314 NOTES AND QUERIES.
lake. Giving a shriek she flew straight to it, and vanished for ever
under the water.
(c) A man made a bet that he would go to the bottom of Lough
Sheelin and bring up something from it, and one day he jumped in
and went down. Below he found a house, which he entered, and saw
in it an old woman sitting at a table, beneath which lay a gigantic eel
coiled up. The old woman inquired, " In God's name what do you
want down here ? "
" Something to show that I was at the bottom of the lake."
" Then take that copper skillet and get away as quick as you can."
This he did, and swimming to the edge just got out of the water
before the great eel, which was in pursuit of him, ploughed up the
ground with its head exactly where he had landed.
These short legends were communicated to me by letter by
E. Crofton Rotherham, Esq.
An Antrim Harvest Custom. — From my friend Professor Ridgeway, of Queen's College, Cork, I have received the following :
In Co. Antrim, up to a few years ago, when the sickle was finally expelled by the reaping machine, when the reapers came to the last piece of standing corn in the last field they left a few stalks standing, then plaited them together, and next proceeded to take shots in turn, blindfolded, with their sickles at the plaited corn. Whoever struck it with his sickle in such a way as to cut it brought it home and put it over his door. This bunch of corn was called the carley ; I spell it on the analogy of barley, as my informant did not know how it was spelled. I fear that it may be only one of your Scotch customs which has passed over into Antrim. My informant told me it prevailed in the glens of Antrim, where they still speak Irish, and of course from this it may be Keltic custom."
J. G. Frazer.