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Mother Shipton
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    (circa 1488-circa 1561)
    Born in Knaresborough, Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom
    Birth name was Ursula Southeil
    Alleged witch and prophet
    She may not have existed.
    According to legend, she was conceived when her mother had sex with the Devil.
    She was said to be hideously ugly.
    The first collection of her prophecies was published 80 years after her death (by which point most of the 'predictions' were of events long past).
    Her most famous prophecy, a prediction of future technology ('Carriages without horses shall goe' etc.) was a forgery from the 1860s.
    The cave where she was allegedly born was a tourist attraction as early as 1630.
    A species of moth was named after her, since it has markings resembling a crone's head in profile on each wing.
    In his diaries, Samuel Pepys recorded that while surveying the damage done to London by the Great Fire (1666) with the Royal Family, they discussed Mother Shipton's prophecy of it.

Credit: C. Fishel

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