Left moldering in journals and slender volumes, her talented tales were soon forgotten, as was she: Particularly memorable to me is one entitled Les annales de la vertu The Annals of Virtue. Although editors had to correct her grammar at first, her fiction was packed with closely described realia and aphoristic turns of phrase, and she had a keen ear for adages, idioms, and colloquial speech.
She continued including French passages in her stories to indicate the prevalence of that language in Moscow society; in a couple of tales, too, she poked fun at social climbers for their bad French. But it also might mean that she spoke Russian peasant-style, as many aristos did because they were brought up by nannies, and her ignorance was of Standard i. It seems that Sofia knew basic Russian but her vocabulary was limited to simple household subjects.
But by the s one would think literary Russian had developed enough to allow for all sorts of sophisticated discussions. No, because her name is Russian, not German. Similarly, I write Tchaikovsky and not the pedantic Chaikovsky or, even worse, Chaikovskii. It would be great if Engelgardt were famous enough under any spelling that I would be driven to use it, but such is not the case. In the latest NYC political-corruption scandal very latest, meaning the one where the charges were announced this morning not the one where the charges were announced Tuesday morning.
I have a handful friends who never really learned their native spanish because they rarely spoke it after they started school. After all, since her family was so euro-minded, she may have preferred to use the german spelling. An excellent question, and if there were a way to find out, I would definitely adopt her spelling. So she was an ethnic-Russian aristocrat by birth, and only a Russified Swiss Livonian Pole by marriage.
Adolphe was the prototype of Onegin. I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. The sketch is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish. If you would like to get much from this paragraph then you have to apply these methods to your won web site. Another Russian Sophie wrote in French: Sophie Rostopchine , a daughter of the Russian general who burned Moscow. One of those books is Les malheurs de Sophie.
The French Wipe sez:. Anyway, the diagram appears to associate the encyclopedia with some topics on which it contains articles, some topics mentioned in those articles, and some of the authors of the articles. There are too little associations, or too many, depending on how you look at it. An ontology applied to an ontology reveals Too Much Information. Describing descriptions multiplies the descriptions, but provides no explanations. This comment is an example of that.
They are mostly comedic, but her actual childhood was quite miserable, with a very harsh, puritanical mother, a religious fanatic who kept her children hungry and cold for lack of proper food, clothing and heat in the house, even though this upper-class family could well afford a more than decent standard of living.
She adored her father, but he was absent most of the time. These are knotty matters that one ought not set at naught.
We have Hume to thank for this unsatisfactory state of affairs. Mayo, where my people come from, and in Connaught generally. The false equivalence to Eugenius, Eugene is more of a Munster notion. So here I am, born from the yew, living in the New Place of the Yews. New Place of the Yews Your comment sent me back to Wiki for the origin of York , whith I think was discussed here a few years ago. Trees tend to be picky about where they grow, and nobody would settle in a place infested with wild boars. There is a cognate in French Evreux for which the French article only refers to the Eburovices Gaulish tribe, without further details, while the English article translates this name as Those who overcome by the yew , with a question mark.
On the other hand, the French article on Aulerques Eburovices the Aulerques , Lat Aulerci being a larger group seems to be the source for the assertion, since yew wood has been used in many cultures for making bows of superior quality. But the existence of a Gaulish verb based on the root [wik] seems to be inferred from the attested tribal names ending in the suffix -vices , so this etymology might be considered doubtful.
There is also the name Evremont as in the French abbey of Saint-Evremont. Of course, neither the English nor the Norse name makes any sense. It would be interesting to know if the modern Celtic names of York are inherited or are modern linguistically-informed reconstructions. Not unless it was subject to irregular shortening, like bread or read preterite.
My impression is that long vowels before consonant clusters tend to get shortened as in Christmas? Mayo, where my people come from, and in Connaught generally…So here I am, born from the yew, living in the New Place of the Yews. And not to be a spoilsport but the Big Apple was no more named New York for a tree than it was named New Orange for a fruit. It is curious that the second element which had previously changed with each change of rule did not revert to Orange after a scion of that house had ousted the erstwhile Duke of York from the throne of the then ruling power.
The decisive battle in that war of Orange and Apple was fought in your ancestral Connaught, at Aughrim. My father and grandfather were both raconteurs, and surely not above sacrificing a fact to an antithesis, and of course their view of Irish was little better than fragmentary: But when she tries to discuss her newly acquired knowledge with someone less Anglophone and less knowledgeable, she will have to either invent a new vocabulary or start checking relevant Russian literature, if available, for the right terms. In addition, Russian translations, even if broadly accepted, could still be extremely inelegant.
All in all, Russian remains underequipped as it were for certain types of discussions. I am pretty sure they say it in English, with heavy Russian accent and a lots of stress. The result ends up sounding very similar to certain Russian expletive…. SFReader — that much is true, i. Oh, German has reached that point now.
Embedded in lines of spam content: Just what I need to hear! It jumped out at me, just like typos and such do. Sure, I was just cracking wise. Or probably any educated milieu in the German world. Vanya — your examples are of gratuitous substitution so to say. Not having the right word, or having a train wreck of an expression for a notion is different. I was only just getting around to adopting it. I would argue it is a culturally specific cliche that Germans who have been exposed to significant amounts of American business jargon find very difficult to translate into their native language.
I recall one social gathering where it felt like some people were using it in every second sentence. Obviously she could read, since she had actually read the word! It was the situation which was a joke on her! If we had spoken Spanish rather than French, she might have started to read earlier, but because of the vagaries of the centuries-old French spelling which caused her to make a mistake she probably thought there was no point in her trying to read at least in French , and she did not try again for several years.
