Editor’s Introduction to the Online Text of
The Church Treasury of History, Custom, Folk-Lore, etc.
Edited by William Andrews.
This is the third book on Elfinspell that was edited by William Andrews, who ran his own small press in England in the late nineteenth century. As usual, it is gold mine of interesting trivia on the antiquities of churches and their customs.
Alarmingly, there is a chapter on Human Skin On Church Doors!
Eerily, there is also a goosebumpish chapter on Ghost-Layers.
Sweetly, this fact is now indelibly notched in my memory: St. Anthony is the patron saint of swine-herders, so a pig is his symbol. As a result, the littlest pig in a litter is called the Anthony pig. A much better description than “runt.”
And there are lots of other goodies to discover in this collection of studies by the part-time antiquarians of the Victorian Age.
The copy of the book that I have, was discarded from St. John’s Episcopal Church Library, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. (Side-Rant: Do not think any books you donate will be kept for long. They are often given away to book dealers for free, according to a book-dealer in Boston who gets stacks of books from Harvard. Then those smart guys sell them to the likes of me.)
Begin with the frontispiece, which is an engraving of the Shrine of St. Edward the Confessor.