Prelude to ‘The Sandman’ by E.T.A. Hoffmann by Leon Nack
“Full of curiosity to learn something more about this Sand-man and what he had to do with us children, I at length asked the old woman who acted as my youngest sister’s attendant, what sort of a man he was — the Sand-man? "Why, ‘thanael, darling, don’t you know?” she replied. “Oh! he’s a wicked man, who comes to little children when they won’t go to bed and throws handfuls of sand in their eyes, so that they jump out of their heads all bloody; and he puts them into a bag and takes them to the half-moon as food for his little ones; and they sit there in the nest and have hooked beaks like owls, and they pick naughty little boys’ and girls’ eyes out with them.” […] I was quite old enough to perceive that the old woman’s tale about the Sand-man and his little ones’ nest in the half-moon couldn’t be altogether true; nevertheless the Sand-man continued to be for me a fearful incubus…” from The Sandman by E. T. A. Hoffmann (1817)
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