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Fingal’s Cave: Scotland’s Majestic Sea Cavern with Hexagonal Columns

The myths behind it are pretty enchanting, too.

Back in 1772, Fingal’s Cave was discovered by naturalist Sir Joseph Banks on the Scottish island of Staffa. It’s something out of a fantasy world as it towers 72 feet above the sea and reaches 270 feet deep into the waters, its hexagonal columns of basalt in proud display.

Fingal’s Cave is one of the several sea caverns on the island. As the most popular one, it has been featured in many written and visual works from the 19th century onward. Aside from its astounding beauty courtesy of nature’s power, Fingal’s Cave has some colorful folklores attached to it, too.

One Irish legend refers to the sea cave as “The Cave of Melody” or “Uamh-Binn” in Celtic.

According to the legend, the sea cave was once part of a large bridge across the sea. The bridge was built by the Irish giant Fionn mac Cumhail (also known as Finn McCool), who wanted to reach Scotland to fight his rival Benandonner. The same legend refers to the creation of another bridge, known as the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland, with a similar look. Rumor has it that the two structures formed the two ends of the giant’s bridge.

Interestingly, this story can actually be scientifically supported.

The island of Staffa is a volcanic island with authentic geological features, such as a multitude of caves and basalt columns. These features are typical for the two caves. It is presumed that they were formed from an ancient and massive lava flow that created a bridge between the two spots. The slow cooling of the lava is believed to have created the hexagonal columns which formed the surface of the caves.

Another story, dating back to 250 AD, has enchanted admirers of Fingal’s Cave.

In it, the protagonist is Irish General Finn MacCumhaill, also known as Fingal and the father of Ireland’s traditional troubadour and poet named Oisín. The legend goes that General Fingal had a group of loyal warriors (much like the story of King Arthur and Knights of the Round Table). When the Gaels left Ireland and moved to Scotland, they brought the great stories of Fingal with them. Soon, the general was admired and honored by the Scottish, who, inspired by the heroic verse and songs of Ossian, assigned his name to the sea cavern.

Many artists were inspired by Fingal’s Cave after its discovery in 1772.

One of them was Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, whose “Hebridean Overture [Fingal’s Cave]” was inspired by his encounter with the cave. His composition highlighted the site’s uniqueness. At the time, over 300 people visited Fingal’s Cave every day. Among the notable visitors were John Keats, Joseph Turner, Queen Victoria, and William Wordsworth.

Others

132-Year Old Lobster Set Free in the Ocean After Living in a Fish Tank for 2 Decades!

His owner finally “pardoned” him and released him back to the water to live out his days as a free man, I mean, crustacean.

You hear about prisoners earning their dues, getting pardoned, and then released from jail after exhibiting good behavior and all that jazz? Well, this was what this ancient lobster must have felt like when, after spending 2 decades in a fish tank, his "owner" finally "pardoned" him and released him back to the water to live out his days as a free man, I mean, crustacean.

Louie the Lobster has been one of the attractions at Peter's Clam Bar on Long Island. A fish tank served as his home for 20 years; he has become such a fixture in there that the owner Butch Yamali considered him more as a pet than the next item on the menu. Butch inherited Louie when he purchased the restaurant years ago - the lobster was part of the package.

Well, Butch loved Louie so much that he refused a customer that offered $1000 to have the lobster cooked for Father's Day.

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Art

A Barista In Taiwan Makes Realistic 3D Cockroach Latte Art

Would you like a cockroach on that coffee, sir?

Coffee foam design is one of the staple gimmicks on most coffee shops around the world. Some barista fancy simple shapes, while others try to create pop-culture icons. However, a coffee shop in Taiwan went viral because of its barista’s odd foam design choice for their coffee.

My Cofi is being run by its barista Chang Kuei Fang for 14 years already. Her coffee shop caught the attention of the world after sharing images of their coffee designs like cockroaches and centipedes.

Fret not though, because this creepy cockroach is only made from delicious chocolate and foam.

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Interesting

Scientist Shows Some Fascinating Things About Venom, Blood And A Beating Heart

Note to self: don’t ever get bitten by a venomous snake.

It goes without saying that venom is scary. It can do a lot of things in our body, and none of them are good. It’s one of the main reasons why many species in the animal kingdom are deadly.

However, it appears that scientists have no time for fear due to their curious nature.

The Youtube channel Nature of Science just released an informative video about venoms.

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