This story was published in an old Irish pamphlet called “Strange and Wonderful News”, so it is quite reasonable to mistake it for mere fiction. However, there are too many details in it for fiction.
The annotation to the story states that this “entirely true story” happened in County Wicklow in Ireland to a certain Dr. Moore, who later worked as a teacher in London.
One day, Dr. Moore and his two friends, Richard Uniacke and Laughlin Moore (no relation), gathered in the village of Dromgree to discuss pressing problems. And when they stopped at the hotel for the night and sat at the table having dinner, Moore told them a story about strange things that happened to him as a child, when he lived not far from here.
Moore himself was too young to remember anything at the time, but he knows about the events through the stories of his mother and other relatives. According to them, in childhood, he very often suddenly disappeared somewhere and could not be found anywhere.
The Strange Incident of the Man Named Dr. Moore Who Was Taken by Fairies
The parents believed that the boy was kidnapped by fairies, and after the child disappeared again, they went to an elderly neighbor who was a witch or something like that. This old woman read some spells out loud, after which the child was found, just as unexpectedly as he had disappeared, safe and sound.
Dr. Moore’s friends received this story with great skepticism. Perhaps they, like the doctor, had a good education and were not at all as superstitious as ordinary villagers.
Uniacke even made several logical arguments against the fact that this story was true, which annoyed Dr. Moore so much that he began to assure his friends that he was not lying at all and that was exactly what happened.
And then Dr. Moore suddenly jumped up and said that he had to leave because he had just been “called.” He did not say who called and where, but immediately an unknown force began to lift Dr. Moore into the air and the frightened Uniack and Laughlin grabbed him – one by the hand, the other by the leg.
But the invisible enemy was much stronger and he began to lift Moore along with the two men hanging on him. Out of fear, Laughlin immediately let go of Moore’s leg, but Uniacke continued to hold on. However, after a few seconds, he gave in, and as soon as he let go of the doctor and fell to the floor, Doctor Moore disappeared somewhere. Friends did not even have time to notice whether he was taken out through the window or the hotel door.
Uniacke and Laughlin, both scared to death, ran to the innkeeper and told him what had happened to their friend. At the same time, the innkeeper listened to them as calmly as if he heard about such things regularly.
And then he told them that about a quarter of a mile away there lived a woman who had “wisdom” and could find lost things or people. And he does not doubt that she can help find Doctor Moore.
They immediately sent for the woman and soon she appeared. She was told that about an hour ago, certain forces kidnapped their friend and asked her to find him. The woman immediately said that their missing friend was now about a mile away in the forest, holding a piece of bread in one hand and a glass of wine in the other.
At the same time, she also said that Dr. Moore was very hungry and thirsty, but he could never do this in that forest, otherwise, the disease would attack him and he would not recover until his death.
After that, she began to speak out loud ancient spells, the essence of which was that she was asking Dr. Moore’s ancestors, who lived four generations ago, to help him. And then she talked about what would happen to Dr. Moore next.
She said that the creatures (fairies) who kidnapped him would first take him to a Danish fort, seven miles away, where there would be great fun and dancing, and plenty of food and drink, but spells would protect Moore from temptation. And then he would be dragged even further twenty miles to another fort, where there would also be a great celebration.
Afterward, he will be dragged to the fort of seven churches, but since Moore will not touch forbidden drinks and meat there either, by morning he will be returned to the people alive and unharmed. After that, the woman said goodbye and left.
At six in the morning, someone knocked at the hotel. When the door was opened, Doctor Moore stood on the threshold, tormented by extreme thirst and hunger. When he was fed and drunk, he said that at the moment when he was kidnapped, he saw about twenty humanoid creatures burst into the room. Some were on foot, and some were on horseback. And they grabbed him, tore him from the hands of his friends, and dragged him into the forest.
There they sat him on a horse, put bread in one hand, wine in the other, and offered him something to drink and eat. And then they were transported all night from one celebration to another. But when he tried to eat or drink something, the food and drinks simply flew out of his hands.
He described the creatures he saw at night as many large and slender men and women who loved to dance to music and held sumptuous feasts in the forts. When dawn came, somehow Dr. Moore found himself alone near the hotel from where he was kidnapped.
A little later, Richard Uniacke, tormented by great curiosity, went to the very Danish fort that the witch mentioned. And he discovered on the grass, among the ruins of an ancient fort, a huge circle, trampled down so hard, as if 500 people had recently danced in it.
Upon returning, Uniacke told his friends about this discovery, and later confirmed his story in the presence of the local Doctor Murphy and Mr. Ludlow, one of the six clerks of the high court of chancery. It was November 18, 1678.
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