. A large creature rose up from the lake. Gray took several pictures of it, but only one of them showed up after they were developed. This image appeared to show a creature with a long tail and thick body at the surface of the loch.

The image is blurred, suggesting that the animal was splashing. Four stumpy-looking objects on the bottom of the creature’s body might possibly be a pair of appendages, such as flippers. [35] Although critics have claimed that the photograph is of Gray’s labrador retriever swimming towards the camera (possibly carrying a stick), researcher Roland Watson rejects this interpretation and suggests there is an eel-like head on the right side of the image. [36] This is the first known photograph allegedly taken of the Loch Ness Monster.

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