10/31/13

On Ghost Stories

“I CAN claim to be tolerably detached on the subject of ghost stories. I do not depend upon them in any way; not even in the sordid professional way, in which I have at some periods depended on murder stories. I do not much mind whether they are true or not. I am not, like a Spiritualist, a man whose religion may said to consist entirely of ghosts. But I am not like a Materialist, a man whose whole philosophy is exploded and blasted and blown to pieces by the most feeble and timid intrusion of the most thin and third-rate ghost. I am quite ready to believe that a number of ghosts were merely turnip ghosts, elaborately prepared to deceive the village idiot. But I am not at all certain that they succeeded even in that; and I suspect that their greatest successes were elsewhere. For it is my experience that the village idiot is very much less credulous than the town lunatic. On the other hand, when the merely skeptical school asks us to believe that every sort of ghost has been a turnip ghost, I think such skeptics rather exaggerate the variety and vivacity and theatrical talent of turnips.”

~G.K. Chesterton:  Illustrated London News, May 30, 1936.

1 comment:

  1. A.G Gardner (Alfa of the Plough) was a great writer and Journalist. I was 17 years old when I read his book back in the 1950(s). His style of writing was very unique coupled with a sense of humor. Riaz Hasan Catonsville MD, U.S

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