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The Haunters and the Haunted edited by Ernest Rhys online
KOTTER'S RED CIRCLE
From FERRIER'S "Apparitions"
Kotter's first vision was detailed by him, on oath, before the magistrates of Sprottaw, in 1619. While he was travelling on foot, in open daylight, in June 1616, a man appeared to him, who ordered him to inform the civil and ecclesiastical authorities, that great evils were impending over Germany, for the punishment of the sins of the people; after which he vanished. The same apparition met him at different times, and compelled him at length, by threats, to make this public declaration.
After this, his visions assumed a more imposing appearance: on one occasion the angel (for such he was now confessed to be) showed him three suns, filling one half of the heavens; and nine moons, with their horns turned towards the east, filling the other half. At the same time, a superb fountain of pure water spouted from the arid soil, under his feet.
At another time, he beheld a mighty lion, treading on the moon, and seven other lions around him, in the clouds.
Sometimes he beheld the encounter of hostile armies, splendidly accoutred; sometimes he wandered through palaces, whose only inhabitants were devouring monsters; or beheld dragons of enormous size, in various scenes of action.
He was at length attended by two angels, in his ecstasy; one of his visions at this time was of the most formidable and impressive kind. "On the 13th day of September, says he, both the youths returned to me, saying, be not afraid, but observe the thing which will be shewn to thee. And I suddenly beheld a circle, like the sun, red, and as it were, bloody: in which were black and white lines, or spots, so intermingled, that sometimes there appeared a greater number of blacks, sometimes of white; and this sight continued for some space of time. And when they had said to me, Behold! Attend! Fear not! No evil will befal thee! Lo, there were three successive peals of thunder, at short intervals, so loud and dreadful, that I shuddered all over. But the circle stood before me, and the black and white spots were disunited, and the circle approached so near that I could have touched it with my hand. And it was so beautiful, that I had never in my life seen any thing more agreeable: and the white spots were so bright and pleasant, that I could not contain my admiration. But the black spots were carried away in cloud of horrible darkness, in which I heard a dismal outcry, though I could see no one. Yet these words of lamentation were audible: Woe unto us, who have committed ourselves unto the black cloud, to be withdrawn from the circle coloured with the blood of divine grace, in which the grace of God, in his well-beloved Son, had inclosed us."
After several other piteous exclamations, he saw a procession of many thousand persons, bearing palms, and singing hymns, but of very small stature, enter the red circle, from the black cloud, chanting halleluiah.