Tales Of A Traveller, By Washington Irving

 -  Some dark oaken room,
with ugly wo-begone portraits that stare dismally at one, and about
which the housekeeper has - Page 8
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Some Dark Oaken Room, With Ugly Wo-Begone Portraits That Stare Dismally At One, And About Which The Housekeeper Has A Power Of Delightful Stories Of Love And Murder.

And then a dim lamp, a table with a rusty sword across it, and a spectre all in white to draw aside one's curtains at midnight - "

"In truth," said an old gentleman at one end of the table, "you put me in mind of an anecdote - "

"Oh, a ghost story! a ghost story!" was vociferated round the board, every one edging his chair a little nearer.

The attention of the whole company was now turned upon the speaker. He was an old gentleman, one side of whose face was no match for the other. The eyelid drooped and hung down like an unhinged window shutter. Indeed, the whole side of his head was dilapidated, and seemed like the wing of a house shut up and haunted. I'll warrant that side was well stuffed with ghost stories.

There was a universal demand for the tale.

"Nay," said the old gentleman, "it's a mere anecdote - and a very commonplace one; but such as it is you shall have it. It is a story that I once heard my uncle tell when I was a boy. But whether as having happened to himself or to another, I cannot recollect. But no matter, it's very likely it happened to himself, for he was a man very apt to meet with strange adventures. I have heard him tell of others much more singular.

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