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Welsh Folk Lore - Stories Of Satan, Ghosts, Etc.

Mermaids And Mermen
It is said that these fabulous beings frequented the sea-co...

Stories Of Satan Ghosts Etc
Although Max Muller, in Chips from a German Workshop, vol. ...

Satan Playing Cards
A good many years ago I travelled from Pentrevoelas to Yspy...

Satan Playing Cards At A Merry Meeting
It was formerly a general custom in Wales for young lads an...

Satan Playing Cards On Rhyd-y-cae Bridge_ _pentrevoelas
Gwas yn y Gilar a phen campwr ei oes am chwareu cardiau oed...

Satan Snatching A Man Up Into The Air
It would appear that poor Bob was doomed to a sad end. His...

Satan Frightening A Man For Gathering Nuts On Sunday
The following tale was related to me by the Rev. W. E. Jone...

Satan Taking Possession Of A Man Who Fished On Sunday
The following tale is in its main features still current in...

Satan Appearing In Many Forms To A Man Who Travelled On Sunday
I received the following tale from my deceased friend, the ...

The Evil Spirit Appearing To A Man Who Frequented Alehouses On Sunday
Jones writes as follows:--W. J. was once a Sabbath-breaker ...

Satan Outwitted
In the preceding tales the Evil One is depicted as an agent...

Satan And Churches
The traditional stories that are still extant respecting th...

The Ejectment Of The Evil Spirit From Llanfor Church
Mr. Roberts states that his grandmother, born in 1744, had ...

An Evil Spirit In Llandysilio Church Montgomeryshire
The history of this Spirit's proceedings is given in Bye-Go...

A Spirit In Llangerniew Church_ _denbighshire
There was a tradition in this parish that on All-Hallows' E...

Satan And Bell Ringing
Durand, according to Bourne, in his Antiquities of the Comm...

Mysterious Removal Of Churches
I. LLANLLECHID CHURCH. There was a tradition extant i...

Apparitions Of The Devil
To accomplish his nefarious designs the Evil Spirit assumed...

The Devil Appearing To A Dissenting Minister At Denbigh
The Rev. Mr. Thomas Baddy, who lived in Denbigh Town, and w...

The Devil's Tree By Eglwys Rhos
At the corner of the first turning after passing the villag...

Satan Appearing As A Lovely Maiden
The following story I received from the Rev. Owen Jones, Pe...

A Man Carried Away By The Evil One
W. E., of Ll--- M---, was a very bad man; he was a brawler,...

Satan Appearing To A Young Man
A young man, who had left Pentrevoelas to live in a farm ho...

Satan Appearing To A Collier
John Roberts of Colliers' Row, Cyfartha, Merthyr, was once ...

Ghosts Or Spirits
Ghosts, or Spirits, were supposed to be the shades of depar...

The Gloddaeth Ghost
The following tale was told the Rev. Owen Jones, Pentrevoel...

Tymawr Ghost Bryneglwys
This Ghost plagued the servants, pinched and tormented them...

Ffrith Farm Ghost
I am indebted to Mr. Williams, schoolmaster, Bryneglwys, fo...

Pont-y-glyn Ghost
There is a picturesque glen between Corwen and Cerrig-y-Dru...

Ysbryd Ystrad Fawr
Yr oedd Ysbryd yn Ystrad Fawr, ger Llangwm, yn arfer ymddan...

Ty Felin Ghost Llanynys
An exciseman, overtaken by night, went to a house called Ty...

Llandegla Spirit
The tale of this Spirit was given me by Mr. Roberts, late S...

Lady Jeffrey's Spirit
This lady could not rest in her grave because of her misdee...

Pentrevoelas Squire Griffith's Ghost
A couple of workmen engaged at Foelas, the seat of the late...

David Salisbury's Ghost
I will quote from Bye-Gones, vol. iii., p. 211, an account ...

A Ghost Appearing To Point Out Hidden Treasures
There is a farm house called Clwchdyrnog in the parish of L...

The Powis Castle Ghost Revealing A Hidden Box To A Woman
The following is the narrative:--It had been for some time ...

The Spirit Of Llyn-nad-y-forwyn
It is said that a young man was about to marry a young girl...

Spirit Laying
It must have been a consolation to those who believed in th...

Cynon's Ghost
One of the wicked Spirits which plagued the secluded Valley...

Caellwyngrydd Spirit
This was a dangerous Spirit. People passing along the road...

Ghost Raising
If the possibility of Ghost Laying was believed in, so also...

Witches And Conjurors
From and before the days of King Saul, to the present momen...

Llanddona Witches
There is a tradition in the parish of Llanddona, Anglesey, th...

Witches Transforming Themselves Into Cats
One of the forms that witches were supposed to change thems...

