One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A lambent flame seen just above the ground in a churchyard or over a grave, superstitiously regarded as an omen of death.
- ‘In the old days they called them corpse candles because they were so often seen in cemeteries.’
- ‘While reports of corpse candles have been recorded all over the UK, they are most numerous in Wales, where they are also known as Cannyllau Cyrth.’
- ‘He had not gone much further when he saw a corpse candle moving before him along the road.’
- ‘In Welsh lore, a small, pale or bluish corpse candle presages the death of an infant, while a big light presages the death of an adult.’
- ‘If two corpse candles were seen at the same time this was taken to indicate that two deaths would occur in the same household at about the same time.’
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