Crossword Genius

Merman, maybe? (5)

Ross

I believe the answer is:

ethel

I'm a little stuck...
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Here is my best explanation:

'merman' is the definition.
(I've seen this before)

I cannot understand how the remainder of the clue works.

Ross

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This clue was last seen in Evening Standard

(Other definitions for ethel that I've seen before include "- Merman, US musical comedy star", "Dame --- Smyth; William Brown's sister", "- Barrymore, actress", "Woman", "Lady", "A woman", "Lethe (anag) -- Barrymore or Merman", "Trying not to be seen", "Female name" and "girl".)

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