Since she was so young, I did not try to push her or teach her, and when later she decided she wanted to read Tintin she figured out French spelling on her own. So now I know who Yagoda is. The first result was a Russian security chief. For some reason, I missed replying with the obvious answer, namely that while the Prince of Orange became King of England and a fortiori King of New-York , he had only a life interest: With the available evidence, the following reconstruction can be attempted.
There are no phenotypical characteristics that link hogweed Welsh to yew Irish. All this leads to the following scenario. This may be preserved in Continental Celtic on the evidence of the Germanic loan eber-boum, Eber-esche. Danewort Sambucus ebulus is a close cognate of the shrubby elder Sambucus nigra , from which it differs by being a herbaceous perennial, which dies down every winter, and in that it forms dense stands.
Incidentally, those characteristics as well as the presence of divided, pinnate leaves and its preferred habitat of fertile, moist soils link it particularly with hogweed Welsh efwr. The only link that comes to mind is the edible fruits. About the plant, I think yew must be the most likely, as a source of a then very useful wood unmatched by that of any other tree or shrub. The other plants, even the ones with berries, are not so unique in their usefulness.
It is used for cabinetmaking and other fine woodworking, as it is very resistant to both decay and mechanical damage. At least ten yew trees in the U. Certain anti-cancer drugs taxols are also made from the bark of the Pacific yew. Yew hedges are extremely dense and provide shelter for small animals and birds. In addition, it is the characteristic churchyard tree of the British Isles. As for the churchyard, I suppose that the yew is the Northern equivalent of the Mediterranean cypress.
All parts of the yew are very toxic, but toxicity of the Mediterranean cypress is low to non-existent on the other hand its pollen is highly allergenic, as I know to my cost: I never met Pierre Potier, who discovered the anti-cancer value of taxols, but my wife met him several times at meetings. He was a strange man in some respects: The reason quoted by No. Wikipedia is that the inner bark of the yew could be used for bast fibre ropes, as was that of the lime. Since the yew is not native to Norway, this resource must have been very limited.
I would suggest similar uses in gardening and also perhaps the shape of the flowers and early fruits. All but the red arils or false fruit , and even then the seed inside is toxic and must be removed. Birds do eat the arils and typically pass the unchanged seed out in their droppings. Surely there would not be just a single yew growing there. In any case, construction of the fortress must have pretty well wrecked the island as it was before. The Pacific yew was getting seriously endangered. It occurred to me that as far as I knew there was no such thing in existence as a book of Irish ghost stories.
Books on Irish fairy and folk-lore there were in abundance —some of which could easily be spared — but there was no book of ghosts. And so I determined to supply this sad omission. Where was I to get them from? For myself I knew none worth publishing, nor had I ever had any strange experiences, while I feared that my friends and acquaintances were in much the same predicament.
Suddenly a brilliant thought struck me. I wrote out a letter, stating exactly what I wanted, and what I did not want, and requesting the readers of it either to forward me ghost stories, or else to put me in the way of getting them: I confess I was a little doubtful as to the result of my experiment, and wondered what response the people of Ireland would make to a letter which might place a considerable amount of trouble on their shoulders. My mind was speedily set at rest.
On October 30, the first answers reached me. Within a fortnight I had sufficient material to make a book; within a month I had so much material that I could pick and choose—and more was promised. I should like to take the opportunity of thanking all those ladies and gentlemen throughout the length and breadth of Ireland, the majority of whom were utter strangers to me, who went to the trouble of sitting down and writing out page after page of stories.
I cannot forget their kindness, and I am only sorry that I could not make use of more of the matter that was sent to me. As one would expect, this material varied in value and extent. Some persons contributed incidents, of little use by themselves, but which worked in as helpful illustrations, while others forwarded budgets of stories, long and short.
There is something very eerie in being shut up within the four walls of a house with a ghost. The poor human being is placed at such a disadvantage. If we know that a gateway, or road, or field has the reputation of being haunted, we can in nearly every case make a detour, and so avoid the unpleasant locality. But the presence of a ghost in a house creates a very different state of affairs. It appears and disappears at its own sweet will, with a total disregard for our feelings: There is also something so natural, and at the same time so unnatural, in seeing a door open when we know that no human hand rests on the knob, or in hearing the sound of footsteps, light or heavy, and feeling that it cannot be attributed to the feet of mortal man or woman.
Or perhaps a form appears in a room, standing, sitting, or walking—in fact, situated in its three dimensions apparently as an ordinary being of flesh and blood, until it proves its unearthly nature by vanishing before our astonished eyes. Or perhaps we are asleep in bed. The room is shrouded in darkness, and our recumbent attitude, together with the weight of bed-clothes, hampers our movements and probably makes us more cowardly.
A man will meet pain or danger boldly if he be standing upright—occupying that erect position which is his as Lord of Creation; but his courage does not well so high if he be supine. We are awakened suddenly by the feel that some superhuman Presence is in the room. We are transfixed with terror, we cannot find either the bell-rope or the matches, while we dare not leap out of bed and make a rush for the door lest we should encounter we know not what. In an agony of fear, we feel it moving towards us; it approaches closer, and yet closer, to the bed, and—for what may or may not then happen we must refer our readers to the pages of this book.
But the sceptical reader will say: All these alleged strange happenings are due to a vivid imagination, or else to rats and mice. This simple solution has been put forward so often that it should infallibly have solved the problem long ago. But will such a reader explain how it is that the noise made by rats and mice can resemble slow, heavy footsteps, or else take the form of a human being seen by several persons; or how our imagination can cause doors to open and shut, or else create a conglomeration of noises which, physically, would be beyond the power of ordinary individuals to reproduce?
