Page:The Folk-Lore Journal Volume 7 1889.djvu/151

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143
THE PHILOSOPHY OF RUMPELSTILTSKIN.

Well, when ihe mawther heerd this, she fared as if she could ha' jumped outer her skin for joy, but she di'n't say a word.

Next day, that there little thing looked soo maliceful when he come for the flax. An' when night came, she heerd that a knockin' agin the winder panes. She oped the winder, an' that come right in on the ledge. That were grinnin' from are to are, an' Oo! tha's tail were twirlin' round so fast.

"What's my name?" that says, as that gonned her the skeins.

"Is that Solomon?" she says, pretendin' to be afeard.

"Noo, t'ain't," that says, an' that come fudder inter the room.

"Well, is that Zebedee?" says she, agin.

"Noo, t'ain't," says the impet. An' then that laughed an' twirled that's tail till yew cou'n't hardly see it.

"Take time, woman," that says; "next guess, an' you're mine.' An' that stretched out that's black hands at her.

Well, she backed a step or two, an' she looked at it, and then she laughed out, an' says she, a pointin' of her finger at it,

"Nimmy Nimmy not
Yar name's Tom Tit Tot."

Well, when that hard her, that shruck awful an' awa' that flew into the dark, an' she niver saw it noo more.

A. W. T.

In the Cornish variant, "Duffy and the Devil," which Robert Hunt says he remembers seeing acted as a Christmas play[1] when he was a boy, a squire hears Jenny Chygwin beating her stepdaughter Duffy for romping with the boys instead of knitting stockings or spinning yarn. The squire, taken with Duffy's good looks, carries her off; and the old woman who keeps his house sets her to spin wool. The helpless girl, left to herself, cries out "Curse the spinning and knitting 1 The devil may spin and knit for the squire, for what I care."

Forthwith an odd mannikin appears, who offers to do her work and give her the power to fulfil any wish she may have, on condition that

  1. Pop. Romances of the West of England, p. 239.