"Come seek us where our voices sound,
We cannot sing above the ground,
And while you're searching, ponder this;
We've taken what you'll sorely miss..."
Sirens (greek); Selkies (scotland); Merrows (ireland); Merry Maid (cornwall);
Lorelei & Meerfrau (germany); Rusalka (russia); Mermaid (hans christian anderson);
Nymphs seduce men. They entice tired handsome travelers and keep them hostage under the cold dark water for the rest of their unfortunate(?) lives.
Sirens (bird-women turned nymphs) sing hypnotic songs to lure sailors into destruction.
Merpeople "do not take kindly to those who enter their domain". They do not sing, but screech when above water. They have yellow eyes, broken teeth, wear chokers of shark fangs and carry spears to poke anyone who enters "their domain".
Mermaids, the fairer and kinder of merpeople, fall in love with mere mortals, give up their voices alongwith their immortality to be with one, and eventually turn into sea-foam to sing to lost sailors.
Narfs are confused nymphs with absolutely no mystical powers. They have bad hair-do, bewildered looks, and whiter-than-white albino skin that separate them from the rest of us. They come from the "Blue World" to warn, help and "awaken" humankind. Humans carry them around and use sign-language to communicate during narf-ous breakdowns.
Hylas & the nymphs: artist Waterhouse, 1896
Merpeople: harry potter (goblet of fire)
Sirens: artist Herbert Draper, 1909
Narfs: Shyamalanesque Lady in the Water
Shyam-Alan, you are still a cutie...