Page:The Folk-Lore Journal Volume 7 1889.djvu/63

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55
NOTES AND QUERIES.

dead man's hand could dissipate tumours of the glands, by stroking the part nine times ; but the hand of a man who had been cut down from the gallows was the most efficacious. To cure warts, one had nothing to do but to steal a piece of beef from the butcher, with which the warts were to be rubbed, then interring it in any filth, and as it rotted the warts would wither and fall. The chips of a gallows on which several had been hanged, when worn in a bag round the neck, would cure the ague. A stone with a hole in it, suspended at the head of a bed, would effectually stop the night-mare ; hence it was called a hag-stone, as it prevents the troublesome witches from sitting upon the sleeper's stomach. The same amulet, tied to the key of a stable door, deterred witches from riding horses over the country. — Boston, Lincoln, Louth, and Spalding Herald, 7th February, 1837."

Edward Peacock.

Scandinavian Polk-Lore. — The following passages from L. Lloyd's Scandinavian Adventures, 1854, are worth reproducing in the Folk-Lore Journal : —

"In parts of Scandinavia the curious notion prevails, that though bears, if unmolested, generally flee at the sight of man, they will always attack pregnant women." — (i. 256).

"Another singular notion also prevalent in parts of Scandinavia is, that when the bear has received his death-wound, he, rather than fall into the hands of his pursuers, will commit self-destruction."— (i. 257).

"The superstitious notions entertained in Scandinavia regarding the wolf are multitudinous. In certain districts, during a portion of the spring, the peasants do not venture to call him by his usual designation of Varg, as in that case he will carry away their cattle the following summer, but substitute in its stead that of Ulf, Grahans, &c. To meet a wolf at certain hours, or under certain circumstances, is looked upon as a bad omen ; and the appearance of those beasts in numbers, to forbode war or other great calamity. Old hags, moreover, reputed to deal in the black art, who dwell alone in the recesses of the forest, are belieyed to be in league with, and to harbour wolves ;