It Doesn’t Necessarily Have to be April 1st …

A Most Singular Circumstance…

… occurred at Mr Brooks’s, the surgeon, in Blenheim street on Saturday evening: – A coach stopped at the door where subjects are received, and a body in a sack was deposited on the top of the stairs, leading to the dissecting room. The coachman and their assistants made their bow as usual upon such occasions and left the subject.  Mr Brooks happened to be present, and he asked one of his men why he did not tumble the body down the stairs.

The man, in compliance with his master’s mandate, began to perform his work, by fastening hold of the end of the sack, and having got down two steps, a living subject threw his naked arms and shoulders out, and begged for his life…

Pencil Drawing Ford Maddox Brown n.d

The account he gave of himself was, that he had come from Teddington,  Middlesex, that day; that he had got so drunk he did not know how he came there… 

He was conveyed away to Needham, by a Constable, to the watch-house in a coach. [On] Monday he was examined at the Marlborough Street Police Office, but Mr Brooks, it seems, does not intend following up the prosecution… as it turns out to have been altogether a hoax. The man, Morgan (who was in the sack) it seems, is a sort  of ‘caddee’ to a body of Resurrection Men, and according to his own confession, he was prevailed upon to become the dupe of their fun’ 

An Event which befell two disturbers of the Dead…

Oxnam Church – Borders
‘Two Resurrection Men were about to commence work when one of them expressed some fears about the horse and cart, and the other expressed his regret that they had no-one to stand by the horse. A chilling fear struck upon them, when an elfin groom rose, apparently from the dead, and skipping across the grave, exclaimed –

          ‘oh, I’ll haud the horse, lads!!’ 

Another stride, which terror greatly lengthened, raised him upon a new turfed grave, affording an increased stature – terror seized the despoiler, and like maniacs, they flew they knew not whither. The urchin goblin was no other than a mischievous youngster, who, to save himself from a merited drubbing, had fled from home and had taken up his quarters for the night under one of the table tomb stones… He now marched homeward with an excellent cart and horse which, of course, were never claimed…’ 

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