The mermaid legend of Damme
Once upon a time during the early Middle Ages some inhabitants of the city Damme, near the city of Bruges, caught a mermaid named Cassandra that was washed ashore. They brought the poor creature to the market square of the city and exposed her for everybody to see.
The mermaid struggled, cried and begged to be released but the people of Damme refused to give in. However they should have known better.
As long as there were people around the mermaid was exposed every day, some had to pay a lot of money to see her. The mermaid got desperate and dopressed. She hadn’t spoken a single word for days. But on the third day she proclaimd a spell and yelled: “Damme will die, Bruges will live!”
Cassandra had to pay for her curse and as a punishment she was thrown into a pit where she died of grief. However, the curse of Cassandra became reality and while Damme got stuck in history, the city of Bruges became the new city for trade and beauty.
The Mermaids pit is located near the restaurant "The Siphon" and if you look closely, you can see the mermaid is still in the Damme area, namely as a weather vane on the "Scellemeulen" mill. Or who knows, maybe in the water of the "Damse Vaart" in front of The mill of Damme.