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p. 184


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p. 185



THOUGH the witches used to be pretty lively in other places, they were fond of climbing up and down the cross that stands by the road to Malá Čermá (near Slaný). Joe Hilma heard tell of this, so he took his horse and off he rode to see. He took with him a piece of chalk which had been blessed, and made a circle with it. Then he went into the circle and waited till midnight. Then, sure enough, he saw the witches, a great swarm of them, climbing up and down the cross. They didn't see him while this was going on, but when he rode out of the circle, off went the witches after him. He galloped home at full speed. When he rode into the yard they were close on his heels. They couldn't go any farther, for they had no power to do it. I don't know how it happened, but one of them flung a burning broom after him. The broom hit the door, and the door was burned. Joe had quite enough of seeing the witches.

Next: 22. The Witch and the Horseshoes