Open main menu

Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 8, 1897.djvu/246

This page needs to be proofread.

2 22 Ghost Lights of the West Highlands.

travellers ; but if his victim be bold enough to brave him, he invites him to take advantage of the heat." ^ The High- land Will can also show some heat as well as " light and leading," if time and locality are sufficient to allow us to identify the active power for evil, in the following narrations, with Will-o'-the-Wisp : A lad courted a girl for some time, then took to another. Returning from a visit to No. 2 one night, accompanied only by his dog, at a lonely spot he noticed his dog " skulking up close to his heels, and imme- diately he felt something pass him like a waft of wind. His hair stood on end, and with the rising of his hair his cap fell off. The dog gave a growl and rushed off in the direction of a moss that was near by, and the lad heard a noise as if the dog were fighting with something. He could not see the dosf, and althouo^h he whistled it did not over- take him before he reached home, and he went to bed. Next morning the lad was sitting on a chair after getting up, and the dog came in with scarcely a hair on its skin. Havingr o-one round the chair on which the lad was sitting three times, it fell on the floor and expired. It was never known what the dog fought with in the moss."

Another story of similar injury to a dog is located near the Hanging Hill in Islay :

There was at one time a house at Cnoc-na-mnathan- tuiridh (the Hill of Lamenting Women), opposite the Hang- ing Hill, in which a bad man lived. He was constantly out at night, and his wife left alone in the house. One night, the husband being out as usual, the wife was sitting spinning. All at once two dogs of theirs, which were in the house with her, began to growl and rushed for the door. In those days there used to be a sort of inside door made of wicker work or heather woven on a frame. The dogs went right through the door, which happened to be of that

' Library ed. Arabian Nights, vol. i. p. 398. Tale of King Omar bin al- Nu'uman and his sons.