: BIRDS AND BEASTS.
A white horse figures in the superstition of school children. When the
writer was a lad in school at Llanidloes, it was believed that if a white
horse were met in the morning it was considered lucky, and should the boy
who first saw the horse spit on the ground, and stealthily make the sign
of a cross with his toe across the spittle, he was certain to find a coin
on the road, or have a piece of money given to him before the day wa
over; but he was not to divulge to anyone what he had done, and for the
working of the charm it was required that he should make sure that the
horse was perfectly white, without any black hairs in any part of the
In Welshpool a like superstition prevails. Mr. Copnall, the master of
the Boys' National School in that town, has kindly supplied me with the
following account of this matter:--It is lucky to meet a white horse on
the road, if, when you meet it, you spit three times over your little
finger; if you neglect this charm you will be unlucky. I asked the
children if it signified whether it was the little finger on the right or
left hand; some boys said the left, but the majority said it made no
difference which hand.
It was said that horses could see spirits, and that they could never be
induced to proceed as long as the spirit stood before them. They
perspired and trembled whilst the spirit blocked the way, but when it had
disappeared, then the horses would go on.