She had sat on the knees of somnambulists, and had been passed from hand to hand by trance-speakers; she was familiar with every kind of "cure," and had grown up among lady-editors of newspapers advocating new religions, and people who disapproved of the marriage-tie.
It requires no great stretch of the imagination to form a correct idea of the mystic eccentricities to which this awful practice must have led those who frequently indulged in it. Rabbinical mystics, like modern trance-speakers, gave vivid descriptions of the interior splendor and grand sceneries of heaven and of the conversations of angels.
The Fox girls started modern spiritualism on its wild and mischievous career, as Elizabeth Parsons might have done, in a more favourable environment. There was never anything new in all these cases. The lowest savages have their seances, levitations, bindings of the medium, trance-speakers; Peruvians, Indians, have their objects moved without contact. Simon Magus, or St.