Excerpt from Mary Anerley: A Yorkshire Tale
Far from any house or hut, in the depth of dreary moorland, a road, unfenced and almost unformed, descends to a rapid river. The crossing is called the "Seven Corpse Ford," because a large party of farmers, riding homeward from Middleton, banded together and perhaps well-primed through fear of a famous highwayman, came down to this place on a foggy evening, after heavy rainfall. One of the company set before them what the power of the water was, but they laughed at him and spurred into it, and one alone spurred out of it. Whether taken with fright, or with too much courage, they laid hold of one another, and seven out of eight of them, all large farmers, and thoroughly understanding land, came never upon it alive again; and their bodies, being found upon the ridge that cast them up, gave a dismal name to a place that never was merry in the best of weather.
However, worse things than this had happened; and the country is not chary of its living, though apt to be scared of its dead; and so the ford came into use again, with a little attempt at improvement.
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