The Mayor of Gantick


The villagers of Gantick elect a simpleton, who works as a ‘hollibubber’ in the slate quarries of Lanihorne, to be their ‘mock-mayor’ at the 12 July celebration on Dragon Moor. He has to arbitrate on various local disputes, which he does with remarkable sagacity. With the ‘dragon’ slain for another year in propitiation for the sins of the villagers, the ‘mock-mayor’ has a convulsion and is taken home by his mother. At 9 pm he dies. His mother lays him out, fills the cottage with turf smoke and asphyxiates herself by his side.