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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 8, 1897.djvu/269

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Ghost Lights of the West Highlands. 245

The distinction of the dreag from other fiery death-warn- ings is as here noted: "Unlike the dreag, the teine or lights occasionally seen before deaths and funerals are unsteady in their motion, are as a rule nearer the ground than the dreag, both going in the direction of the churchyard/'

Another solus taiss is thisĀ :

"A day or two, says Big Mary, dairymaid at L b

before Dugald's Angus died, I saw just between their house and the shore a big white light or lump of fire rising high in the sky. It came every step along the shore past the old castle, and it went every foot across the way of the church- yard, till the big rock of Lagan took it from my view."

The next two have been sent as " dreags." The reciter is a Glen Lyon woman, but it is noteworthy that she says simply that " a light " followed by the side of her mother in one case, and in the other hid itself in the bundle. There seems some connection between the light attaching itself to the woman in the first and the superstition mentioned by Martin: "To see a spark of fire fall upon one's arm or breast is a forerunner of a dead child to be seen in the arms of those persons, of which there are several fresh instances." ^ No doubt Martin's is a spark of fire from a burning stick or peat, but the underlying idea is probably the same. At any rate, that it should portend such an every-day occurrence as a live child in the arms, especially of a woman, would be a waste of the supernatural.

(i). Reciter Manse-servantĀ :

" Dur bha sinn ann Gleannliomhainn bha mo mhathair aeus mi fhein tisrhinn dhachaidh a Tomachaoran. Bha 'n oidhche againn, agus bha toil againn na bruachan aig an abhainn (no 'n loch) a' sheachnadh chionn tha iad uamhasach ged bhiodh an latha ann, agus dhir sinn an leacan rud beag, agfus thainiof solus beaar a lean ri taobh mo mhathar gus an do ruig sinn an tigh teann air [properly "teann air an tigh,"

' Martin's Western Islands, 2nd ed. p. 304.