[Footnote 10: The Story of my Life (Allen & Unwin).]
THE GHOST OF MAJOR SYDENHAM
By JOSEPH GLANVIL
Concerning the apparition of the Ghost of Major George Sydenham, (late of Dulverton in the County of Somerset) to Captain William Dyke, late of Skilgate in this County also, and now likewise deceased: Be pleased to take the Relation of it as I have it from the worthy and learned Dr Tho. Dyke, a near kinsman of the Captain’s, thus: Shortly after the Major’s Death, the Doctor was desired to come to the House, to take care of a Child that was there sick, and in his way thither he called on the Captain, who was very willing to wait on him to the place, because he must, as he said, have gone thither that night, though he had not met with so encouraging an opportunity. After their arrival there at the House, and the Civility of the People shewn them in that Entertainment, they were seasonably conducted to their Lodging, which they desired might be together in the same Bed: Where after they had lain a while, the Captain knocked, and bids the Servant bring him two of the largest and biggest Candles lighted that he could get. Whereupon the Doctor enquires what he meant by this? The Captain answers, You know Cousin what Disputes my Major and I have had touching the Being of a God, and the Immortality of the Soul; in which points we could never yet be resolv’d, though we so much sought for and desired it; and therefore it was at length fully agreed between us, That he of us that died first, should the third Night after his Funeral, between the Hours of Twelve and one, come to the little House that is here in the Garden, and there give a full account to the Survivor touching these Matters, who should be sure to be present there at the set time, and so receive a full satisfaction; and this, says the Captain, is the very Night, and I am come on purpose to fulfil my promise. The Doctor dissuaded him, minding him of the danger of following those strange Counsels, for which we could have no Warrant, and that the Devil might by some cunning Device make such an advantage of this rash attempt, as might work his utter Ruin. The Captain replies, That he had solemnly engag’d, and that nothing should discourage him, and adds, that if the Doctor would wake awhile with him, he would thank him, if not, he might compose himself to his rest; but for his own part he was resolv’d to watch, that he might be sure to be present at the Hour appointed: To that purpose he sets his watch by him, and as soon as he perceived by it that it was half an Hour past 11, he rises, and taking a Candle in each Hand, goes out by a back-door, of which he had before gotten the Key, and walks to the Garden-house, where he continued two hours and a half, and at his return declared, that he had neither saw not heard any thing more than what was usual. But I know, said he, that my Major would surely have come, had he been able.