Croker tells a story of a little being, which he calls a Cluricaun,
that haunted the cellar of a Mr. Macarthy, and in a note on this tale
he gives the contents of a letter informing him of another ycleped
Little Wildbean, that haunted the house of a Quaker gentleman named
Harris, and which is precisely the Nis or Boggart. This Wildbean, who
kept to the cellar, would, if one of the servants through negligence
left the beer-barrel running, wedge himself into the cock and stop it,
till some one came to turn it. His dinner used to be left for him in
the cellar, and the cook having, one Friday, left him nothing but part
of a herring and some cold potatoes, she was at midnight dragged out of
her bed, and down the cellar-stairs, and so much bruised that she kept
her bed for three weeks. In order at last to get rid of him, Mr. Harris
resolved to remove, being told that if he went beyond a running stream
the Cluricaun could not follow him. The last cart, filled with empty
barrels and such like, was just moving off, when from the bung-hole of
one of them Wildbean cried out, "Here, master! here we go all
together!" "What!" said Mr. Harris, "dost thou go also?" "Yes, to be
sure, master. Here we go, all together!" "In that case, friend,"
replied Mr. Harris, "let the carts be unloaded; we are just as well
where we are." It is added, that "Mr. Harris died soon after, but it is
said the Cluricaun still haunts the Harris family."
The Little Shoemaker
tell me, Molly," said Mr. Coote to Molly Cogan, as he met her on the
road one day, close to one of the old gateways of Kilmallock, "did you
ever hear of the Cluricaun?"—"Is it the Cluricaun? Why, thin, to be
shure; aften an' aften. Many's the time I h'ard my father, rest his
sowl! tell about 'em over and over agin."—"But did you ever see one,
Molly—did you ever see one yourself?"—"Och! no, I niver seen one in my
life; but my gran'father, that's my father's father, you know, he seen
one, one time, an' cotch him too."—"Caught him! Oh! Molly, tell me how
"Why, thin, I'll tell ye. My gran'father, you see, was
out there above in the bog, dhrawin' home turf, an' the poor ould mare
was tir't afther her day's work, an' the ould man wint out to the
stable to look afther her, an' to see if she was aitin' her hay; an'
whin he come to the stable door there, my dear, he h'ard sumthin'
hammerin', hammerin', hammerin', jist for all the wurld like a
shoemaker makin' a shoe, and whis'lin' all the time the purtiest chune
he iver h'ard in his whole life afore. Well, my gran'father he thought
it was the Cluricaun, an' he sed to himsilf, sez he, 'I'll ketch you,
if I can, an' thin I'll have money enough always.' So he opened the
door very quitely, an' didn't make a taste o' n'ise in the wurld, an'
luked all about, but the niver a bit o' the little man cud he see
anywhare, but he h'ard his hammerin' and whis'lin', an' so he luked and
luked, till at last he seen the little fellow; an' whare was he, do ye
think, but in the girth undher the mare; an' there he was, wid his
little bit ov an apron an him, an' his hammer in his hand, an' a little
red night-cap an his head, an' he makin' a shoe; an he was so busy wid
his work, an' was hammerin' an' whis'lin' so loud, that he niver minded
my gran'father, till he cotch him fast in his hand. 'Faix, I have ye
now,' says he, 'an' I'll niver let ye go till I git yer purse—that's
what I won't; so give it here at onst to me, now.' 'Stop, stop,' says
the Cluricaun; 'stop, stop,' says he, 'till I get it for ye.' So my
gran'father, like a fool, ye see, opened his hand a little, an' the
little weeny chap jumped away laughin', an' he niver seen him any more,
an' the divil a bit o' the purse did he git; only the Cluricaun left
his little shoe that he was makin'. An' my gran'father was mad enough
wid himself for lettin' him go; but he had the shoe all his life, an'
my own mother tould me she aftin seen it, an' had it in her hand; an'
'twas the purtiest little shoe she ivir seen."—"An' did you see it
yourself, Molly?"—"Oh! no, my dear, 'twas lost long afore I was born;
but my mother tould me aftin an' aftin enough."