Thursday, January 28, 2010
From Phantasms of the Living by Edmund Gurney, Frederic Myers, and Frank Podmore, Chapter VI "Transference of Ideas and Mental Pictures."
The first account was given to us by Miss Charlotte E. Squire, then residing at Feltham Hill, Middlesex (now Mrs. Fuller Maitland).
"October 6th, 1852.
"There is a curious story that M. Woodley de Cerjat wanted you to know. I believe he wrote it to Dickens to tell you again. However, I may as well repeat it.
"A young lady, a friend of M. Cerjat's, who had been with her family at Lausanne, was taken ill at Berne with typhus fever. Her doctor found her one day in a lucid interval (she was generally delirious), but no sooner had he touched her hand than she seemed to pass into an extraordinary state, and cried out, 'Oh that poor child! that poor little boy! why did you cut his head open? How is he now? 'The doctor, astonished, replied, 'I left him well; I hope he will recover,' and tried to calm the patient. But when he got out of the room, he said, 'That was the most extraordinary thing I ever knew in my life. I am come from trepanning a boy whose head had been injured, but there was no human means by which Miss could have known it, as I am only this moment come direct from the boy here, and no one knew of the accident, nor had Miss 's nurse ever left the room.' The explanation seems to be that the touch of the doctor's hand threw the young lady into clairvoyance. She is since dead, and M. de Cerjat attended her funeral."
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