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Cley hill has a Devil legend attached to it. The Devil was travelling from Somerset carrying a huge sack of earth, with which he intended to bury the town of Devises. The people of the town had offended him in some way probably by converting to Christianity. Read More »
It has been suggested in Roby’s Traditions of Lancashire, that the Motte and Bailey Clitheroe Castle may date back to before 1086, being built by Roger de Poictou (also known as Roger Pictavensis). Roger was a supporter of King William I and was granted 398 Saxon Manors following the Norman invasion of 1066. Read More »
Cobs and knops were hobgoblins, much feared. They were originally demon horses, and it is clear that belief in them remained strong in Warwickshire, for in parts of the county on All Souls' Day (2nd November) those brave enough went out carrying a simulated horse's head covered with a sheet to frighten the timid.
[The Folklore Of Warwickshire (1976) by Roy Palmer]
Combe Sydenham is associated with a legendary story concerning Sir Francis Drake, and another historical figure, George Sydenham, who has also become the subject of folklore. Read More »
Every last Friday in July is the Common Riding in Langholm. The festival dates back to the 1700s when rights to common lands were awarded to the burgh of Langholm - although it takes place on the date of an earlier fair. These lands were marked out by ditches cairns and beacons, which originally fell to the responsibility of one man. Read More »
Tuberculosis has been known by various names throughout history, phthisis, scrofula, Pott's disease, white plague and of course, consumption. There are several cases throughout New England where a fear of the disease and the lack of medical knowledge to treat it, led to people seeking a supernatural explanation and a cure in old folklore. Read More »
In legend a curse was put upon the town and its entire people by a mermaid hundreds of years ago. She was found stranded on the rocks at low tide by local fishermen, who would not return her to the water no matter how much she begged. She cursed the town saying that the people would always be poor. The curse is now said to have run its course. Read More »
A large stone, close to the churchyard is said to have been thrown by the Devil from the Isle of May. It is possible that the stone was part of a sacred site here before the church. Read More »
“I went down to the Crossroads, fell down on my knees” Robert Johnson.
When Robert Johnson sang of the Crossroads down in the 1930’s Mississippi Delta, he was paying homage to a tradition that has existed in varied forms for centuries, and at the same time adding his own contribution to the wealth of folklore that exists around the crossing place of two highways. Read More »
Croydon Hill is the scene of a peculiar English Folktale, that may or may not have its root in real events. Whatever the truth of the tale the hill has a reputation of being haunted by unearthly howls, especially on dark and stormy nights, and here is the story to account for this unearthly manifestation: Read More »
A Cockatrice was supposedly killed here when the peat in which it was hiding were set on fire. It had, according to local tradition been found whilst still in its egg. A woman had got her hen to sit on the egg until it hatched. Unfortunately when it hatched it ate the hen's chicks then ran off. Read More »
There are many tales to explain the origin of the spectral wild hunt, this one is from the Parish of St Germans in Cornwall. It explains how a priest with low morals became a demon huntsman.
In the medieval period the priest of the parish of St Germans was called Dando. Dando was not a figure of priestly virtue but abused his powers to enjoy earthly delights. Read More »
According to ‘The Science of Fairy Tales’ (1891) by Edwin Sidney Hartland ‘A Danish tradition tells of a woman who was taken by an elf on Christmas Eve down into the earth to attend his wife. Read More »
Before Picton Street in Merthyr Tydfil was replaced by Caedraw Road, you could find the Black Lion Inn (58 Picton Street), and according to the following story which appeared in British Goblins (1881) by Wirt Sykes, two of its drunken customers attempted to summon the Devil which appeared to them in the shape of a gosling. 'These men were one night drinking together at the Black Lion Inn, when Read More »
According to British Goblins (1881) by Wirt Sykes; 'To William Jones, a sabbath-breaker, of Risca village, the devil appeared as an enormous mastiff dog, which transformed itself into a great fire and made a roaring noise like burning gorse'.
The 18th century Glanbran House was dismantled around 1930 and was the ancestral home of the Gwynne family, the descendants of David Goch Gwyn who settled at Glanbran in the 16th century. Wirt Sykes in his British Goblins: Welsh Folk-Lore, Fairy Mythology, Legends and Traditions (1881) gives the following story in which an unnamed member of the Gwynne family plays a prominent part. Read More »
The stone that lies in the village square to the East of the church is turned every year on November the 5th by local people. The stone is made from a type of quartz not found in the area, measures about six feet by four feet and weighs about a ton. Read More »
The following story is taken from ‘The Haunted Homes and Family Traditions’ of Great Britain by John Ingram (1897. 'On the southern slope of a picturesque valley, through which the Washburn pours its waters, stands the ruins of Dobb Park Lodge; a lofty, four-storied mansion of the Tudor period. Read More »
Dobbin were lazy creatures who would attach themselves to a particular farm. In times of trouble they sometimes exerted themselves on behalf of the family.
[The Folklore Of Warwickshire (1976) by Roy Palmer]
The Dobhar-chu or water hound is a lake dwelling creature of Irish Folklore. It is covered in short white fur with a dark cross on it’s back and described as being like a dog or a large sea otter. Read More »
Doon Hill and the Old Kirk in Aberfoyle, will forever be associated with the Reverend Robert Kirk, who wrote the Secret Commonwealth in 1691. The book is an essay on the nature and social structure of supernatural beings or fairies. Robert was a seventh son, said to have been gifted with second sight. Read More »
The Dream of Maxen Wledig is one of the Medieval Welsh tales translated by Lady Charlotte Guest, which were published collectively as the Mabinogion in 1849. The story is rooted in a mythic interpretation of the twilight of Roman era in Britain. Read More »