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Historical Mysteries   By: (1844-1912)

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First Page:

HISTORICAL MYSTERIES

BY

ANDREW LANG

WITH A FRONTISPIECE

SECOND EDITION

LONDON SMITH, ELDER, & CO., 15 WATERLOO PLACE 1905

[All rights reserved]

[Illustration: William Smith 1754 Pinx. Mac Ardell. Mezzo.

Elizabeth Canning.

London: Smith, Elder & Co., 15 Waterloo Place, S.W.]

PREFACE

These Essays, which appeared, with two exceptions, in The Cornhill Magazine , 1904, have been revised, and some alterations, corrections, and additions have been made in them. 'Queen Oglethorpe,' in which Miss Alice Shield collaborated, doing most of the research, is reprinted by the courteous permission of the editor, from Blackwood's Magazine . A note on 'The End of Jeanne de la Motte,' has been added as a sequel to 'The Cardinal's Necklace:' it appeared in The Morning Post , the Editor kindly granting leave to republish.

The author wishes to acknowledge the able assistance of Miss E.M. Thompson, who made researches for him in the British Museum and at the Record Office.

CONTENTS

PAGE

I. THE CASE OF ELIZABETH CANNING 1

II. THE MURDER OF ESCOVEDO 32

III. THE CAMPDEN MYSTERY 55

IV. THE CASE OF ALLAN BRECK 75

V. THE CARDINAL'S NECKLACE 99

VI. THE MYSTERY OF KASPAR HAUSER: THE CHILD OF EUROPE 118

VII. THE GOWRIE CONSPIRACY 143

VIII. THE STRANGE CASE OF DANIEL DUNGLAS HOME 170

IX. THE CASE OF CAPTAIN GREEN 193

X. QUEEN OGLETHORPE ( in collaboration with Miss Alice Shield ) 214

XI. THE CHEVALIER D'ÉON 238

XII. SAINT GERMAIN THE DEATHLESS 256

XIII. THE MYSTERY OF THE KIRKS 277

XIV. THE END OF JEANNE DE LA MOTTE 297

PORTRAIT OF ELIZABETH CANNING. Frontispiece.

HISTORICAL MYSTERIES

I

THE CASE OF ELIZABETH CANNING

Don't let your poor little Lizzie be blamed!

THACKERAY.

'Everyone has heard of the case of Elizabeth Canning,' writes Mr. John Paget; and till recently I agreed with him. But five or six years ago the case of Elizabeth Canning repeated itself in a marvellous way, and then but few persons of my acquaintance had ever heard of that mysterious girl.

The recent case, so strange a parallel to that of 1753, was this: In Cheshire lived a young woman whose business in life was that of a daily governess. One Sunday her family went to church in the morning, but she set off to skate, by herself, on a lonely pond. She was never seen of or heard of again till, in the dusk of the following Thursday, her hat was found outside of the door of her father's farmyard. Her friend discovered her further off in a most miserable condition, weak, emaciated, and with her skull fractured. Her explanation was that a man had seized her on the ice, or as she left it, had dragged her across the fields, and had shut her up in a house, from which she escaped, crawled to her father's home, and, when she found herself unable to go further, tossed her hat towards the farm door. Neither such a man as she described, nor the house in which she had been imprisoned, was ever found. The girl's character was excellent, nothing pointed to her condition being the result d'une orgie échevelée ; but the neighbours, of course, made insinuations, and a lady of my acquaintance, who visited the girl's mother, found herself almost alone in placing a charitable construction on the adventure.

My theory was that the girl had fractured her skull by a fall on the ice, had crawled to and lain in an unvisited outhouse of the farm, and on that Thursday night was wandering out, in a distraught state, not wandering in. Her story would be the result of her cerebral condition concussion of the brain... Continue reading book >>




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