Monday, 15 December 2008

Mother Damnable

Mother Damnable, the remarkable Shrew of Kentish Town, the person who gave rife to the sign Mother Red Cap on the Hamstead Road near London. Legend has it that she was a woman called Jinny who died in mysterious circumstances.

Jinney was born to a peddler brick maker and traveled with her mother throughout her childhood. She bore her first child at the age of sixteen to Gipsy George, shortly after their marriage Gipsy was tried for sheep theft and hung, many an unfortunate ended his days swinging from the gibbet near what is today Camden Town underground station. Jinny's next suitor was known as Darby, a Jekyll and Hyde drunk who mysteriously disappeared. Around this time Jinny's parents were tried for dark arts and also hung. A year later Jinny associated herself with a man called Pitcher who was found crouched up the oven burnt to a cinder, she was tried for his murder but acquitted as it was known that Pitcher had often hidden in the oven to avoid Jinny's sharp tongue.

Jinny soon became a recluse eventually taking a lodger who was haggard in his countenance and full of trouble. He did however pay his way but soon passed away unexplainably, the town rumour mill reported that harsh words and bumps and bangs were often heard from the house. As Jinny grew older she was baited by local yobs whenever anything unfortunate happened and known as mother Red Cap for the hat she always wore.

She was found dead in front of the fire clutching her crook and a teapot full of herbs, drugs and a liquid. The potion had been given to her cat who after two hours lost all its hair and died. Her body was so stiff that her limbs had to be broken to go into her coffin.

Jinny's ghost is said to haunt the Mother Red Cap, a halfway tavern known today as The Worlds End and Underworld club. There have been numerous sightings and reports of the unusual.

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