The kraken is a legendary sea monster of enormous size said to appear off the coasts of Norway. Kraken, the subject of sailors' superstitions and mythos, was first described in the modern age at the turn of the 18th century, in a travelogue by Francesco Negri in 1700. This description was followed in 1734 by an account from Dano-Norwegian missionary and explorer Hans Egede, who described the kraken in detail and equated it with the hafgufa of medieval lore. However, the first description of the creature is usually credited to the Norwegian bishop, Pontoppidan. Pontoppidan was the first to describe the kraken as an octopus of tremendous size, and wrote that it had a reputation for pulling down ships. The French malacologist, Denys-Montfort, of the 19th century is also known for his pioneering inquiries into the existence of gigantic octopuses.

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