Mr. Alfred Bard sees the ghost of Mrs de Freville - My eyes were riveted on her, and she turned her face toward me, following me with her eyes
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Death and its Mystery: After Death – Camille Flammarion
Here is Mr. Alfred Bard's own story: July 25, 1885.
I am a gardener; I work at Sawston. When I go home from my work I always go through the Hinxton cemetery.
On Friday, the eighth of last May, I was returning as usual when I was in the cemetery I looked down rather closely at the lawn, at a cow and a donkey lying there just within the gateway. As I lowered my head I glanced in the direction of the square vault where Mr. de Freville had been buried. Then I saw Mrs. de Freville leaning against the grating, dressed just as I used to see her ordinarily; she had on a hat of the sort called a coal-scuttle bonnet, a black jacket trimmed with crepe and a black dress. She looked straight at me. Her face was very white - much whiter than usual. I knew her well, for I had worked at her home for some time.
I supposed that she had come, as she sometimes did, to go into the mausoleum, and thought that Mr. Wiles, a mason from Cambridge, must be in the tomb, busy about something. I walked all around the door, looking closely to see if it were open. My eyes were riveted on her, and I myself was not more than five to six meters from her. She turned her face toward me, following me with her eyes. I walked between the church and the tomb (they are about four meters apart) looking to see if the tomb were open, for she was in just such a position that she hid the door of it from me. When I turned around she was gone.
It was impossible for her to have left the cemetery, because to reach either one of the two exits she would have had to pass me. I was, therefore, convinced that she had gone into the tomb quickly. I went toward the door, which I expected to find open, but to my great surprise it was locked.
As a matter of fact, it had not been opened at all ; there was no key in the lock. I hoped to be able to look into the tomb itself; I shook the door to make sure that it was firmly locked, but there was no sign that anyone had been there.
Then I was very much frightened and looked at the clock; it was half-past nine. When I got home, I asked myself if what I had seen had been a product of my imagination; I told my wife of it, however. When, the next day, I was told that Mrs de Freville was dead, I was so startled that it made me jump. I have never had any other hallucination.