Many people will object—some have already objected—to the subject of this book. It is an offence to some to take a ghost too seriously; with others it is a still greater offence not to take ghosts seriously enough. One set of objections can be paired off against the other; neither objection has very solid foundation. The time has surely come when the fair claim of ghosts to the impartial attention and careful observation of mankind should no longer be ignored. In earlier times people believed in them so much that they cut their acquaintance; in later times people believe in them so little that they will not even admit their existence. Thus these mysterious visitants have hitherto failed to enter into that friendly relation with mankind which many of them seem sincerely to desire.
--he is running in an opposite direction to the horse in many circuits--not on any footpaths. He wears a cap and grey clothes--light--has long coarse brown hair, which has not been cut for a long time--grey-blue eyes--treacherous looks--great dark brown beard--he is accustomed to work on the land. I believe he has cut his right hand. He has a scar or a streak between his thumb and forefinger. He is suspicious and a coward.
"'The murderer's home is a red wooden house, standing a little way back from the road. On the ground-floor is a room which leads into the kitchen, and from that again into the passage. There is also a larger room which does not communicate with the kitchen. The church of Wissefjerda is situated obliquely to your right when you are standing in the passage.
"'His motive was enmity; it seems as if he had bought something--taken something--a paper. He went away from home at daybreak, and the murder was committed in the evening.'
"Miss Olsen was then awakened, and like all my subjects, she remembered perfectly what she had been seeing, which had made a very profound impression on her; she added several things which I did not write down.
"On November 6th (Monday) I met Miss Ol