A Witch Who Turned A Blue Dye Into A Red Dye


An old hag went to a small farmhouse in Clocaenog parish, and found the

farmer's wife occupied in dyeing wool blue. She begged for a little wool

and blue dye. She was informed by Mrs. --- that she was really very

sorry that she could not part with either, as she had only just barely

enough for her own use. The hag departed, and the woman went on with her

dyeing, but to her surprise, the wool came out of the pot dyed red
/> instead of blue. She thought that possibly it was the dye that was to

blame, and so she gave up for the night her employment, and the next day

she went to Ruthin for a fresh supply of blue to finish her work, but

again she failed to dye the wool blue, for red, and not blue, was the

result of her dyeing. She, in surprise, told a neighbour of her

unaccountable failure to dye her wool blue. This neighbour asked her if

she had been visited by anyone, and she in answer told her that old so

and so had been at her house begging. Ah, was the response, I see how

it is you can never dye that wool blue, you have been witched, send the

red wool and the part that you have not touched here to me, and I will

finish the work for you. This was done, and the same colour was used by

both women, but now it became blue, whilst with the other, it was red.

This tale was told me by a gentleman who does not wish his name to appear

in print, as it would lead to the identification of the parties

mentioned, and the descendants of the supposed witch, being respectable

farmers, would rather that the tale of their canny grandmother were

forgotten, but my informant vouches for the truth of the tale.