Joan the Wad


Joan the Wad
   A Cornish name for a *Will-o'-the-Wisp, originally limited to the area round Polperro, where it was noted by Jonathan Crouch in his history of the town; 'wad' is a dialect word for a torch. Besides leading people astray with her light, she sometimes tickled and pinched them, so Crouch classified her as a *pixy. A rhyme invoked her aid:
   Jack o' the lantern! Joan the wad,
   Who tickled the maid and made her mad!
   Light me home, the weather's bad.

A Dictionary of English folklore. . 2014.

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