European cartographers label large island off the French coast “Here be monsters”

THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK: World beating continental map makers have identified the existence of an island off the northwestern coast of France. Unfortunately, all attempts to visit the island or engage in communication have ended in failure.

There is clearly some kind of hostile life there. Vessels bearing friendly envoys have been sunk. Some kind of dialogue has been attempted, but the replies have been unintelligible.

“The language used by the islanders sounds like a particularly debased form of Anglo-Saxon,” declared languages expert Polly Glott. “It is as if the natives have removed all the verbs, nouns and grammar, and all that is left is a stream of extremely crude and bilious invective.”

In other words, a jumble of hateful swear words. Nevertheless the hand of friendship was extended.

“We sent a boat – not a big one, we didn’t want them to think we were invading – but they weren’t happy with it,” revealed European Friendship Minister Bon Homie. “We loaded it with delicacies such as ripe camembert, sauerkraut and garlic but were repelled by a group of humanoids with blunderbusses. They resembled fat, middle-aged men, with angry red faces. It was like being attacked by animated jambon.”

But there was more trouble afoot.

“The inhabitants all seemed to be suffering from a mystery ailment,” claimed medical advisor Di Agnosis. “They coughed continuously and their skin was loose and blotchy. And they smelled terrible. There must be some kind of endemic plague over there.”

In the end the island was mapped by satellite, although hostile satellites, bearing racist symbols and held together with gaffer tape, tried to knock it out of the way.

In the end, the Europeans gave up the attempt to welcome the islanders into a mutually beneficial alliance. Cartographers redrew the maps to show the island, but asked what name to assign to this terra incognita. Instead they were given a description.

Here be monsters.

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