Bestiary: C is for Ceffyl Dŵr

03 bestiary confession word face pexels TIME 111 SML wristwatch copy

Stop press! There is a monster in London!

London, it seems, has its very own monster, or rather the River Thames does. At this moment in time I should point out that when I’m in London, I live just 200 yards/metres from the river.

Seen breaking the surface water and floating for a few seconds here and there in the river, over the last few days, has been a mysterious grey, humped, rather illusive creature. Not quite as big as the much sought-after Loch Ness monster in Scotland, but maybe just as real.

Could this be the Beast of the Thames? BBC News

Speculation in the newspapers is high about the River Thames’ monster. Could it be a dolphin? True, these do sometimes find their way along the River Thames as far as the city, albeit an extremely rare occurrence.

River Thames Monster: Fresh sightings fuel speculation of creature lurking in the depths. London Evening Standard

Could it be a seal? Rarer than a dolphin, they have been known to lose their way and swim the River Thames and pop up near the Houses of Parliament, which nestles the river bank in central London, with a perplexed look. Could it be driftwood? A small whale?

‘Mysterious creature’ spotted swimming in the River Thames. ITV News

Having discounted the aforementioned, it is clear to me that London now has its own ceffyl dŵr [pronounced ‘keff-all door’].

Usually found in Wales (in Scotland they’re known as kelpie), they have been known to move over great distances. Ceffyl dŵr are, literally, ‘water horses’, and usually frequent lakes or waterfalls, but why not rivers?

They are easily recognised as they appear usually as large grey shire horses, with fiery red eyes, and can appear from the water or a thick mist, and disappear back into it in an instant. Some say the ceffyl dŵr have wings, but any anamcara or even a self-respecting a cryptozoologist would question this. However, regardless of the weather, they will always be sopping wet.

Do not try to ride one.

They may look friendly and inviting, but they are, infact, very violent creatures. It is said they have a habit of trampling hapless victims to death or taking the unsuspecting rider back into the water, where the victim is drowned and never seen again.

Meanwhile, the search for the monster goes on, with crowds armed with mobile phone cameras lining the riverbank and animal ‘expert’s taking to boats to catch sight of the creature. If only they knew how elusive, clever and dangerous ceffyl dŵr really are.

2 thoughts on “Bestiary: C is for Ceffyl Dŵr

  1. I SO love this take on this “breaking story” across the pond! I have long loved the lore of Nessie and of the Water Horse. The movie “The Water Horse” is a favorite one! Thanks for the smiles!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m pleased you stopped by and enjoyed this. I’m aiming to share local myths and stories in this bestiary section on a regular basis – mainly it’ll be myth and story from north Wales (where I live about 60% of the time) and maybe a few from ‘old London’ (when I’m there). But, I love old myths and local stories as they can tell us so much about ourselves and/or galvanise our imagination into drive which must be a good thing. That movie was great, and one that I watched so much that I had to put it away for a time, hoping the ‘experience-newness’ would return (and it did!).


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