thrives. But one of them was drunk and forgot the proper words, and all they could do was to ban her into the form of a white owl. The owl used to sway like a pendulum in front of Lew House every night till, in an evil hour, my brother shot her. Since then she had not been seen. But here again we have the Celtic idea of metempsychosis.
There is a ballad sung by the English peasantry that has been picked up by collectors in Kent, Somerset and Devon. It is entitled At the Setting of the Sun, and begins thus:--
Come all you young fellows that carry a gun, Beware of late shooting when daylight is done; For 'tis little you reckon what hazards you run, I shot my true love at the setting of the sun.
In a shower of rain, as my darling did hie All under the bushes to keep herself dry, With her head in her apron, I thought her a swan, And I shot my true love at the setting of the sun.
In the Devonshire version of the story:--
In the night the fair maid as a white swan appears; She says, O my true love, quick, dry up your tears, I freely forgive you, I have Paradise won; I was shot by my true love at the setting of the sun.
But in the Somerset version the young man is had up before the magistrates and tried for his life.