Whatever may be the ultimate explanation, we feel that there is a great deal in the words quoted by Professor Barrett: We must now turn to the subject of this chapter. Kelly, a lady well known in musical circles in Dublin, sends as her own personal experience the following tale of a most quiet haunting, in which the spectral charwoman! On that occasion I was standing in the kitchen of my house in — Square, when a woman, whom I was afterwards to see many times, walked down the stairs into the room. Having heard the footsteps outside, I was not in the least perturbed, but turned to look who it was, and found myself looking at a tall, stout, elderly woman, wearing a bonnet and old-fashioned mantle.
She had grey hair, and a benign and amiable expression. We stood gazing at each other while one could count twenty. At first I was not at all frightened, but gradually as I stood looking at her an uncomfortable feeling, increasing to terror, came over me. This caused me to retreat farther and farther back, until I had my back against the wall, and then the apparition slowly faded. These occasions numbered twelve or fifteen, and I have seen her in every room in the house, and at every hour of the day, during a period of about ten years. The last time she appeared was ten years ago.
My husband and I had just returned from a concert at which he had been singing, and we sat for some time over supper, talking about the events of the evening. When at last I rose to leave the room, and opened the dining-room door, I found my old lady standing on the mat outside with her head bent towards the door in the attitude of listening. I called out loudly, and my husband rushed to my side. That was the last time I have seen her.
For instance, she showed her disapproval of any stranger coming to sleep by turning the chairs face downwards on the floor in the room they were to occupy. I have nearly broken my bones over one of the bedroom chairs which was turned down on the floor. The whole family have been disturbed by a peculiar knocking which occurred in various rooms in the house, frequently on the door or wall, but sometimes on the furniture, quite close to where we had been sitting.
This was evidently loud enough to be heard in the next house, for our next-door neighbour once asked my husband why he selected such curious hours for hanging his pictures. Another strange and fairly frequent occurrence was the following. I had got a set of skunk furs which I fancied had an unpleasant odour, as this fur sometimes has; and at night I used to take it from my wardrobe and lay it on a chair in the drawing-room, which was next my bedroom. The first time that I did this, on going to the drawing-room I found, to my surprise, my muff in one corner and my stole in another.
Not for a moment suspecting a supernatural agent, I asked my servant about it, and she assured me that she had not been in the room that morning. Whereupon I determined to test the matter, which I did by putting in the furs late at night, and taking care that I was the first to enter the room in the morning. I invariably found that they had been disturbed. The following strange and pathetic incident occurred in a well-known Square in the north side of the city. In or about a hundred years ago a young officer was ordered to Dublin, and took a house there for himself and his family. He sent on his wife and two children, intending to join them in the course of a few days.
When the latter and the nurse arrived, they found only the old charwoman in the house, and she left shortly after their arrival. Finding that something was needed, the nurse went out to purchase it. On her return she asked the mother were the children all right, as she had seen two ghostly forms flit past her on the door-step! The mother answered that she believed they were, but on going up to the nursery they found both the children with their throats cut.
The murderer was never brought to justice, and no motive was ever discovered for the crime. The unfortunate mother went mad, and it is said that an eerie feeling still clings to the house, while two little heads are sometimes seen at the window of the room where the deed was committed. A most weird experience fell to the lot of Major Macgregor, and was contributed by him to Real Ghost Stories, the celebrated Christmas number of the Review of Reviews.
In January the husband of my relative fell ill. I sat up with him for several nights, and at last, as he seemed better, I went to bed, and directed the footman to call me if anything went wrong. I soon fell asleep, but some time after was awakened by a push on the left shoulder. I then tried to pull the person towards me, but could not do so. I was so astounded that I let the hand go, and just then the clock struck two.
Including the mistress of the house, there were five females in the establishment, and I can assert that the hand belonged to none of them. One lady got a slap in the face from some invisible hand, and when she lit her candle she saw as if something opaque fell or jumped off the bed.
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A general officer, a brother of the lady, slept there two nights, but preferred going to a hotel to remaining the third night. He never would say what he heard or saw, but always said the room was uncanny. I slept for months in the room afterwards, and was never in the least disturbed. A truly terrifying sight was witnessed by a clergyman in a school-house a good many years ago.
This cleric was curate of a Dublin parish, but resided with his parents some distance out of town in the direction of Malahide. It not infrequently happened that he had to hold meetings in the evenings, and on such occasions, as his home was so far away, and as the modern convenience of tramcars was not then known, he used to sleep in the schoolroom, a large bare room, where the meetings were held. He had made a sleeping-apartment for himself by placing a pole across one end of the room, on which he had rigged up two curtains which, when drawn together, met in the middle.
One night he had been holding some meeting, and when everybody had left he locked up the empty schoolhouse, and went to bed. It was a bright moonlight night, and every object could be seen perfectly clearly. Scarcely had he got into bed when he became conscious of some invisible presence. Then he saw the curtains agitated at one end, as if hands were grasping them on the outside. In an agony of terror he watched these hands groping along outside the curtains till they reached the middle. The curtains were then drawn a little apart, and a Face peered in—an awful, evil Face, with an expression of wickedness and hate upon it which no words could describe.
It looked at him for a few moments, then drew back again, and the curtains closed. The clergyman had sufficient courage left to leap out of bed and make a thorough examination of the room, but, as he expected, he found no one. He dressed himself as quickly as possible, walked home, and never again slept a night in that schoolroom. The following tale, sent by Mr. My way lay through a certain street in which stood a very dismal semi-detached house, which, I might say, was closed up regularly about every six months.
This went on for eight or nine years, and I often wondered what was the reason. On inquiring one day from a friend, I was told that it had the reputation of being haunted. When we had transacted our business she informed me that she was about to leave. Knowing the reputation of the house, and being desirous of investigating a ghost-story, I asked her if she would give me the history of the house as far as she knew it, which she very kindly did as follows:. He lived in it for a short time, when he suddenly went mad, and had to be put in an asylum. Upon this his agents let the house to a lady.
