Ozark Encyclopedia – M – Mirrors

Mirror used to divine a future husband – “A girl who looks obliquely into a mirror when she first wakes up on May Day will see the reflection, or at least initials or letters forming the name, of the man who is to be her mate.” ~Randolph OMF 175-176

Mirror and well used to divine a future husband – “A maiden lady who wants to see her future husband goes to a well at noon on May 1 and holds a mirror so as to reflect the light down into the darkness. Some girls say that they have actually seen their mates-to-be in the water. Others are afraid to try this stunt, because sometimes a girl doesn’t see any man, but an image of herself in a coffin, which means that she’ll die before another May Day. If a girl sees nothing at all in the water, she is very likely to be an old maid.” ~Randolph OMF 176

Covered when someone dies – “If you see a corpse in a looking glass, there will be a death in the family.” ~Parler FBA VIII 8220

“Cover the mirrors in the house as soon as a life passes. Failure in doing this may cause the ghost of the deceased to haunt the house and be seen in the mirrors.” ~Parler FBA VIII 8221

“Back in Madison County it was the custom to turn all the mirrors toward the wall when a person died so the soul could cross the threshold unnoticed.” ~Parler FBA VIII 8226

Parler, Mary Celestia Folk Beliefs from Arkansas (FBA)

Randolph, Vance Ozark Magic and Folklore (OMF)

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