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Plants in Witchcraft by Thomas Firminger Thiselton Dyer - Ragwort



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From Popular Science Monthly Volume 34 April 1889  (1889) 
Plants in Witchcraft by Thomas Firminger Thiselton Dyer

The large ragwort—known in Ireland as the "fairies' horse"—has long been sought for by witches when taking their midnight journeys. Burns, in his "Address to the Deil," makes his witches "skim the muirs and dizzy crags" on "rag-bred nags" with "wicked speed."

The same legendary belief prevails in Cornwall, in connection with the Castle Peak, a high rock to the south of the Logan stone. Here, writes Mr. Hunt in "Popular Romances of the West of England," 1871, "many a man and woman too, now quietly sleeping in the churchyard of St. Levan, would, had they the power, attest to have seen the witches flying into the Castle Peak on moonlight nights, mounted on the stems of the ragwort."

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