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p. 194



IN Esthonia, as elsewhere, we meet with many stories of hidden treasure, frequently in connection with devils, and hence we place this section next to the Devil-stories. The stories of “The Courageous Barn-keeper” and of the “Gallows Dwarfs” are curious and interesting; those which follow are given here only in abstract. In all countries which have been devastated by war, traditions on hidden treasure are common. I remember once reading a story in a newspaper (but I do not know if the report was true) of a quantity of coins of Edward the Confessor and Harold being dug up in a field respecting which there was a tradition in the neighbourhood that a great treasure was concealed in it. In Esthonian as well as in Oriental tales, hidden treausures are usually under the care of non-human guardians, even when it is not said that they were specially placed under their protection. This notion p. 195 probably persists in many countries to the present day. It is said that when Kidd, the famous pirate, buried a hoard of treasure, he used to slaughter a negro at the place, that the ghost might guard it. Stories of his hidden treasure (more or less probable) are still rife in America.