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Domestic Folk-lore by Dyer, T. F. Thiselton (Thomas Firminger Thiselton), b. 1848

Domestic Folk-lore by Dyer, T. F. Thiselton (Thomas Firminger Thiselton), b. 1848

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Published by: 9e94967d on May 16, 2012
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DOMESTIC FOLK-LOKE.BYREV. T. F. THISELTON DYER, M.A., Oxox.,Author of "British Popular Customs" and "EnglishFolk-lore."SECOND EDITION.Cassell, Fetter, Galpin & Co.LOXLOX, PAX IS f NE1F YORK.[all rights reserved.]6FTs
' 1962 "$15052PEEF ACE.For the name " Folk-lore n in its present significa-tion, embracing the Popular Traditions, ProverbialSayings, Superstitions, and Customs of the people, wearc in a great measure indebted to the late editor ofKates and Queries — Mr. W. J. Thorns — who, in ananonymous contribution to the Atherutum of 22ndAugust, 184G, very aptly suggested this comprehensiveterm, which has since been adopted as the recognisedtitle of what has now become an important branch ofantiquarian research.The study of Folk-lore is year by year receiv-ing greater attention, its object being to collect,classify, and preserve survivals of popular belief,and to trace them as far as possible to theiroriginal source. This task is no easy one, as school-boards and railways are fast sweeping away everyvestige of the old beliefs and customs which, in daysgone by, held such a prominent place in social anddomestic life. Tho Fojk-lorist has, also, to deal withremote periods, and to examine the history of talesIV PREFACE.and traditions which have been handed down fromthe distant past and have lost much of their mean-
ing in the lapse of years. But, as a writer in theStandard has pointed out, Folk-lore students treadon no man's toes. " They take up points of historywhich the historian despises, and deal with monumentsmore intangible but infinitely more ancient than thoseabout which Sir John Lubbock is so solicitous. Theyprosper and are happy on the crumbs dropped fromthe tables of the learned, and grow scientifically richon the refuse which less skilful craftsmen toss aside asuseless. The tales with which the nurse wiles hercharge asleep provide for the Folk-lore student asucculent banquet — for he knows that there is scarcelya child's story or a vain thought that may not betraced back to the boyhood of the world, and to thoseprimitive races from which so many polished nationshave sprung."The field of research, too, in which the Folk-loristis engaged is a most extensive one, supplying materialsfor investigation of a wide-spread character. Thushe recognises and, as far as he possibly can, explainsthe smallest item of superstition wherever found, notlimiting his inquiries to any one subject. This, there-fore, whilst enhancing the value of Folk lore as a study,in the same degree increases its interest, since with aperfect impartiality it lays bare superstition as it existsPREFACE. Vamong all classes of society. Whilst condemning, itmay be, the uneducated peasant who places credencein the village fortune-teller or "cunning man," weare apt to forget how oftentimes persons belonging tot...

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