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Old 11-17-2011, 06:41 AM   #1
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Carleton, William: The Evil Eye. V1. 17 Nov 2011

William Carleton (20 February 1794, Prillisk, Clogher, County Tyrone — 30 January 1869, Sandford, County Dublin) was an Irish novelist.

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THERE IS very little to be said about this book in the shape of a preface. The superstition of the Evil Eye is, and has been, one of the most general that ever existed among men. It may puzzle philosophers to ask why it prevails wherever mankind exists. There is not a country on the face of the earth where a belief in the influence of the Evil Eye does not prevail. In my own young days it was a settled dogma of belief. I have reason to know, however, that, like other superstitions, it is fast fading out of the public mind. Education and knowledge will soon banish those idle and senseless superstitions: indeed, it is a very difficult thing to account for their existence at all. I think some of them have come down to us from the times of the Druids,—a class of men whom, excepting what is called their human sacrifices, I respect. My own opinion is, that what we term human sacrifices was nothing but their habitual mode of executing criminals. Toland has written on the subject and left us very little the wiser. Who could, after all, give us information upon a subject which to us is only like a dream?
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