The Water Maid

Long ago in the central mountains, a young man named Henio became lost while hunting. For many weeks he wandered through the forest, with only his horse to keep him company. He drank the water from the streams and ate berries and the small animals he caught, but he knew that he would perish if he did not find shelter quickly.

One morning, he came to an ancient stone wall. It was so high he could not see over it, and looking in either direction he could see no end.

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A Tale of the Tontlawald

Long, long ago in a country filled with many lakes lay a vast stretch of marsh called the Tontlawald. No one dared to venture there. It was known to be filled with ghosts who would walk the marshes, drowning anyone who ventured too close. A single village was situated nearby, and the people who looked upon the Tontlawald at night saw strange lights dancing in the marsh mists.

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The Dead Wife

Once upon a time there were a man and his wife who lived in the forest, very far from the rest of the tribe. Very often they spent the day in hunting together, but after a while the wife found that she had so many things to do that she was obliged to stay at home; so he went alone, though he found that when his wife was not with him he never had any luck. One day, when he was away hunting, the woman fell ill, and in a few days she died.

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Thieves’ Lights

There are many curious and miraculously unusual happenings and things in nature, of which no human understands how they occur or how they relate to other things, but they exist nonetheless. And when people hear stories about them, they are amazed and terrified, but they cannot comprehend them. Thus it is with the Raven Stone, which many people talk about, but no one knows anything about with certainty. But it is known for sure that Raven Stones exist.

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The Dark Daughter of the Norse King

When the Norsemen came to Scotland and lay claim to the land, they were famous for every manner of cruel spoliation, and slaughter of the people wherever they landed.  They were a bold, courageous, hardy, rough, peremptory and unscrupulous race.  More than that, it was attributed to them that they practiced witchcraft, charms, and enchantments, and had much of other unhallowed learning among them.

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The Selki Wife

A story is told of an inhabitant of Unst, who, in walking on the sandy margin of a voe, saw a number of mermen and mermaids dancing by moonlight, and several sealskins strewed beside them on the ground. At his approach they immediately fled to secure their garbs, and, taking upon themselves the form of seals, plunged immediately into the sea. But as the Shetlander perceived that one skin lay close to his feet, he snatched it up, bore it swiftly away, and placed it in concealment.

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Death’s Godson

Once, not long ago, there was a poor man who had twelve children.  He worked day and night to keep them fed, and could not even provide them with enough clothing to stay warm.  When his thirteenth child was born, he was desperate, and fearful for the fate of his family.  In despair he ran out into the highway, intending to ask the first person he met to be his baby’s godparent.  

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The Robber Bridegroom

Once upon a time there was a miller and his wife who had a lovely daughter named Letta. Not long after she came of age, a suitor arrived at the mill, asking for Letta to be his wife. The suitor appeared very rich, and the millers could find no fault with him, so they gladly promised their daughter to him. They were a poor family, and the millers wanted their daughter to be well provided for.

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