Apparently nothing unusual happened for some time, but a few months later, as she went down one morning to a room behind the kitchen, she found the cook hanging by a rope attached to a hook in the ceiling. After the inquest the lady gave up the house.
He told her to go in and open the hall door and let him in, but she refused to enter the room again. He forced open the door and succeeded in dragging the woman back into the room, only to find she had gone mad. They do not give any definite reason as to why they are leaving; they are careful to state that it is not because they have any fault to find with me or my domestic arrangements, but they merely say they do not like the rooms! The rooms themselves, as you can see, are good, spacious, and well lighted.
I have had all classes of professional men; one of the last was a barrister, and he said that he had no fault to find except that he did not like the rooms! I myself do not believe in ghosts, and I have never seen anything strange here or elsewhere; and if I had known the house had the reputation of being haunted, I would never have rented it. He is said to frequent the inner gallery, which contains what was formerly his own private library: However, he always leaves things in perfect order.
As a punishment for his lack of vigilance, the Archbishop is said to be condemned to hunt for the note until he find it—hence the ghost. The ghost of a deceased Canon was seen in one of the Dublin cathedrals by several. It was during the Sunday morning service in the cathedral that I saw my friend, who had been dead for two years, sitting inside the communion-rails. I was so much astonished at the flesh-and blood appearance of the figure that I took off my glasses and wiped them with my handkerchief, at the same time looking away from him down the church.
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On looking back again he was still there, and continued to sit there for about ten or twelve minutes, after which he faded away. I remarked a change in his personal appearance, which was, that his beard was longer and whiter than when I had known him—in fact, such a change as would have occurred in life in the space of two years. Having told my husband of the occurrence on our way home, he remembered having heard some talk of an appearance of this clergyman in the cathedral since his death. She informed him that she had, and that he had also been seen by one of the sextons in the cathedral.
I mention this because in describing his personal appearance she had remarked the same change as I had with regard to the beard. Some years ago a family had very uncanny experiences in a house in Rathgar, and subsequently in another in Rathmines. These were communicated by one of the young ladies to Mrs. Wilkins, who published them in the Journal of the American S.
The Rathgar house had a basement passage leading to a door into the yard, and along this passage her mother and the children used to hear dragging, limping steps, and the latch of the door rattling, but no one could ever be found when search was made. The house-bells were old and all in a row, and on one occasion they all rang, apparently of their own accord. The lady narrator used to sleep in the back drawing room, and always when the light was put out she heard strange noises, as if some one was going round the room rubbing paper along the wall, while she often had the feeling that a person was standing beside her bed.
A cousin, who was a nurse, once slept with her, and also noticed these strange noises. On one occasion this room was given up to a very matter-of-fact young man to sleep in, and next morning he said that the room was very strange, with queer noises in it. Her mother also had an extraordinary experience in the same house. But her mother had been upstairs, and no one was in the front room.
The experiences in the Rathmines house were of a similar auditory nature, i. Occasionally it happens that ghosts inspire a law-suit. In the seventeenth century they were to be found actively urging the adoption of legal proceedings, but in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries they play a more passive part. A case about a haunted house took place in Dublin in the year , in which the ghost may be said to have won. Witnesses proved that every night, from August to January , stones were thrown at the windows and doors, and extraordinary and inexplicable occurrences constantly took place.
Waldron, wife of the plaintiff, swore that one night she saw one of the panes of glass of a certain window cut through with a diamond, and a white hand inserted through the hole. She at once caught up a bill-hook and aimed a blow at the hand, cutting off one of the fingers. This finger could not be found, nor were any traces of blood seen. A servant of hers was sorely persecuted by noises and the sound of footsteps. Waldron, with the aid of detectives and policemen, endeavoured to find out the cause, but with no success.
The witnesses in the case were closely cross-examined, but without shaking their testimony. The facts appeared to be proved, so the jury found for Kiernan, the defendant.
At least twenty persons had testified on oath to the fact that the house had been known to have been haunted. Before leaving the city and its immediate surroundings, we must relate the story of an extraordinary ghost, somewhat lacking in good manners, yet not without a certain distorted sense of humour. Absolutely incredible though the tale may seem, yet it comes on very good authority.
It was related to our informant, Mr. In the story the relationship of the different persons seems a little involved, but it would appear that the initial A belongs to the surname both of Mrs. He disclosed this latter to Mr. Corney made his presence manifest to the A— family shortly after they had gone to reside in Street in the following manner.
A— had sprained his knee badly, and had to use a crutch, which at night was left at the head of his bed. One night his wife heard some one walking on the lobby, thump, thump, thump, as if imitating Mr. She struck a match to see if the crutch had been removed from the head of the bed, but it was still there. From that on Corney commenced to talk, and he spoke every day from his usual habitat, the coal-cellar off the kitchen. His voice sounded as if it came out of an empty barrel. He was very troublesome, and continually played practical jokes on the servants, who, as might be expected, were in terror of their lives of him; so much so that Mrs.
A— could hardly induce them to stay with her. They used to sleep in a press-bed in the kitchen, and in order to get away from Corney, they asked for a room at the top of the house, which was given to them. Accordingly the press-bed was moved up there. I am not confined to any particular part of this house. Corney was continually tampering with the doors, and straining locks and keys, He only manifested himself in material form to two persons; to —, who died with the fright, and to Mr.
The latter described him to his mother as a naked man, with a curl on his forehead, and a skin like a clothes-horse! One day a servant was preparing fish for dinner. She laid it on the kitchen table while she went elsewhere for something she wanted. When she returned the fish had disappeared. She thereupon began to cry, fearing she would be accused of making away with it. Relatives from the country used to bring presents of vegetables, and these were often hung up by Corney like Christmas decorations round the kitchen.
