Isle of Demons

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Isle of Demons
Ruysch map, Gruenlant-Antilia.jpg
Inscription of the Isle of Demons off Newfoundland in the map. Notice Antillia further south.
Johannes Ruysch's 1508 Map location
Type Phantom island
Notable locations Quirpon Island, Newfoundland, Canada

The Isle of Demons is a legendary land once believed to exist on Quirpon Island, Newfoundland in Canada. It was generally shown as two islands. It began appearing on maps in the beginning of the 16th century, and disappeared in the mid-17th century.

It was believed that the island was populated by demons and wild beasts. The demons and wild beasts would torment and attack any ships that passed or anyone that was foolish enough to wander onto the island. There is also a legend that a sea captain's niece who became pregnant while having an affair with one of the sailors was marooned on the island along with her lover where they were tormented by demons and evil spirits. George Martin, a late 19th-century Canadian poet living in Montreal, wrote a long poem “Marguerite, Or The Isle Of Demons” chronicling the legend. Residents of the area and visitors have claimed that they have seen the couple wander the island in their desperate search to be rescued.

The Isle of Demons first appears in the 1508 map of Johannes Ruysch. It may simply be a relocated version of the older legendary island of Satanazes ("Devils" in Portuguese), that was normally depicted in 15th-century maps in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, just north of Antillia. With the Atlantic Ocean better mapped with the trans-oceanic voyages of the 1490s, Ruysch may simply have transplanted old Satanazes to a more suitable location.

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