This mermaid story concerns a German, fresh water sprite (or mermaid) called a Nixie. They are always very beautiful and usually evil. In this story a Nixie tricks a man into trading his only son for fortune and happiness. After receiving his boons, the man refuses to give his son to the Nix. But he warns his son to stay away from the mill pond where the Nixie lives.

One day, when the son had grown up and married, he is hunting near the nixie's pond. He kills a dear and forgetting where he is washes his hands in the water. Immediately, the nixie grabs him and pulls him under.

That night his wife wonders what has happened to him. Knowing the mermaid story she visits the pond and finds his knife there. She cries by the pond for days but he does not reappear. In a dream an wise, old woman invites her to her house. Awakening, she finds the old woman's house who gives her a gold comb. She tells her to sit by the pond combing her hair for a time, then to lay the comb near the water.

The young woman returns to the pond and combs her hair. She lays the comb near the water and a small wave washes it away. For a second she sees her husband's head.

She goes back to the wise woman's house and tells her what has happened. After that the wise woman gives her more golden items, telling her to use each by the pond and then leave it by the water. Each time she does she sees more of her husband's body. Finally, her husband is thrown up into the air by a water spout and is able to jump onto the shore. Then the waters in the pond rise and chase the pair through the woods. The wise old woman turns them into frogs and in that form they survive the flood. However, they are separated by the waters and do not find each other again for many years.

The nixie in this story is a very powerful being. Like the mermaid, the nix is a water spirit, she has control over her element – the water. Click here to read a mermaid story that shows how mermaids also control the creatures of the water.

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