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Photographer's Note

The legend of the Merlion is a charming story. I am pasting part of it here:

The Legend Of The Merlion

On a rocky saddle in the middle of Sentosa's north-south axis, sits the majestic Merlion, half lion, half fish, powerful and regal in mien. Its paternal gaze rests with joyous pride on Singapore, the prosperous island it has protected through the ages.

Legend has it that this rocky saddle just below Mt Imbiah was the seat for the real Merlion, the legendary guardian of Singapore.

Ancient Singapore, known as Temasek, was discovered in the 11th Century AD by Prince Sang Nila Utama of the Sri Vijaya empire. He renamed the island Singapura, Sanskrit for Lion (Singa) and City (Pura) after he saw a mighty lion. The prince also heard the legend of how The Merlion came to Sentosa...

On a dark night long ago, a chill swept over the sleepy villages of Temasek. Thick scudding clouds wiped out the stars. The villagers tossed in restless slumber. Even the night insects faltered in their busy chattering.

The frenzied wind whipped the sea and tore at the trees, threatening the flimsy houses. The crashing waves pounded the beaches, threatening to engulf the land with every passing moment. Awake by now, the villagers, half paralysed with fear at nature's raw power, sank to their knees in prayer.

Suddenly a shout went out.

A wondrous sight was unfolding. The boiling sea sparkled as thousands of iridescent, colourful sea creatures surged towards land. They heard the magical sound of bells, heralding the arrival of something.

A huge geyser spouted from the sea. A great sea beast reared its massive head among the creatures. Phosphorescence dripped from its lion's mane. It was bigger and more graceful than any creature ever seen.

A great roar ripped from its throat and shook the land. With mighty thrusts of its tail, it headed for the rocky saddle. The multitude of sea creatures prepared its path, squirting water from their mouths to smooth the way.

With thunder in its eyes and anger ripping through its body, the half lion, half fish beast fought the thundering skies and blasting wind. Roar after terrible roar ripped from its throat.

The terrified villagers cowered on the beach as the battle between beast and nature raged. Slowly, the wind lost its force and the crashing waves their violence. In victory, the great sea beast let out one long, last mighty triumphant blast that shattered the sky.

By magic, the clouds and the wind retreated and the sea calmed down. The stars poured out in a mighty wave of twinkling light. Peace swept the land. The mighty sea beast tossed its salt drenched mane, and gazed benevolently on the cowering villagers. The sea creatures broke into joyous celebration.

There is more to the story you can read in its entirety at: http://www.tellingtales.com/Spotlite/Singapore/Merlion.htm

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Photo Information
  • Copyright: Joy Kelley (rkyobo) (46)
  • Genre: Places
  • Medium: Color
  • Date Taken: 2005-09-04
  • Categories: Artwork
  • Photo Version: Original Version
  • Date Submitted: 2005-09-04 10:46
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