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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 8, 1897.djvu/256

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232 Ghost Lights of the West Highlands.

said he was, except to shave himself, and placing a chair on the floor, invited the man to sit down just while he would be shaving. When the man sat down, the smith wished his second wish, and there the man was stuck to the chair, and the chair to the floor. The smith kept him there till he promised him a year more on the former conditions. The old fellow, finding himself helpless, agreed, and so was again released, and left the smith with plenty of comfort for another year. When that year had come to an end, the little man returned as before, and commanded the smith to come away. Now the little old man was Satan, and the smith began to taunt him, saying, that if he had the power he professed to have he should be able to give some proof of it. The man, put on his mettle, asked what proof the smith would like to get. The smith said he would be pleased if he would turn himself into a piece of money, and at once the man changed himself into a sixpence. The smith made a dive at the sixpence, clutched it, and put it in his pocket, wished his third wish, and the sixpence stuck in his pocket and could not get out. It was not, however^ much peace the poor smith had, for the sixpence began to grow and grow and make a fearful noise to get out of his pocket, and the smith could get rest neither day nor night. He asked a number of his neighbours to come to his help to beat the sixpence into nothing. When the neighbours were gathered together, the smith laid the pocket on the anvil, and they began to hammer away at it till they had beaten it into nothing. In this way the smith got quit of his persecutor for the present ; still he did not prosper. One thing after another was against him. His family turned out undutiful, his wife neglected him and finally left him, his neighbours all avoided him, and at length he died a poor pitiful-looking object.

No one would go near him to bury him, and his body was thrown out like that of a dog. Where his body was thrown, there he lay for some time, but at last he thought he would