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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 8, 1897.djvu/37

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of the Peasantry of Innishowen, 15

Crowing hens are a certain sign of coming evils. When such happens, the unfortunate biped is quickly decapitated. A cock crowing before twelve o'clock (midnight) foretells similar ills.

In using the kidneys of animals slaughtered for meat, one person must consume all (both kidneys) ; should two or more share in them, a lump of flesh of a like size would, it is believed, be certain to grow on some part of the body, generally the face.

Hare-lip is common. If a woman be enceinte on meeting a hare, the child on being born has very often the upper lip disfigured by a split resembling the nosemark on the animal referred to. It is called hare-shagh. Some get the doctor to perform an operation on the child.

Cows shot by the Fairies. — This does not happen to bulls or bullocks. The animal is all right in the morning or at night, and a few hours after is found to be all covered with little lumps, on pressing which with the fingers great pain is caused to the animal. The limbs, too, are partially para- lysed. Some old man in the district, who is said to have influence with the spirits (fairies), is sent for. He places three little lumps of gunpowder on the animal's back — one on the top of the shoulders, one in the middle of the back, and one near the tail. These he explodes with a match ; then a seton is put into the animal, or a red string tied round the tail. Some peculiar drink or mash is then given, and in a short time the animal is all right.

King's Evil [scrofula). — This is said to be cured by the touch of a seventh son, to be applied seven successive mornings before the sun rises, the patient to be fasting. No fee can be given or taken, or the cure fails.

Wens [warts). — These are removed by rubbing with the water found by chance in a hollow stone by the wayside. But the patient must not be on the search for such a stone.

Mumps. — Children suffering from mumps are cured by passing them three times back and forward under the belly