Obscure Factoid of Delight: in England for much of the 19th century and into the early 20th, Halloween was also known as Nutcrack Night as it was associated with eating the new season's apples and nuts - and also a time when 'young maids' would play love divination games using nuts in front of blazing fires. If the nut burst in flames it meant your true love had the hots for you, if the nut shattered and spat fragments over the hearth, it meant your lover would be unfaithful. A bit like Tinder but with roasted walnuts. Here's a 1903 vintage invite to a Nutcrack Night party.
Curated by English barrister and Reuters correspondent turned editor, author, award-winning tech journalist, storyteller, and sometime werewolf hunter Charles Christian. He writes, he drinks tea, he knows things. This site also has links to Charles' books and the Weird Tales Show videos and podcasts.
Descended from a motley crew of smugglers and witches, Christian was born a chime-child with a caul and grew up in a haunted medieval house by the harbourside in the Yorkshire seaside town of Scarborough.
According to folklore a caul-shrouded chime-child can't drown at sea but can see and talk to faerie folk and also has protection against spells cast by malevolent sorcerers. And yes, he was once commissioned to go on a werewolf hunt on the night of a full moon by a newspaper. Spoiler alert: he didn't find one. (Or it didn't find him.)
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