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The Cold Heart
by [?]

Those who travel through Swabia should always remember to cast a passing glance into the Schwarzwald,[1] not so much for the sake of the trees (though pines are not found everywhere in such prodigious numbers, nor of such a surpassing height), as for the sake of the people, who show a marked difference from all others in the neighbourhood around. They are taller than ordinary men, broad-shouldered, have strong limbs, and it seems as if the bracing air which blows through the pines in the morning, has allowed them, from their youth upwards, to breathe more freely, and has given them a clearer eye and a firmer, though ruder, mind than the inhabitants of the valleys and plains. The strong contrast they form to the people living without the limits of the “Wald,” consists, not merely in their bearing and stature, but also in their manners and costume. Those of the Schwarzwald of the Baden territory dress most handsomely; the men allow their beards to grow about the chin just as nature gives it; and their black jackets, wide trousers, which are plaited in small folds, red stockings, and painted hats surrounded by a broad brim, give them a strange, but somewhat grave and noble appearance. Their usual occupations are the manufacturing of glass, and the so-called Dutch clocks, which they carry about for sale over half the globe.

Another part of the same race lives on the other side of the Schwarzwald; but their occupations have made them contract manners and customs quite different from those of the glass manufacturers. Their Wald supplies their trade; felling and fashioning their pines, they float them through the Nagold into the Neckar, from thence down the Rhine as far as Holland; and near the sea the Schwarzwaelder and their long rafts are well known. Stopping at every town which is situated along the river, they wait proudly for purchasers of their beams and planks; but the strongest and longest beams they sell at a high price to Mynheers, who build ships of them. Their trade has accustomed them to a rude and roving life, their pleasure consisting in drifting down the stream on their timber, their sorrow in wandering back again along the shore. Hence the difference in their costume from that of the glass manufacturers. They wear jackets of a dark linen cloth, braces a hand’s breadth wide, displayed over the chest, and trousers of black leather, from the pocket of which a brass rule sticks out as a badge of honour; but their pride and joy are their boots, which are probably the largest that are worn in any part of the world, for they may be drawn two spans above the knee, and the raftsmen may walk about in water at three feet depth without getting their feet wet.

It is but a short time ago that the belief in hobgoblins of the wood prevailed among the inhabitants, this foolish superstition having been eradicated only in modern times. But the singularity about these hobgoblins who are said to haunt the Schwarzwald, is, that they also wear the different costumes of the people. Thus it is affirmed of the Glass-mannikin, a kind little sprite three feet and a half high, that he never shows himself except in a painted little hat with a broad brim, a doublet, white trousers, and red stockings; while Dutch Michel, who haunts the other side of the forest, is said to be a gigantic, broad-shouldered fellow wearing the dress of a raftsman; and many who have seen him say they would not like to pay for the calves whose hides it would require to make one pair of his boots, affirming that, without exaggeration, a man of the middle height may stand in one of them with his head only just peeping out.