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position ; was always ready witli a smart answer, and
if any attempted to raise the laugh at his expense,
seldom or ever did he fail to turn it against his
There are various other versions of the manner in
which he became possessed of the power of divination.
According to one — His mistress, the farmer's wife, was
unusually exacting with him, and he, in return, con-
tinually teased, and, on many occasions, expended much
of his natural wit upon her, much to her annoyance and
chagrin. Latterly, his conduct became so unbearable
that she decided upon disposing of him in a manner
which would ^save her any future annoyance. On one
occasion, his master having sent him away to cut peats,
which in those days were, as they now are in more re-
mote districts, the common article of fuel, it was neces-
sary to send him his dinner, he being too far from the
house to come home to his meals, and the farmer's wife
so far carried out her intention of destroying him,
that she poisoned his dinner. It was somewhat late in
arriving, and the future prophet feeling exhausted from
his honest exertions in his master's interest and from
want of food, lay down on the heath and fell into a
heavy slumber. Tn this position he was suddenly
awakened by feeling something cold in his breast,
which on examination he found to be a small white
stone, with a hole through the centre. He looked
through it, when a vision appeared to him which revealed
the treachery and diabolical intention of his mistress.
To test the truth of the vision, he gave the dinner in-
tended for himself to his faithful collie ; the poor brute
writhed, and died soon after in the greatest agony.

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