The Witches' Revenge On Huw Llwyd
Several months after the occurrence recorded above of Huw L...

A Witch Transformed Into A Hare Injured By One Whom She Tormented
An old woman, thought to be a witch, was said by a neighbou...

A Witch Shot When In The Form Of A Hare
The following tale was told me by the Rev. R. Jones, Rector...

A Witch In The Form Of A Hare In A Churn
In the Spectator, No. 117, are these words:-- If the...

A Hare Crossing The Road
Mr. Jones said that when he was a lad, he and his mother we...

A Witch In The Form Of A Hare Hunted By A Black Greyhound
The writer has heard variants of the following tale in seve...

Early Reference To Witches Turning Themselves Into Hares
The prevalence of the belief that witches could transform t...

Ceridwen And Gwion_ (_gwiawn_) _bach's Transformation
But a striking instance of rapid transition from one form t...

A Man Turned Into A Hare
One of the servant men at Dolfawr, some years before Mr. Wi...

A Man Changed Into A Horse
Mr. Williams writes of the same servant man who figures in ...

A Witch Who Turned A Blue Dye Into A Red Dye
An old hag went to a small farmhouse in Clocaenog parish, a...

A Pig Witched
A woman sold a pig at Beaumaris to a man called Dick y Gree...

A Witch Who Was Refused A Goose And Her Revenge
A witch called at a farm when they were feathering geese fo...

A Horse Witched
Pedws Ffoulk, a supposed witch, was going through a field w...

Cows And Horses Witched
The writer was told the name of the farm where the followin...

Witches Punished
A neighbour, who does not wish to have his name recorded, s...

Conjurors
1. It was formerly believed that men could sell themselves...

Huw Llwyd And His Magical Books
The story, as it has reached our days, is as follows:--It i...

The Magician's Glass
This glass, into which a person looked when he wished to so...

A Conjuror And Robbers
A conjuror, or Gwr Cyfarwydd, was travelling over the Denbi...

The Conjuror And The Cattle
R. H., a farmer in Llansilin parish, who lost several head ...

A Conjuror's Collusion Exposed
This man's house consisted of but few rooms. Between the kit...

The Conjuror's Dress
Conjurors, when engaged in their uncanny work, usually wore...

Charms
The cure of diseases by charms is generally supposed to be ...

Swyno'r 'ryri (charming The Shingles)
The shingles is a skin disease, which encircles the body li...

A Charm For The Shingles
This custom (charming for the shingles) was more prevalent ...

Toothache Charms
By repeating the following doggerel lines the worst case of...

Rosemary Charm For Toothache
Llosg ei bren (Rhosmari) hyd oni bo yn lo du, ac yna dyro e...

Whooping Cough Charm
Children suffering from whooping cough were taken to a seve...

Charm For Fits
A ring made out of the offertory money was a cure for fits....

Charm For Cocks About To Fight
The charm consisted of a verse taken from the Bible, writte...

Charm For Asthma
Place the Bible for three successive nights under the bolst...

Charms For Warts
1. Drop a pin into a holy well and your warts will disappe...

Charm For Removing A Stye From The Eye
Take an ordinary knitting needle, and pass it back and fore...

Charms For Quinsy
Apply to the throat hair cut at midnight from the black sho...

Charming The Wild Wart
Take a branch of elder tree, strip off the bark, split off ...

Charm For Rheumatism
Carry a potato in your pocket, and when one is finished, su...

Charm For Removing The Ringworm
1. Spit on the ground the first thing in the morning, mix ...

Cattle Charms
Mr. Hamer in his Parochial Account of Llanidloes published ...

Charm Against Foot And Mouth Disease
The cattle on a certain farm in Llansilin parish suffered f...

Another Cattle Charm Spell
Mr. Hughes, Plasnewydd, Llansilin, lost several head of cat...

A Charm For Stopping Bleeding
Mrs. Reynolds, whom I have already mentioned in connection ...

Charm To Make A Servant Reliable
Y neb a fyno gael ei weinidog yn gywir, doded beth o'r llud...

Charms Performed With Snake's Skin
1. Burn the skin and preserve the ashes. A little salve m...

The Charms Performed With Rosemary
Rosemary dried in the sun and made into powder, tied in a c...

Charm For Clefyd Y Galon_ _or Heart Disease
The Rev. J. Felix, vicar of Cilcen, near Mold, when a young...



Satan Outwitted






Category: STORIES OF SATAN, GHOSTS, ETC.

In the preceding tales the Evil One is depicted as an agent in the
destruction of his own kingdom. He thus shows his obtuseness, or his
subordination to a higher power. In the story that follows, he is
outwitted by a Welshman. Many variants of this tale are found in many
countries. It is evident from this and like stories, that it was
believed the Spirit of Evil could easily be circumvented by an
intelligent human being.

