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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 4, 1893.djvu/329

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First-Footing in Aberdeenshire.

William, it was a regular practice for those starting upon an expedition of any kind to go by stealth the evening before, and nail up the door of the man who performed as district-hangman, and who was regarded as a most ill-omened first-foot. In some of the fishing villages of the coast I have heard of a boat being drawn up against the door of a churlish individual to prevent his getting out.

But generally speaking the belief in the first-foot has vanished, like Hans Breitmann's famous party, and "goned" away, like the lager beer, away to the Ewigkeit.