Dickon the Devil

  • DICKON THE DEVIL

  • Man

    About thirty years ago I was selected by two rich old maids to visit a property in that part of Lancashire which lies near the famous forest of Pendle, with which Mr. Ainsworth's “Lancashire Witches” has made us so pleasantly familiar.

    Profile Picture of Man in Dickon the Devil
  • My business was to make partition of a small property, including a house and demesne, to which they had a long time before succeeded as co-heiresses.

  • The last forty miles of my journey I was obliged to post, chiefly by cross-roads, little known, and less frequented, and presenting scenery often extremely interesting and pretty.

  • The picturesqueness of the landscape was enhanced by the season, the beginning of September, at which I was travelling.

  • I had never been in this part of the world before;

  • I am told it is now a great deal less wild, and, consequently, less beautiful.

  • Man

    At the inn where I had stopped for a relay of horses and some dinner—

    Profile Picture of Man in Dickon the Devil
  • for it was then past five o'clock—

  • I found the host, a hale old fellow of five-and-sixty, as he told me, a man of easy and garrulous benevolence, willing to accommodate his guests with any amount of talk, which the slightest tap sufficed to set flowing, on any subject you pleased.

  • I was curious to learn something about Barwyke, which was the name of the demesne and house I was going to.

  • As there was no inn within some miles of it, I had written to the steward to put me up there, the best way he could, for a night.

  • The host of the “Three Nuns,” which was the sign under which he entertained wayfarers, had not a great deal to tell.

  • It was twenty years, or more, since old Squire Bowes died, and no one had lived in the Hall ever since, except the gardener and his wife.

  • Profile Picture of Innkeeper in Dickon the Devil

    Innkeeper

    “Tom Wyndsour will be as old a man as myself;

  • but he's a bit taller, and not so much in flesh, quite,”

  • Man

    said the fat innkeeper.

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  • Profile Picture of Man in Dickon the Devil

    Man

    “But there were stories about the house,”

  • Man

    I repeated,

    Profile Picture of Man in Dickon the Devil
  • Profile Picture of Man in Dickon the Devil

    Man

    “that they said, prevented tenants from coming into it?”