At the beginning of the 21st Century monsters still roam the remote, and sometimes not so remote, corners of our planet. It is our job to search for them. The Centre for Fortean Zoology [CFZ] is - we believe - the largest professional, scientific and full-time organisation in the world dedicated to cryptozoology - the study of unknown animals. Since 1992 the CFZ has carried out an unparalleled programme of research and investigation all over the world. Since 2009 we have been running the increasingly popular CFZ Blog Network, and although there has been an American branch of the CFZ for over ten years now, it is only now that it has a dedicated blog.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016


Davy Jones is a monstrous and demonic being, variously shaped, in sailors' lore.  The question that arises is whether he represents a genuine mythological being or whether he was just invented as a euphemism for drowning as Davy Jones's Locker means the place where drowned sailors go.

Davy Jones is not mentioned in earlier works.  The first we hear of him is in a reference by Daniel Defoe in 1726.  Did matelots of yore believe he was a real creature?

Some clue may be afforded us if we look at the origin of his name.  Finding this poses a problem, however, as this origin cannot be determined.  Some surmise it means "ghost of Jonah".  Some would see in "Davy" the duppy of Jamaican belief.  It has even been suggested that his name was suggested by an unfortunate short-sighted sailor known as Duffer Jones who, because of his affliction, kept falling overboard.

Lewis Spence has suggested, however, that he is some kind of Celtic spirit with a mythical pedigree.  He points out that his name is possibly Welsh, Davy being a common Welsh name (St David is the patron of Wales) and Jones is widespread as a Welsh surname.
He also suggests that "Locker" may be a form of Ochren, which seems in Welsh legend to stand for the realm of the dead.

I like the Duffer Jones explanation myself.

Davy Jones was not always conceived in human form and may have been a shapeshifter.  For example, see the picture below.

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