How long have people been faking mermaids?
False mermaid claims go back centuries, bring in gullible.
An Animal Planet special called Mermaid: The Body Found is actually fictional but was shot in the style of a real documentary. In reality, mermaid hoaxes have gone back centuries, and the most famous was by P.T. Barnum who had grafted a monkey body with that of a fish to create his FeeJee Mermaid for his famous museum in 1842. A curious side note to this is that there are multiple specimens claiming to be the fake mermaid P.T. Barnum exhibited, though the real one is believed to have burned in a fire in the 1860s. Therefore, the fake mermaid has been faked as an antique. Prior to this, so-called mermaid bodies were a part of sideshows and collections dating back to the Renaissance, where the mummified bodies of people with birth defects and other conditions were purported to be evidence of mermaids.
Notes and Special Information
Special note: The amazing thing about the latest mermaid hoax is that it had so many people convinced despite the fact that they don't believe in things that are actually real.