Paul the Octopus
|Paul the Octopus|
|Paul in his tank, next to a football boot with the German flag colours|
|Other appellation(s)||"Paul" Oktopus
Paul der Krake
|Born||Weymouth, England, or in the waters off Elba, Italy|
|Died||26 October 2010
Psychic Football Pundit 2008–2010
|Known for||Predicting results of Germany's football matches|
|Owner||Sea Life Centres (aquarium keeper: Oliver Walenciak)|
|Named after||A poem by Boy Lornsen, Der Tintenfisch Paul Oktopus|
Paul the Octopus (said to be hatched January 2008 at Oberhausen, Germany– 26 October 2010) was an octopus living in a tank at a Sea Life Centre in Oberhausen, Germany. Paul became famous around the world for correctly "choosing" the winner of Germany's seven matches at the 2010 World Cup, as well as the final.
During the divinations, Paul was shown two boxes with a mussel inside them, for food. Each box had, on the outside, a flag of a football team. Paul would eat the mussel from the box with the flag of the winning team. He did this correctly in four of Germany's six Euro 2008 matches, and in all seven of their matches in the 2010 World Cup. He correctly chose a win for Spain against the Netherlands in the World Cup final. His predictions were 100% (8/8) right for the 2010 World Cup and 86% (12/14) correct overall. Paul was retired after the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
It was at first said that Paul's career as an oracle began during the UEFA Euro 2008 tournament. In the lead-up to Germany's international football matches, Paul (or a similar octopus) was presented with two clear plastic boxes, each containing food: a mussel or an oyster. Each container was marked with the flag of a team, one the flag of Germany, and the other the flag of Germany's opponent. The box which Paul opened first (and ate the contents of) was judged to be the predicted winner of the game.
Under the thought that Paul had the same chances of choosing the winner or the loser of a match, and not considering the chance of a draw, he had a 1/2 chance of rightly choosing any single game and a 1/256 chance of rightly choosing eight in a row.
On October 26 2010, Paul died of natural causes after being inactive for the last few days.
- Christenson, Marcus. "Octopus Paul predicts Spain to beat Holland in World Cup final". The Guardian. http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2010/jul/09/psychic-octopus-paul-picks-spain. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
- Por Rafael Maranhão Direto de Oberhausen, Alemanha (2010-06-29). "Oceanário diz que polvo-profeta não tem preço | globoesporte.com". Globoesporte.globo.com. http://globoesporte.globo.com/futebol/copa-do-mundo/noticia/2010/07/oceanario-diz-que-polvo-profeta-nao-tem-preco.html. Retrieved 2010-07-14.
- "Paul the octopus chooses Spain over Germany". IOL. 6 July 2010. http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=6&click_id=2831&art_id=nw20100706122010966C453441. Retrieved 8 July 2010.
- Erskine, Carole (25 June 2010), "Psychic Octopus to Predict England Result", Sky News, http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/Strange-News/Octopus-Psychic-Paul-To-Predict-England-Germany-Result-By-Picking-Box-With-Flag-On-It/Article/201006415654410?lpos=Strange_News_Second_Home_Page_Article_Teaser_Region_4&lid=ARTICLE_15654410_Octopus:_Psychic_Paul_To_Predict_England_Germany_Result_By_Picking_Box_With_Flag_On_It, retrieved 9 July 2010
- 'Psychic' octopus predicts Germany victory over England, BBC News, 25 June 2010, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/10420131.stm
- Germans shell-shocked by oracle octopus, Reuters, 6 July 2010, http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6651FI20100706