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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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PROVERB

CON'SCIENCE TAKES UP MORE ROOM THAN ALL THE REST OF A PERSONS
INSIDES-HUCKLEBERRY FINN

Where learned: THEOLOGY CLASS

James Callow Keyword(s): MARK TWAIN

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor
PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 00-00-1963

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IN THIS INFORMANTS FAMILY
SOME OF THE CHILDREN HAVE A SMALL BROWN FRECKLE
OR BEAUTY MARK UNDER EACH EYE.
IT IS SAID THAT THESE ARE TEARS
BECAUSE THEY CAME INTO THE WORLD ON A SAD DAY.
IT IS ALSO SAID "MONDAY'S CHILD IS FULL OF WOE,"
AND THESE SAME CHILDREN WERE BORN ON MONDAY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; SOUTHGATE

Keyword(s): BEAUTY MARKS ; FRECKLES ; WOE

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Specific distinguishing characteristic Dimple, wart, mole, scar, freckle, birthmark, strawberry mark, bruise, spot (on any part of body)
BELIEF -- Birth
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour

Date learned: 10-00-1971

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SUPERSTIYIOUS BELIEF

I HAVE A BIRTHMARK ON MY CHEEK.
WHICH MY MOTHER ATTRIBUTED TO HAVING EATEN STRAWBERRIES
BEFORE SHE KNEW SHE WAS PREGNANT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; FARMINGTON

Keyword(s): BIRTHMARKS ; CONTAGIOUS MAGIC ; FOOD ; PREGNANCY

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses Specific distinguishing characteristic Dimple, wart, mole, scar, freckle, birthmark, strawberry mark, bruise, spot (on any part of body)
BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 11-29-1969

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OUR FAMILY DOCTOR HAS A LARGE BIRTH MARK ON THE SIDE OF HIS FACE.
IT WAS SAID THAT WHILE HIS MOTHER WAS PREGNANT WITH HIM THERE
WAS A FIRE AND HIS MOTHER RAISED HER HAND TO HER FACE. THIS
CAUSED THE BIRTH MARK ON HIS FACE IN THE SAME PLACE WHERE THE
MOTHER HAD TOUCHED HER FACE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; WARREN

Keyword(s): MARKS BROUGHT ABOUT BY FEAR.

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC ; HOMEOPATHIC MAGIC

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Physically handicapped Deformed
BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 01-00-1968

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Entry filtered.

POLISH JOKE

Historical record from James Callow Folklore Archive.

DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THE POLISH ATHLETE WHO WON A GOLD MEDAL AT THE
OLYMPICS SO HE WENT OUT AND HAD IT BRONZED?

James Callow comment:

IN EARLY 1980 THE PRICE OF GOLD WAS SKYROCKETING, REACHING ALL-TIME
HIGHS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; SOUTHFIELD

James Callow Keyword(s): IT'S ALSO FALLEN, IN AN UNSTABLE MARKET.

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Poli

Date learned: 02-00-1980

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Custom/Belief

Craving of Pregnant Woman:

If a pregnant woman has a craving for something and does not get it, the baby will have a birthmark resembling the food that was craved.

Submitter comment:

Informant is a friend's mother, and she remembers this from all her life.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original BN [P800] crossed out. Replaced with current classification

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; FERNDALE

Keyword(s): BABY ; Birthmark ; Craving ; Craving ; Disfigure ; FOOD ; Lore ; Old Wives Tale ; PREGNANCY

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition

Belief:

A pregnant woman should avoid being scared or shocked because this will disfigure or mark the baby.

Examples:

1. During a fire, a terrified pregnant woman grabbed her face with her hands and the baby was born with a red streak on its face.

2. A pregnant woman was scared by a mouse, and her baby was born with a marking on its shoulder similar to a mouse.

Submitter comment:

The informant heard of these two instances while she as a young girl in Poland.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; Biology ; BIRTH ; Birthmark ; CHILD ; FEAR ; FIRE ; Mouse ; Offspring ; Old Wives Tale ; PREGNANCY ; RODENT ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition

If a pregnant woman is frightened by fire, the baby will have a red or purple birthmark.

Submitter comment:

Belief: Means of Cursing

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original BN [P740] crossed out. Replaced with current classification

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): BABY ; BIRTH ; Birthmark ; CHILD ; COLOR ; CURSE ; FEAR ; FIRE ; jinx ; Offspring ; Old Wives Tale ; Purple ; Red ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition

Pregnancy Superstition:

If a pregnant woman is frightened her baby will be born marked in some way.

