1900 (pub): Cooling off a Water-Horse

        A Scotswoman named Sarah was at home alone, and had just set some water to boil in a clay vessal, when a water-horse in man's shape entered the house. After watching her activity for some time, the water-horse approached her, snuffling "It is time to begin courting, Sarah, daughter of John, son of Finlay." Sarah replied "it is time, it is time... when the little pitcher boils." After a while the water-horse drew closer, repeating it's demand, and she once again stalled it off; this continued until the water was boiling. As the water-horse drew uncomfortably close to her with the same demand, Sarah picked up the small pot of boiling water and splashed it between the ardent courter's legs... and, not surprisingly, he ran out of the house yelling in pain.

My Source

        This tale was published in 1900 by John Gregorson Campbell as part of a study of the superstitions of Scotland, and closely resembles another tale published earlier in 1887 (see link below). Other than being told that the rude courter was in fact a dangerous water-horse -- a well-known Scottish lake monster -- there would really be no difference to the story if it was just a rude young man... and maybe, as far as warning young ladies how to handle such things, that's the whole point.

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