Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Devil dog

With the discovery of a large canine skeleton at a dig in East Anglia, England, there is speculation that it is the very creature which terrorized the residents in the 16th c. The remains were found in an abbey situated only a few miles from 2 churches in which the folkloric Black Shuck is said to have killed worshippers during a raging thunderstorm in 1577. One attack was described at the time by clergyman Abraham Fleming, who wrote, "This black dog, or the divel in such a likenesse (God hee knoweth al who worketh all,) running all along down the body of the church with great swiftnesse, and incredible haste, among the people, in a visible fourm and shape, passed between two persons, as they were kneeling uppon their knees, and occupied in prayer as it seemed, wrung the necks of them bothe at one instant clene backward, in somuch that even at a moment where they kneeled, they strangely dyed." Planned radiocarbon dating may not solve the mystery. It is possible that the skeleton is that of the legendary black-haired dog with flaming eyes whose footfalls could not be heard. Then again, the grave could be that of the abbot’s beloved old hunting dog.

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