(2 syl.). Sea-nymphs, daughter of Nereus (2 syl.), fifty in
or Nereides (4 syl.). Seanymphs. Camoens, in his Lusiad, gives the names of three- Doto, Nyse, and Nerine; but he has
spiritualised their office, and makes them the sea-guardians of the
virtuous. They went before the fleet of Gama, and when the treacherous
pilot supplied by Zaceeia, King of Mozambique, steered the ship of
Vasco da Gama towards a sunken rock, these guardian nymphs pressed
against the prow, lifting it from the water and turning it round. The
pilot, looking to see the cause of this strange occurrence, beheld the
rock which had nearly proved the ruin of the whole fleet (bk. ii.)
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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