There was one particular press in the kitchen he would not allow anything into. He would throw it out again. A crock with meat in pickle was put into it, and a fish placed on the cover of the crock. He threw the fish out. Silver teaspoons were missing, and no account of them could be got until Mrs. A— asked Corney to confess if he had done anything with them. Subsequently that night five or six distinct voices were heard, and next morning the water in the tank was as black as ink, and not alone that, but the bread and butter in the pantry were streaked with the marks of sooty fingers.
A clergyman in the locality, having heard of the doings of Corney, called to investigate the matter. He was advised by Mrs. A— to keep quiet, and not to reveal his identity, as being the best chance of hearing Corney speak. He waited a long time, and as the capricious Corney remained silent, he left at length.
I was a bad man, and I died the death. Corney constantly joined in any conversation carried on by the people of the house. One could never tell when a voice from the coal-cellar would erupt into the dialogue. He had his likes and dislikes: Next morning the poker was found broken in two. They asked him if they changed house would he trouble them.
A— appealed to him to keep quiet, and not to injure people who had never injured him. A—, you will be all right now, for I see a lady in black coming up the street to this house, and she will buy it. Dublin, is a house, occupied at present, or up to very recently, by a private family; it was formerly a monastery, and there are said to be secret passages in it.
Once a servant ironing in the kitchen saw the figure of a nun approach the kitchen window and look in.
Our informant was also told by a friend now dead , who had it from the lady of the house, that once night falls, no doors can be kept closed. If anyone shuts them, almost immediately they are flung open again with the greatest violence and apparent anger. If left open there is no trouble or noise, but light footsteps are heard, and there is a vague feeling of people passing to and fro.
The persons inhabiting the house are matter-of-fact, unimaginative people, who speak of this as if it were an everyday affair. Truly a most philosophical attitude to adopt! A haunted house in Kingstown, Co. Dublin, was investigated by Professor W. Barrett and Professor Henry Sidgwick. The story is singularly well attested as one might expect from its being inserted in the pages of the Proceedings S. The house in which the following occurrences took place is described as being a very old one, with unusually thick walls. The lady saw her strange visitant in her bedroom.
Opening my eyes now one morning, I saw right before me this occurred in July the figure of a woman, stooping down and apparently looking at me. Her head and shoulders were wrapped in a common woollen shawl; her arms were folded, and they were also wrapped, as if for warmth, in the shawl. I looked at her in my horror, and dared not cry out lest I might move the awful thing to speech or action.
Behind her head I saw the window and the growing dawn, the looking-glass upon the toilet-table, and the furniture in that part of the room. After what may have been only seconds—of the duration of this vision I cannot judge—she raised herself and went backwards towards the window, stood at the toilet-table, and gradually vanished. I mean she grew by degrees transparent, and that through the shawl and the grey dress she wore I saw the white muslin of the table-cover again, and at last saw that only in the place where she had stood.
The only other occupants of the house at the time were her brother and the servant, to neither of whom did she make any mention of the circumstance, fearing that the former would laugh at her, and the latter give notice. Exactly a fortnight later, when sitting at breakfast, she noticed that her brother seemed out of sorts, and did not eat. I saw it early this morning, just as distinctly as I see you. Whereupon she informed him of what she herself had seen a fortnight previously. The eldest child, a boy of about four or five years, asked for a drink, and his mother went to fetch it, desiring him to remain in the dining-room until her return.
So agitated was he, that she took him by the hand and went upstairs to search, but no one was to be found, though he still maintained that a woman went upstairs. A friend of the family subsequently told them that a woman had been killed in the house many years previously, and that it was reported to be haunted. This division we have followed, except that we have included the whole of the counties of West Meath and Galway in the northern portion.
We had hoped originally to have had four chapters on Haunted Houses, one for each of the four provinces, but, for lack of material from Connaught, we have been forced to adopt the plan on which Chapters I—III are arranged.
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Roscommon, sends the following: Westmeath, a very old mansion since pulled down, was purchased by my grandfather for his son, my father. The latter had only been living in it for a few days when knocking commenced at the hall door. Naturally he thought it was someone playing tricks, or endeavouring to frighten him away.
One night he had the lobby window open directly over the door. The knocking commenced, and he looked out: Another night he sat up expecting his brother, but as the latter did not come he went to bed. Finally the knocking became so loud and insistent that he felt sure his brother must have arrived. He went downstairs and opened the door, but no one was there. Still convinced that his brother was there and had gone round to the yard to put up his horse, he went out; but scarcely had he gone twenty yards from the door when the knocking recommenced behind his back.
On turning round he could see no one. All this time he did not mention the strange occurrence to anyone. To his surprise he found the herd out feeding the cattle. My father asked him why he was up so early. He replied that he could not sleep.
My father was advised to take no notice of it, for it would go as it came, though at this time it was continuous and very loud; and so it did. The country people said it was the late resident who could not rest. A former rector was staying the night with us, and as the evening wore on we commenced to tell ghost-stories.
He related some remarkable experiences, and as we were talking the drawing-room door suddenly opened as wide as possible, and then slowly closed again. It was a calm night, and at any rate it was a heavy double door which never flies open however strong the wind may be blowing. The effect on the latter was most marked. He was a big, strong, jovial man and a good athlete, but when he saw the door open he quivered like an aspen leaf. A strange story of a haunting, in which nothing was seen, but in which the same noises were heard by different people, is sent by one of the percipients, who does not wish to have her name disclosed.
