Mermaid’s are things of mystery and legend, and the Maiden of Warsaw is no exception.
Syrenka, or mermaid, holding a shield and traditional sword is the symbol of the ancient city of Warsaw, Poland. One Polish legend describes a water goddess, or Melusina, that led Duke Bolesław II of Masovia to a small fishing village on the Wisła river that was perfect positioned for fortification. Thus, the mighty stronghold city of Warsaw was founded in the early 1300s. Another legend tells of Syrenka falling deeply in love with a Polish soldier. When her true love fell in battle against the invading Swedes, she took up her sword and shield to defend his native city of Warsaw.
It’s safe to say that the mermaids from the rivers of Poland were much more kind to men than their mythical counterparts from around the world, who often sought to lure men with beauty and song to watery graves.
The symbol of the Maiden has accompanied many men into battle since the 1300s. Most recently, Syrenka was worn by General Władisław Anders’ Polish 2nd Corps during the campaign against the Germans in Italy in WWII, and is worn to this day by the British Queen’s Royal Hussars as a battlefield honor granted to them by the Polish Corps for extraordinary valor.”