The Little Robber Girl
The Boy Who Cried Wolf
AMERICAN INDIAN STORIES
Animal Sketches And Stories
Blondine Bonne Biche and Beau Minon
BRER RABBIT and HIS NEIGHBORS
CHINESE MOTHER-GOOSE RHYMES
FABLES FOR CHILDREN
FABLES FROM INDIA
FATHER PLAYS AND MOTHER PLAYS
FIRST STORIES FOR VERY LITTLE FOLK
For Classes Ii. And Iii.
For Classes Iv. And V.
For Kindergarten And Class I.
FUN FOR VERY LITTLE FOLK
Good Little Henry
JAPANESE AND OTHER ORIENTAL TALES]
Jean De La Fontaine
King Alexander's Adventures
KINGS AND WARRIORS
LAND AND WATER FAIRIES
Lessons From Nature
LITTLE STORIES that GROW BIG
MODERN FAIRY TALES
MOTHER GOOSE CONTINUED
MOTHER GOOSE JINGLES
MOTHER GOOSE SONGS AND STORIES
Myths And Legends
NEGLECT THE FIRE
ON POPULAR EDUCATION
PLACES AND FAMILIES
Poems Of Nature
RESURRECTION DAY (EASTER)
RHYMES CONCERNING "MOTHER"
RIDING SONGS for FATHER'S KNEE
ROMANCES OF THE MIDDLE AGES
SAINT VALENTINE'S DAY
Selections From The Bible
SLEEPY-TIME SONGS AND STORIES
Some Children's Poets
Songs Of Life
STORIES BY FAVORITE AMERICAN WRITERS
STORIES FOR CHILDREN
STORIES for LITTLE BOYS
STORIES FROM BOTANY
STORIES FROM GREAT BRITAIN
STORIES FROM IRELAND
STORIES FROM PHYSICS
STORIES FROM SCANDINAVIA
STORIES FROM ZOOLOGY
STORIES _for_ LITTLE GIRLS
THE DAYS OF THE WEEK
The King Of The Golden River; Or, The Black Brothers
The Little Grey Mouse
THE OLD FAIRY TALES
The Princess Rosette
THE THREE HERMITS
THE TWO OLD MEN
UNCLES AND AUNTS AND OTHER RELATIVES
VERSES ABOUT FAIRIES
WHAT MEN LIVE BY
WHERE LOVE IS, THERE GOD IS ALSO
from The Swedish Fairy Book
Once upon a time there lived two peasants on a homestead called
Vaderas, just as there are two peasants living on it now. In those
days the roads were good, and the women were in the habit of riding
when they wanted to go to church.
One Christmas the two women agreed that they would ride to Christmas
night mass, and whichever one of them woke up at the right time was to
call the other, for in those days there was no such thing as a watch.
It was about midnight when one of the women thought she heard a voice
from the window, calling: "I am going to set out now." She got up
hurriedly and dressed herself, so that she might be able to ride with
the other woman; but since there was no time to eat, she took a piece
of bread from the table along with her. In those times it was
customary to bake the bread in the shape of a cross. It was a piece of
this kind that the woman took and put in her pocket, in order to eat
it underway. She rode as fast as she could, to catch up with her
friend, but could not overtake her. The way led over a little stream
which flows into Vidostern Lake, and across the stream was a bridge,
known as the Earth Bridge, and on the bridge stood two witch trolls,
busy washing. As the woman came riding across the bridge, one of the
witch trolls called out to the other, "Hurry, and tear her head from
"That I cannot do" returned the other, "because she has a bit of bread
in the form of a cross in her pocket."
The woman, who had been unable to catch up with her neighbor, reached
the church at Hanger alone.
The church was full of lights, as was always the case when the
Christmas mass was said. As quickly as ever she could the woman tied
up her horse, and hurriedly entered the church. It seemed to her that
the church was crowded with people; but all of them were headless, and
at the altar stood the priest, in full canonicals but without a head.
In her haste she did not at once see how things were; but sat down in
her accustomed place. As she sat down it seemed to her that some one
said: "If I had not stood godfather to you when you were christened, I
would do away with you as you sit there, and now hurry and make
yourself scarce, or it will be the worse for you!" Then she realized
that things were not as they should be, and ran out hastily.
When she came into the church-yard, it seemed to her as though she
were surrounded by a great crowd of people. In those days people wore
broad mantles of unbleached wool, woven at home, and white in color.
She was wearing one of these mantles and the specters seized it. But
she flung it away from her and managed to escape from the church-yard,
and run to the poor-house and wake the people there. It is said it was
then one o'clock at night.
So she sat and waited for the early mass at four o'clock in the
morning. And when day finally dawned, they found a little piece of her
mantle on every grave in the church-yard.
A similar experience befell a man and his wife who lived in a hut
known as Ingas, below Mosled.
They were no more than an hour ahead of time; but when they reached
the church at Hanger, they thought the service had already begun, and
wanted to enter at once; but the church was barred and bolted, and the
phantom service of the dead was nearing its end. And when the actual
mass began, there was found lying at every place some of the earth
from the graves of those who shortly before had been worshiping. The
man and his wife thereupon fell grievously ill, because they had
disturbed the dead.
"Yuletide Spectres." The tale of the weird service of the dead
on Christmas night is common throughout Scandinavia. (From an
mss. communicated by Dr. v. Sydow-Lund).
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