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brazen ornament upon their temples. But long before this discovery was made, the place had the reputation of being haunted: a man of dark complexion was seen to glide from one point of the rock to another, and silently disappear.” A very remarkable cairn at Hollin Stump (near Asby) had a similar ill name.
There is a story told of a man passing this place on his road from Gaythron Hall to Kendal fair, being very much alarmed by an apparition that suddenly crossed his path. He said that there galloped past him a figure on horseback without a head, but wearing upon his shoulders something like a flat board."
Whether “bo” ever enjoyed an actual or independent existence I am unable to learn. Jamieson (Scottish Dictionary) defines bu as an object of terror, bu-kow as a scarecrow or hobgoblin, and bu-man as a goblin or the devil. Boggle-bo and boggle-de-boo do not seem to differ from ordinary boggles.* Mr. Simpson gives a good illustration of bo. “At a place lying to the northeast of Kendal, a man and his son were breaking in a mare. think noo,' said the lad to his father, 'et meyar ill nit boggle?' • Neyah,' said the old man, she'll boggle nin, nit she; but we can try her. Gang thee thee ways, and git ahint a yat-stoop, en I'll git on't meyar en ride her through’t gap-steed, en just as I's gangin til't, rear thee oot and shout bo! en if she stands that, she'll stand out.' The lad did as he was told, and the old man rode the mare very quietly towards the gateway. When he had approached within a few yards, out popped the lad with his dirty cap over his head, and shouted bo! Away went the mare across the field, and down fell the old man with a 'soss,' happily not much the worse for his tumble. Od's wile licht o’ thee, thoo lile varment,' said he, thoo boes with neyah judgment at a'-thoo mud ha kilt thee fadder.'”
Westmorland never produced a more famous boggle-infamous
• Do ye
* It may be worth mentioning that Boa is the name of the principal divinity of the northern people (Tungusians, Ostiaks, etc.). But bo, or boo, is more pro. bably an Indo-European word (Sans. bhi, to fear). Boggle-de-boo may be translated "the spirit of fear."
JEMMY LOWTHER AND OLD SHEPHERD.
as a man, famous as a boggle-than Jemmy Lowther, well known, for want of a more appropriate name, as the “bad Lord Lonsdale.” This notorious character, who seemed the transmigration of the worst and coarsest feudal baron ever imported into England by the Conqueror, became a still greater terror to the country after death, than he had even been during his life. He was with difficulty buried; and whilst the clergyman was praying over him, he very nearly knocked the reverend gentleman from his desk. When placed in the grave, the power of creating alarm was not interred with his bones. There were disturbances in the Hall, noises in the stables; neither men nor animals were suffered to rest. Jemmy's “coach and six” is still remembered and spoken of, from which we are probably to understand that he produced a noise, as boggles frequently do, like an equipage of this description. There is nothing said of his shape, or whether he ever appeared at all; but it is certain he made himself audible. The Hall became almost uninhabitable, and out of doors there was constant danger of meeting the miscreant ghost. In desperate cases of this kind, it appears, there is no assistance to be had, except from a Catholic priest, one reason being that the exorcism must be made in Latin. Jemmy, however-obstinate old boggle !-stood a long siege; and when at length he offered terms of capitulation, was only willing to go to the Red Sea for a year and a day. But it was decided that these terms should not be accepted; the priest read on until he fully overpowered the tyrant, and laid him under a large rock called Wallow Crag, and laid him for ever.
In modern times, when the personality of the boggles is known, it appears that most of them are, like Jemmy Lowther, individuals who enjoyed an unenviable notoriety while living, and for whom there is no sympathy after death. About the latter end of the last century, a man well known in the neighbourhood of Appleby as Old Shepherd, whose life had not been spent in virtuous deeds, became so troublesome as a boggle, that he had to be forcibly expelled the house, and laid. A Catholic priest was the exorcist, and the “material guarantee,” under which he was laid, a large stone not far from the door. My informant, who lived in that part
of the country about forty years ago, on the occasion of an election triumph, assisted at a bone-fire within a short distance of Old Shepherd's house. Whilst they were enjoying themselves round the fire, and “ cracking” of Old Shepherd, lo! the old fellow made his appearance from under the stone in the shape of a large white something; but he turned off sideways, and sailed down the “beck," in which they could hear him splashing like a horse. Encouraged by the shyness of the boggle, they burned out their fire, and removed further down the “beck side," where some wood was known to be lying. Here they made another fire, when Old Shepherd again hove in sight. The second time my informant did not see him, but some one gave the alarm, and all dispersed for the night.