The tale is taken from Y Brython, vol. v., p. 192. I when a lad often
heard the story related, and the scene is laid in Trefeglwys,
Montgomeryshire, a parish only a few miles distant from the place where I
spent my childhood. The writer in Y Brython, speaking of Ffinant,
says that this farm is about a mile from Trefeglwys, on the north side of
the road leading to Newtown. He then proceeds as follows:--

Mae hen draddodiad tra anhygoel yn perthyn i'r lie hwn. Dywedir fod hen
ysgubor yn sefyll yn yr ochr ddeheuol i'r brif-ffordd. Un boreu Sul, pan
ydoedd y meistr yn cychwyn i'r Eglwys, dywedodd wrth un o'i weision am
gadw y brain oddi ar y maes lle yr oedd gwenith wedi ei hau, yn yr hwn y
safai yr hen ysgubor. Y gwas, trwy ryw foddion, a gasglodd y brain oll
iddi, a chauodd arnynt; yna dilynodd ei feistr i'r Eglwys; yntau, wrth ei
weled yno, a ddechreuodd ei geryddu yn llym. Y meistr, wedi clywed y
fath newydd, a hwyliodd ei gamrau tua'i gartref; ac efe a'u cafodd, er ei
syndod, fel y crybwyllwyd; ac fe ddywedir fod yr ysgubor yn orlawn o
honynt. Gelwir y maes hwn yn Crow-barn, neu Ysgubor y brain, hyd
heddyw. Dywedir mai enw y gwas oedd Dafydd Hiraddug, ac iddo werthu ei
hun i'r diafol, ac oherwydd hyny, ei fod yn alluog i gyflawni
gweithredoedd anhygoel yn yr oes hon. Pa fodd bynag, dywedir i Dafydd
fod yn gyfrwysach na'r hen sarff y tro hwn, yn ol y cytundeb fu
rhyngddynt. Yr ammod oedd, fod i'r diafol gael meddiant hollol o
Ddafydd, os dygid ei gorff dros erchwyn gwely, neu trwy ddrws, neu os
cleddid ef mewn mynwent, neu mewn Eglwys. Yr oedd Dafydd wedi gorchymyn,
pan y byddai farw, am gymmeryd yr afu a'r ysgyfaint o'i gorff, a'i taflu
i ben tomen, a dal sylw pa un ai cigfran ai colomen fyddai yn ennill
buddugoliaeth am danynt; os cigfran, am gymmeryd ei gorff allan trwy
waelod ac nid dros erchwyn y gwely; a thrwy bared ac nid trwy ddrws, a'i
gladdu, nid mewn mynwent na llan, ond o dan fur yr Eglwys; ac i'r diafol
pan ddeallodd hyn lefaru, gan ddywedyd:--

Dafydd Hiraddug ei ryw,
Ffals yn farw, ffals yn fyw.

The tale in English is as follows:--

There is an incredible tradition connected with this place Ffinant,
Trefeglwys. It is said that an old barn stands on the right hand side of
the highway. One Sunday morning, as the master was starting to church,
he told one of the servants to keep the crows from a field that had been
sown with wheat, in which field the old barn stood. The servant, through
some means, collected all the crows into the barn, and shut the door on
them. He then followed his master to the Church, who, when he saw the
servant there, began to reprove him sharply. But the master, when he
heard the strange news, turned his steps homewards, and found to his
amazement that the tale was true, and it is said that the barn was filled
with crows. This barn, ever afterwards was called Crow-barn, a name it
still retains.

It is said that the servant's name was Dafydd Hiraddug, and that he had
sold himself to the devil, and that consequently, he was able to perform
feats, which in this age are considered incredible. However, it is said
that Dafydd was on this occasion more subtle than the old serpent, even
according to the agreement which was between them. The contract was,
that the devil was to have complete possession of Dafydd if his corpse
were taken over the side of the bed, or through a door, or if buried in a
churchyard, or inside a church. Dafydd had commanded, that on his death,
the liver and lights were to be taken out of his body and thrown on the
dunghill, and notice was to be taken whether a raven or a dove got
possession of them; if a raven, then his body was to be taken away by the
foot, and not by the side of the bed, and through the wall, and not
through the door, and he was to be buried, not in the churchyard nor in
the Church, but under the Church walls. And the devil, when he saw that
by these arrangements he had been duped cried, saying:--

Dafydd Hiraddug, badly bred,

False when living, and false when dead.

Such is the tale. I now come to another series of Folk-Lore stories,
which seem to imply that in ancient days rival religions savagely
contended for the supremacy, and in these tales also Satan occupies a
prominent position.





Next: Satan And Churches

Previous: The Evil Spirit Appearing To A Man Who Frequented Alehouses On Sunday



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