Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 14, 1903.djvu/116

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loo Reviews.

(p. 250) tells us that when a woollen thread, over which a charm has been repeated, is brought home, it must be carried in the palm of the hand and not between the finger (forefinger?) and thumb, because with them Eve plucked the apple, and so they are not blessed. This explanation, though it cannot be very ancient, seems to cover part of Dr. Maclagan's fact. His own idea (p. 171) appears to be that the forefinger is not used because it is one of the fingers protruded in forming the tnatio cortiuta, and this of course would also include the equally excluded little finger. But as, on the other hand, of the fingers employed one is the digitus in/amis or i^npudicus, while the thumb is con- spicuously used in the manofica, this suggestion may not be the right one, and the real reason is yet to be discovered. Again in a story, related by Miss Freer to illustrate the belief that eating an eel drives a man mad, the man kills a horse and eats the raw flesh. No reason is given for killing the horse. But in another story given by Mr. Campbell {op. cit., p. 222), which perhaps refers to the same event, the madman is found fighting a horse, and the reason alleged for his doing so is, because the eels he had eaten had grown from horse-hairs.

John Abercromby.

Popular Religion in the Panjab. Report of the Census of the Panjab and North-West Frontier Province of 190 1. By H. A. Rose. Simla. 1902.

In his valuable report of the results of the recent Census in the Panjab Mr. Rose has wisely decided not to follow the line of in- vestigation regarding the popular religion of the people which was so ably conducted by his predecessors, Messrs. Ibbetson and Maclagan, in their reports of the two preceding enumerations. But under the modest title of A Few Discursive Notes on Popular Religion he has discussed a well-worn subject in a fresh and suggestive way.

He begins by noting the suggestive fact that in India popular religion " has rather less to do with morality than with anything