The Miser’s Ghost

All of you, old and young, know the story I’m about to tell. But the moral of this tale cannot be retold too often. Remember that behind it is the terrible lesson of an avenging God who commands the rich to be charitable.

It was New Year’s Eve in the year of Our Lord 1858.

It was dry and biting cold.

The highway along the north bank of the St Lawrence River from Montreal to Berthier lay covered by a thick coat of snow, fallen before Christmas.

The roads were smooth as a Venetian looking-glass. You should have seen how the sons of the rich farmers of the river parishes loved to spur on their frisky horses, racing like the wind to the happy sound of the bells on their silvery harnesses.

“The Miser’s Ghost,” Honoré Beaugrand (1848-1906). Translated from the French by Alberto Manguel. In Alberto Manguel, ed., The Oxford Book of Canadian Ghost Stories (Oxford University Press, 1990).

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Bruce Wishart
Whimsies. Sometimes about writing.
Sometimes about folklore. Sometimes
about the sea, or life on the coast.
And sometimes not.