Sometimes it sounded as if they were walking on paving-stones, while at other times I had the impression that they were going round a large space, and as if someone was using a whip on them. I heard neighing, and champing of bits, and so formed the impression that they were carriage horses. I did not mind it much at first, as I thought the stables must be near that part of the house. After hearing these noises several times I began to get curious, so one morning I made a tour of the place.
I found that the side of the house I occupied overlooked a neglected garden, which was mostly used for drying clothes. I also discovered that the stables were right at the back of the house, and so it would be impossible for me to hear any noises in that quarter; at any rate there was only one farm horse left, and this was securely fastened up every night. Also there were no cobble-stones round the yard.
I mentioned what I had heard to the people of the house, but as they would give me no satisfactory reply I passed it over. I did not hear these noises every night. It sounded as if the dish-covers were being taken off the wall and dashed violently on the flagged floor. At length I got up and opened the door of my bedroom, and just as I did so an appalling crash resounded through the house. I waited to see if there was any light to be seen, or footstep to be heard, but nobody was stirring.
There was only one servant in the house, the other persons being my host, his wife, and a baby, who had all retired early. Next morning I described the noises in the kitchen to the servant, and she said she had often heard them. I then told her about the tramping of horses: I asked her was there any explanation; she said No, except that a story was told of a gentleman who had lived there some years ago, and was very much addicted to racing and gambling, and that he was shot one night in that house.
For the remainder of my visit I was removed to another part of the house, and I heard no more noises. A house in the North of Ireland, near that locality which is eternally famous as having furnished the material for the last trial for witchcraft in the country, is said to be haunted, the reason being that it is built on the site of a disused and very ancient graveyard. It is said that when some repairs were being carried out nine human skulls were unearthed.
It would be interesting to ascertain how many houses in Ireland are traditionally said to be built on such unpleasant sites, and if they all bear the reputation of being haunted. The present writer knows of one, in the South, which is so situated and this is supported, to a certain extent, by documentary evidence from the thirteenth century down and which in consequence has an uncanny reputation. But concerning the above house it has been found almost impossible to get any information. It is said that strange noises were frequently heard there, which sometimes seemed as if cartloads of stones were being run down one of the gables.
On one occasion an inmate of the house lay dying upstairs. A friend went up to see the sick person, and on proceeding to pass through the bedroom door was pressed and jostled as if by some unseen person hurriedly leaving the room. On entering, it was found that the sick person had just passed away. An account of a most unpleasant haunting is contributed by Mr. In the year a ghost made its presence manifest in the house of a Mr.
In the daytime it resided in the chimney, but at night it left its quarters and subjected the family to considerable annoyance. During the day they could cook nothing, as showers of soot would be sent down the chimney on top of every pot and pan that was placed on the fire. At night the various members of the family would be dragged out of bed by the hair, and pulled around the house.
When anyone ventured to light a lamp it would immediately be put out, while chairs and tables would be sent dancing round the room. At last matters reached such a pitch that the family found it impossible to remain any longer in the house. The night before they left Mrs. M— was severely handled, and her boots left facing the door as a gentle hint for her to be off. Before they departed some of the neighbours went to the house, saw the ghost, and even described to Mr. Thompson what they had seen.
The station commenced after sunset, and everything in the house had to be uncovered, lest the evil spirit should find any resting-place. A free passage was left out of the door into the street, where many people were kneeling. From this time the ghost gave no further trouble. The same gentleman also sends an account of a haunted shop in which members of his family had some very unpleasant experiences. S— to whom it had been left by will.
My sister was put in charge of the business, and she slept on the premises at night, but she was not there by herself very long until she found things amiss. The third night matters were made so unpleasant for her that she had to get up out of bed more dead than alive, and go across the street to Mrs. M—, the servant at the R. She stated that as she lay in bed, half awake and half asleep, she saw a man enter the room, who immediately seized her by the throat and well-nigh choked her.
She also said that she heard noises as if every bottle and glass in the shop was smashed to atoms, yet in the morning everything would be found intact. My brother was in charge of the shop one day, as my sister had to go to Belturbet to do some Christmas shopping. He expected her to return to the shop that night, but as she did not do so he was preparing to go to bed about 1 A.
The light was extinguished, and the tables and chairs commenced to dance about the floor, and some of them struck him on the shins. Upon this he left the house, declaring that he had seen the Devil! At any rate the present occupants, who follow a different avocation, do not appear to be troubled. Ghosts are no respecters of persons or places, and take up their quarters where they are least expected. One can hardly imagine them entering a R. The following personal experiences are contributed by an ex-R.
It was a three-storey house, with large airy apartments and splendid accommodation. This particular night I was on guard. After the constables had retired to their quarters I took my palliasse downstairs to the day-room, and laid it on two forms alongside two six-foot tables which were placed end to end in the centre of the room.
Scarcely had I commenced to read when I felt as if I was being pushed off the bed. At first I thought I must have fallen asleep, so to make sure, I got up, took a few turns around the room, and then deliberately lay down again and took up my book. Scarcely had I done so, when the same thing happened, and, though I resisted with all my strength, I was finally landed on the floor.
My bed was close to the table, and the pushing came from that side, so that if anyone was playing a trick on me they could not do so without being under the table: I looked, but there was no visible presence there. I felt shaky, but changed my couch to another part of the room, and had no further unpleasant experience.
Ghosts in Chinese culture
It appears he fell asleep, and suddenly awoke to find himself on the floor, and a body rolling over him. Several men volunteered to go downstairs with him, but he absolutely refused to leave the dormitory, and stayed there till morning. Nor would he even remain downstairs at night without having a comrade with him. It ended in his applying for an exchange of stations. There was a good fire on, and it looked so comfortable that I remained toasting my toes on the hob, and enjoying my pipe. The lock-up was a lean-to one-storey building off the kitchen, and was divided into two cells, one opening into the kitchen, the other into that cell.
