The sightings date back to 565 CE when the Irish Saint Columba claimed he saw the Niseag (the Celtic name for Nessie) when he attended a burial for a man who had been bitten to death by the monster. While it has been sighted in the subsequent centuries, it was not until the 19th century that the sightings become more frequent. The most famous encounter was perhaps in the summer of 1933. On that day Mr. and Mrs. Spicer, returning from a trip to London, saw a monster cross the road, with an animal in his jaws, and submerge in the lake. This incident drew the attention of the world press and Nessie became an international phenomena. There have been many expeditions since, but none as successful as to prove its existence. Also the many sightings, photos and films have been inconclusive.
Other lakes and monsters
Loch Ness is not the only lake reputed to be inhabited by a monster. In Scotland there is also Loch Morar, where there have been sightings of such a creature. In Ireland there are two Loughs ("lakes"), Lough Ree and Lough Fedda, where there have been glimpses of a peista (meremonster). Also in the Scandinavian countries are many tales about monsters in lakes. In Iceland there is the Skrimsl, also called Lagerfljótsskrímslið, which has been seen in the Lagerfljót Lake and in many other lakes besides. In Norway, in Lake Sudal, lives an animal of great size; the head is as big as a small rowboat. The first encounter with the monster of the Storsjö Lake in Sweden took place in 1839. The farmers who saw it claimed it resembled a great sea-horse: red, with white manes. Faster than other monsters, this one can reach speeds up to 70 km (43 mi.) per hour. Another famous monster is that of Lake Okanagan, Canada. This creature, called Ogopogo or Naitaka, has been regularly sighted since 1854.