The Fairy Password
a farm servant was once lying in hiding near the Ynys Geinon Rock,
waiting for some perverse rabbits to enter his net, he saw a little man
going up to that great mass of stone. On his uttering a curious little
word, a door opened in the face of the rock: he went in, and the door
closed behind him.
Dai (every other man in South
Wales has this pretty name) thought he would see what would happen if
he uttered the same little word as the little man had used. He tried
the experiment: the door opened for him also, and he went into the
rock. But he could not shut the stone door behind him, and when he saw
that it weighed at least three or four tons, he did not want to do so.
At this juncture a little man came running towards Dai shouting, "Shut
the door, shut the door, the candles are guttering with the draught."
With that he uttered another curious little word, and the door shut of
its own accord. Then he noticed the intruder and called his companions.
They made great sport of Dai, but as he was ruddy and of a fair
complexion they treated him kindly.
He found that
there were underground passages running in all directions: they could
get to the Cave of Tan yr Ogof, near Craig y Nos Castle, the Caves of
Ystrad Fellte, the Garn Goch, and other places by them. He learned,
too, much about their habits: these fairies were dreadful thieves,
always stealing milk and butter and cheese from farm-dairies.
he had been, with them for about two years they let him go, and gave
him a hatful of guineas to take with him, for they had great stores of
gold. He told his master all about his experiences when he returned,
but it would have been better if he had kept his knowledge to himself.
His master thought it was a great pity that so much gold should lie
idle, and opening the stone door by means of the password which Dai had
learned, he brought from the cave enough guineas, half-guineas and
seven--and--sixpenny pieces to fill his salt chest. But he became too
greedy; and when he went, to the cave to fetch still more money, the
fairies caught him, and he never returned. When Dai went to look for
him, he found his four quarters hanging behind the stone door: he was
so frightened that he never again ventured to use the password, nor
would he reveal it to anyone, so that this very useful bit of
information has perished, which is a very great pity.