I was smoking away quietly when I suddenly heard inside the lock-up a dull, heavy thud, just like the noise a drunken man would make by crashing down on all-fours. However as I heard no other sound I decided I would tell the guard in order that he might look after him. As I took my candle from the table I happened to glance at the lock-up, and, to my surprise, I saw that the outer door was open.
My curiosity being roused, I looked inside, to find the inner door also open. There was nothing in either cell, except the two empty plank-beds, and these were immovable as they were firmly fixed to the walls. I betook myself to my bedroom much quicker than I was in the habit of doing. It was the last obstacle removed, and in the meantime workmen came from all points of the compass. One day a powerful navvy was brought into the barrack a total collapse from drink, and absolutely helpless.
After his neckwear was loosened he was carried to the lock-up and laid on the plank-bed, the guard being instructed to visit him periodically, lest he should smother. He was scarcely half an hour there—this was in the early evening—when the most unmerciful screaming brought all hands to the lock-up, to find the erstwhile helpless man standing on the plank-bed, and grappling with a, to us, invisible foe. We took him out, and he maintained that a man had tried to choke him, and was still there when we came to his relief.
The strange thing was, that he was shivering with fright, and perfectly sober, though in the ordinary course of events he would not be in that condition for at least seven or eight hours. The story spread like wildfire through the town, but the inhabitants were not in the least surprised, and one old man told us that many strange things happened in that house long before it became a police-barrack.
A lady, who requests that her name be suppressed, relates a strange sight seen by her sister in Galway. One afternoon he was out, and she was lying on a sofa in the drawing-room, when suddenly from behind a screen where there was no door came a little old woman, with a small shawl over her head and shoulders, such as the country women used to wear. She had a most diabolical expression on her face. She seized the lady by the hand, and said: The house was an old one, and many stories were rife amongst the people about it, the one most to the point being that the apparition of an old woman, who was supposed to have poisoned someone, used to be seen therein.
Needless to say, the lady in question never again sat by herself in the drawing-room. Two stories are told about haunted houses at Drogheda, the one by A. Lee in Sights and Shadows p. As both appear to be placed at the same date, i. The reader, if he wishes, can test the matter for himself. They took possession in due course, but after a very few days they became aware of the presence of a most unpleasant supernatural lodger. One night, as the tailor and his wife were preparing to retire, they were terrified at seeing the foot of some invisible person kick the candlestick off the table, and so quench the candle.
Although it was a very dark night, and the shutters were closed, the man and his wife could see everything in the room just as well as if it were the middle of the day. While this was taking place on the first floor, a most frightful noise was going on overhead in the room where the children and their nurse were sleeping. The father immediately rushed upstairs, and found to his horror the floor all torn up, the furniture broken, and, worst of all, the children lying senseless and naked on the bed, and having the appearance of having been severely beaten.
As he was leaving the room with the children in his arms he suddenly remembered that he had not seen the nurse, so he turned back with the intention of bringing her downstairs, but could find her nowhere. Because of these occurrences they were legally advised to refuse to pay any rent. A Drogheda solicitor appeared for the tenants, who, having given evidence of the facts concerning the ghost in question, asked leave to support their sworn testimony by that of several other people.
This, however, was disallowed by the judge. It was admitted by the landlady that nothing on one side or the other had been said regarding the haunting when the house was let. A judgment was consequently entered for the landlady, although it had been shown indirectly that unquestionably the house had had the reputation of being haunted, and that previous tenants had been much inconvenienced.
This chapter may be concluded with two stories dealing with haunted rectories. The first, and mildest, of these is contributed by the present Dean of St. Monaghan, where he used to preach on special occasions. The rector and his daughters told the Dean that they had often seen in that house the apparition of an old woman dressed in a drab cape, while they frequently heard noises.
On one evening the rector was in the kitchen together with the cook and the coachman. All three heard noises in the pantry as if vessels were being moved. Presently they saw the old woman in the drab cape come out of the pantry and move up the stairs. The rector attempted to follow her, but the two servants held him tightly by the arms, and besought him not to do so. But hearing the children, who were in bed, screaming, he broke from the grip of the servants and rushed upstairs. The children said that they had been frightened by seeing a strange old woman coming into the room, but she was now gone.
The house had a single roof, and there was no way to or from the nursery except by the stairs. The rector stated that he took to praying that the old woman might have rest, and that it was now many years since she had been seen. The second of these, which is decidedly more complex and mystifying, refers to a rectory in Co. It is sent as the personal experience of one of the percipients, who does not wish to have his name disclosed.
From the first night that we came into the house most extraordinary noises have been heard. Sometimes they were inside the house, and seemed as if the furniture was being disturbed, and the fireirons knocked about, or at other times as if a dog was running up and down stairs. Sometimes they were external, and resembled tin buckets being dashed about the yard, or as if a herd of cattle was galloping up the drive before the windows.
These things would go on for six months, and then everything would be quiet for three months or so, when the noises would commence again. My dogs—a fox-terrier, a boar-hound, and a spaniel—would make a terrible din, and would bark at something in the hall we could not see, backing away from it all the time. She saw a tall man, with one arm, carrying a lamp, who walked out of the pantry into the kitchen, and then through the kitchen wall.
Another daughter saw the same man walk down one evening from the loft, and go into the harness-room. She told me, and I went out immediately, but could see nobody. Shortly after that my wife, who is very brave, heard a knock at the hall door in the dusk. Naturally thinking it was some friend, she opened the door, and there saw standing outside the self-same man. He simply looked at her, and walked through the wall into the house. She got such a shock that she could not speak for several hours, and was ill for some days.
