Thursday, October 7, 2010

Black Shuck

Black Shuck (also known as Old Shuck, Padfoot, Skriker, and Black Shag) is a black phantom dog rumored by legend to live along the Norfolk, Essex and Suffolk coastline in the UK.

The name and concept of Black Shuck isn't unique to one case, however, as the term is seen in many different legends and stories throughout the British isles.  Tales of enormous Hellhound creatures rumored to haunt dark places such as heaths, crossroads, graveyards, and even abandoned towers and castles exist in numerous towns.  They are said to be horrid creatures, often being described as the same height as a horse and covered in matted, pitch black fur and glowing red or green eyes.  Although they are sometimes described as being headless, or having the ability to run atop a black mist.  (Or in layman's terms, being totally badass.)

One notable account of Black Shuck comes from August 4th, 1577 at Blythburgh, a church in Suffolk.   Black Shuck is said to have rampaged through the church, killing a man and a child and causing the church steeple to collapse.  To this day scorch marks exist on the northern door which are said to have been burned into the wood by the dog.  Reverend Abraham Fleming filed an account of the event:

“This black dog, or the divel in such a linenesse (God hee knoweth al who worketh all,) runing all along down the body of the church with great swiftnesse, and incredible haste, among the people, in a visible fourm and shape, passed between two persons, as they were kneeling uppon their knees, and occupied in prayer as it seemed, wrung the necks of them bothe at one instant clene backward, in somuch that even at a mome[n]t where they kneeled, they stra[n]gely dyed.”

Phantom cats have noting on these things.