Pharyngula

The Eternal Fishmonger

I’ve been told that there is a drop of old Dutch blood in my ancestry—that way back in the 17th century, an intrepid few Dutch immigrants mingled their seed with the mongrel mess of my father’s line. I think now I sense a kindred spirit. Adriaen Coenensz, a fisherman and fish seller from Scheveningen in Holland wrote and illustrated a book between 1577 and 1580 titled Het Visboek (“The Fishbook“). It’s an amazing browse. Apparently, Coenensz was interested in adventure and exotic dining experiences…

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…he was an early devotee of science fiction…

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…and most of all, he was obsessed with squid and fish. There’s page after page of aquatic organisms.

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It suits my fancy to imagine that Old Adriaen had a few grandchildren who emigrated to the New World, intermarried with English and Scots and German settlers, had families that drifted west with the frontier, ended up on the Pacific coast where they blended with Swedes and Norwegians, and the end result is me, here to carry on the long-hallowed family tradition. Frater, ave atque vale!