That is eighteen months ago, and he has not been seen since, and it is six months since we heard any noises. He lived all his life within four hundred yards of this house, and used to tell me that seventy years ago the parsons came with bell, book, and candle to drive the ghosts out of the house. In English ghost-stories it is the parson who performs the exorcism successfully, while in Ireland such work is generally performed by the priest.
THE northern half of Ireland has not proved as prolific in stories of haunted houses as the southern portion: On a large farm near Portarlington there once lived a Mrs. In due time she died, and the property passed to the next-of-kin. As soon, however, as the funeral was over, the house was nightly disturbed by strange noises: The cups and saucers used to fall off the dresser, and all the pots and pans would rattle.
This went on for some time, till the people could stand it no longer, so they left the house and put in a herd and his family. The latter was driven away after he had been in the house a few weeks. This happened to several people, until at length a man named Mr. B— took the house. The noises went on as before until some one suggested getting the priest in. Accordingly the priest came, and held a service in the late Mrs.
When this was over, the door of the room was locked. After that the noises were not heard till one evening Mr. In spite of all his family could say or do, he burst open the door, and entered the room, but apparently saw nothing. That night pandemonium reigned in the house, the chairs were hurled about, the china was broken, and the most weird and uncanny sounds were heard. Next day the priest was sent for, the room again shut up, and nothing has happened from that day to this.
Another strange story comes from the same town. It continued for about ten minutes, during which time I was absolutely limp with fright. I then told her what I had heard; she listened to me, and then to comfort! They asked him in the morning how he had slept, and he replied that he was disturbed by a snoring in the room, but he supposed it was the cat. We liked the house, as it was conveniently and pleasantly situated, and we certainly never had a thought of ghosts or haunted houses, nor would my father allow any talk about such things in his presence.
We always declared that we would retire before the door opened, but we generally got so interested in our books that we would forget until we would hear the handle of the door turn, and see the door flung open. We tried in every way to account for this, but we could find no explanation, and there was no possibility of any human agent being at work. We had visitors staying with us, and in order to make room for them, my sister was asked to sleep in the parlour.
She consented without a thought of ghosts, and went to sleep quite happily; but during the night she was awakened by some one opening the door, walking across the room, and disturbing the fireirons. She, supposing it to be the servant, called her by name, but got no answer: There was a fire in the grate, but though she heard the footsteps, she could see no one. I went to my father and told him.
He asked in surprise who let him in, as the servant was out, and he himself had already locked, bolted, and chained the door an hour previously. None of us had let him in, and when my father went out to the hall the man had disappeared, and the door was as he had left it. The following weird incidents occurred, apparently in the Co. Kilkenny, to a Miss K. The house in which she experienced the following was really an old barrack, long disused, very old-fashioned, and surrounded with a high wall: The only inhabitants of this were Captain C— a retired officer in charge of the place , Mrs.
C—, three daughters, and two servants. They occupied the central part of the building, the mess-room being their drawing-room. This continued for about half an hour, when in the room underneath the kitchen I heard the fire being violently poked and raked for several minutes, and this was immediately followed by a most terrible and distressing cough of a man, very loud and violent. It seemed as if the exertion had brought on a paroxysm which he could not stop. In large houses in Co.
Consequently I wondered why it was necessary for Captain C— to get up in the middle of the night to stir it so violently. A few days later Miss B. I hoped no one but myself had heard it. I could have given worlds to have spoken to you last night, but dared not move or speak. In the following year, , Miss K. This time there were two other visitors there—a colonel and his wife. They occupied Miss B. Her strange experiences commenced again. Then suddenly the most violent coughing took place that I ever heard, which continued for some time, while the quick, heavy step continued its march.
At last the footsteps faded away in the distance, and I then recalled to mind the same coughing after exertion last year. The family looked very uncomfortable, and afterwards E. Some nights later the C—s gave a dance. When the guests had departed, Miss B. I went to bed, and fell asleep, but was not long so when I was suddenly awakened by the strange feeling that some one was in the room. I opened my eyes, and turned around, and saw on the window-sill in the moonlight a long, very thin, very dark figure bending over the Bible, and apparently earnestly scanning the page.
As if my movement disturbed the figure, it suddenly darted up, jumped off the window-ledge on to the washstand, then to the ground, and flitted quietly across the room to the table where my jewellery was. She thought it was some one trying to steal her jewellery, so waited till morning, but nothing was missing. In the morning she described to one of the daughters, G. Later on she was told that a colonel had cut his throat in that very room. Another military station, Charles Fort, near Kinsale, has long had the reputation of being haunted.
An account of this was sent to the Wide World Magazine Jan. Further information on the subject of the haunting is to be found in Dr. Charles Fort was erected in by the Duke of Ormonde. Shortly after the erection of the fort, a Colonel Warrender, a severe disciplinarian, was appointed its governor. On the evening of their wedding-day the bride and bridegroom were walking on the battlements, when she espied some flowers growing on the rocks beneath.
She expressed a wish for them, and a sentry posted close by volunteered to climb down for them, provided Sir Trevor took his place during his absence. Having obtained one, he commenced his descent; but the task proving longer than he expected, Sir Trevor fell asleep. Meantime the governor visited the sentries, as was his custom, and in the course of his rounds came to where Sir Trevor was asleep.
He challenged him, and on receiving no answer perceived that he was asleep, whereupon he drew a pistol and shot him through the heart. The body was brought in, and it was only then the governor realised what had happened. The bride, who appears to have gone indoors before the tragedy occurred, then learned the fate that befell her husband, and in her distraction, rushed from the house and flung herself over the battlements. In despair at the double tragedy, her father shot himself during the night. The above is from Dr. In the Wide World Magazine the legend differs slightly in details.
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