Friday, June 29, 2007

Equestrian Hedgehogs

So I'm looking up "chagrin" to make sure I understand the exact meaning, right? I had recently become fond of using because it's such a nifty patchwork of search engine, dictionary, and encyclopedia, so I went there first. The first part was pretty much what I expected, some good bits on the origins of the word, then, farther down, I find:

An evil spirit believed in by European Gypsies. It was said to have the form of a hedgehog, to be yellow in color, and to be about a foot and a half in length. Heinrich von Wlislocki stated: "I am certain, that this creature is none other than the equally demoniac being called Harginn, still believed in by the inhabitants of Northwestern India. Horses were the special prey of the Chagrin, who rode them into a state of exhaustion, like the Guecubu of Chile." ...

Wow. It's not just embarassment; it's a demonic hedgehog. How cool is that?