Submitter comment:

This is a superstition common in the Oswald family

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BABY ; BELIEF ; Birthmark ; CHILD ; CURSE ; FEAR ; jinx ; Mark ; Offspring ; PREGNANCY ; Scare ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition

My grandmother has a mark, which she calls a "fire mark" on her upper arm. It is oddly similar ro a birthmark, bu this is the story of its origin according to my grandmother:

When her mother was pregnant with her, there was a fire in the Russion town where they lived. Her mother went out to look at it, and the night was quite cold. She grasped her upper arm because of this cold, and so my grandmother was born with a mark in the same place her mother had held her arm.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original BN [P840] crossed out. Replaced with current classification.

Where learned: Myself

Keyword(s): BABY ; BIRTH ; Birthmark ; Cold ; CURSE ; FEAR ; FIRE ; jinx ; Offspring ; Russia ; Scare ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition

Superstition:

Pregnant women should not look at strawberries because then their children will develop red blotches on themselves (which look like strawberries).

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original BN [P740] crossed out. replaced with current classification

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): BABY ; BIRTH ; Birthmark ; CURSE ; jinx ; Mark ; Offspring ; Old Wives Tale ; PREGNANCY ; STRAWBERRY ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition: Pregnancy

When you're pregnant is you see a fire there will be a mark on your child.

Data entry tech comment:

motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original BN [P870] crossed out. Replaced with P542

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DEARBORN HEIGHTS

Keyword(s): Birthmark ; CHILD ; CURSE ; FIRE ; Mark ; Offspring ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition

"Mouse"

My brother has a birthmark on his thigh. But my grandmother refuses to believe that it did not come about inthis way: She says that when my mother was pregnant a mouse must have frightened her and she must have grabbed her leg at the thigh, in the place where my brother has the "mouse." Her proof is that my uncle has the same kind of mark in the same place on his leg, and she is sure that she was scared by a mouse when pregnant with him.

Data entry tech comment:

motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original BN [P840] crossed out and replaced with current classification.

Where learned: Myself

Keyword(s): BIRTH ; Birthmark ; CHILD ; CURSE ; FEAR ; Mouse ; Offspring ; Scare ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition: Pregnancy

Remedy:

If a woman is frightened during her pregnancy, the child will have a birth mark.

Submitter comment:

Learned at home on the farm.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BABY ; BELIEF ; Birth Mark ; CHILD ; CURSE ; FEAR ; Frightened ; Offspring ; PREGNANCY ; SUPERSTITION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Remedy

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Superstition: Pregnancy

Birth Marks:

After giving borth to a child, an Italian woman will ask the doctor, "are there any marks?" Immediately, if there were any, they would disappear.

Submitter comment:

This is another Italian "in" story

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P740.542, F542] crossed out. Replaced with current classification

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): BABY ; BIRTH ; Birth Mark ; CURE ; CURSE ; Delivery ; ETHNIC ; Italian ; PREGNANCY ; REMEDY

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

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Superstition: Pregnancy

Birthmarks:

Mother always said "if a child was born with a birthmark, to do this, before the child got into the bath or anything." Take the afterbirth, the sack the baby grows in, take the lining from the sack and rub the baby all over with that. The skin would come out clean and the birthmark would be gone.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P720, P760.750] crossed out. Replaced wtih current classifications

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Afterbirth ; BABY ; BIRTH ; Birth Mark ; CURE ; CURSE ; Delivery ; Labor ; Newborn ; Placenta ; PREGNANCY ; REMEDY

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Remedy

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Autograph Rhyme

Yours till Niagara Falls

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Keyword(s): AUTOGRAPH ; Landmark ; NIAGARA FALLS ; PLAY ON WORDS ; PUN ; Signature ; VERSE

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Verse without Music

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Autograph Rhyme

Yours till the Mississippi runs dry.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Keyword(s): AUTOGRAPH ; Landmark ; Mississippi ; PLAY ON WORDS ; PUN ; River ; Signature ; WORD PLAY

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Verse without Music

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Retort

Wise Guy?

What are you? A wise guy or a truck driver?

(Question and answer given to someone who has made a wise remark.)

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs Added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [W400] crossed out. Replaced with current classification.

Class?

What's the answer?

Keyword(s): Answer ; Language ; QUESTION ; Remark ; RETORT ; SLANG ; Truck Driver ; Wise Guy

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

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Retort

A Teacher's Remarks:

If I want any crap outta you I'll squeeze your head.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs Added By TRD

James Callow comment:

Retort? S570? Taste?

Original Bn [S520] crossed out. replaced with current classification.

Where learned: UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT HIGH SCHOOL

Keyword(s): Crap ; EUPHEMISM ; HEAD ; Remark ; RETORT ; Saying ; SLANG ; TEACHER

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

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