Some incredulous individuals there are who may consider unsatisfactory the evidence on the boggle cases narrated; all such are requested to read the story of the Henhow boggle, the truth of which they may ascertain by a little inquiry. It happened about twenty-three years ago. The man to whom the boggle appeared was living in Martindale, at a cottage called Henhow. His wife had heard some unaccountable noise in or around the house, and informed her husband, but no farther notice was taken. One morning he had to go to his work at an early hour, and having several miles to walk, he started soon after midnight. He had not got above two hundred yards from the house, when the dog by which he was accompanied, gave signs of alarm. He looked round -at the other side of the wall that bounded the road, appeared a woman, keeping pace with him, and carrying a child in her arms. There was no means of escape; he spoke to the figure, and asked her what
was troubling her ?” Then she told him her story. She had once lived at Henhow, and had been seduced. Her seducer, to cloak his guilt and her frailty, met her by appointment at a certain market-town, and gave her a medicine, the purpose of which is obvious. It proved too potent, and killed both mother and child. Her doom was to wander thus for a hundred years, forty of which were already expired. On his return home at night, the man told what he had seen and heard; and when the
THE HENHOW BOGGLE.
extraordinary story spread through the dale, the “old wives" were enabled to recall some almost forgotten incidents precisely identical with those related by the boggle. The seducer was known to be a clergyman. The occurrence is believed to have made a lasting impression on the old man, who still lives, and was until very lately a shepherd on the fells. There can be no moral doubt that he both saw, and spoke with, the boggle; but what share his imagination had therein, or how it had been excited, are mysteries, and so they are likely to remain.
The swath, or swarf, called in Northumberland, the wraith, or wauf, and in some places the fetch, still gains currency in the north. “There is a person now living in the county," says Mr. Simpson, “who fully believes the swarf, or likeness of his nephew appeared to him the night he was lost at sea. He was aroused from sleep by a noise, as of some one clinging to the window of the bedroom. He looked round and distinctly saw the face and form of his nephew, then on his journey to India. After gazing into the room a short while, the apparition seemed to fall to the ground with a dull, heavy sound. The uncle rose from bed, and looked out of the window, but nothing could be seen. It is thought that if the swarf is seen late in the day, and on the road towards church, the person to whom it is like will soon die; if it is seen in the early part of the morning, and going in any other direction, it betokens health and long life.”
Though it would be unsafe to declare the entire extinction of boggles, it is certain they have very sensibly declined. The boggles of the present day are scarcely more than the ghosts of boggles, and the persons now most tenacious of such stories, are old country tailors. Not one of these who cannot tell tales of boggles innumerable. On winter nights after dark, the interest of these stories becomes painfully intense, as the tailor has probably to pass, in his way home, some spot-a pond or quarry-where he himself or somebody else has seen once, when all alone, late at night, neither moon nor stars visible, no human creature within hearing on whom to call for aid, ----something white, that never stirred.
Perhaps the abortive attempt made to get up the Orton boggle a few years ago in Westmorland, is as striking a proof as need be
given of the decline of this belief. One characteristic incident occurred amongst the stories that then became current in the country. It was said that a “Methodee man” (Methodist preacher) was brought to exorcise the boggle, thus assuming for “Methodee men" the power supposed at one time to belong exclusively to Catholic priests. But the exorcist on receiving a blow with his own hat on the back of his head, very properly declined any
further interference. On the whole, as far as local history is concerned, there is every appearance that the last page of the chapter of boggles is turned for ever.