To anyone unfamiliar with Manx folklore, of which I am sure there is a fair few, there is an old tale that depicts the presence of a ghostly black dog that is said to roam Peel Castle upon night fall. So the story goes that it is a mad beast with devil red eyes and any unfortunate soul who should set sight upon the demon hound will inevitably meet their impending doom soon after. The name of this phantom creature is the Moddey Dhoo which translates to ‘Black Dog’ in Manx.
There was once a passageway in the Castle that intersected the Church grounds and eventually led to the dwellings of the Captain of the Guard, it was here that the old dog would be seen at dusk, only to exit the very same way upon mornings break. According to legend, in an act of brazen contempt against the monstrous canine, a drunken castle guard decided to breach protocol one night and lock up the castle gate alone. Full of Dutch courage, the bolshy watchmen grabbed the keys and proceeded to carry out the duty alone, despite it not even being his round to do so. After securing the castle he was to continue along the haunted corridor to return the keys to the captain. This however, was not to be the case.
The guard continued fearlessly along the entryway and towards the Captains quarters in spite of the protests from his colleagues. It was then that a deathly howl proceeded to resonate the castle walls as that of a man who had bore witness to some horrifying site. Silence fell upon the old Viking fort, the other guards did not respond to the cries and would only lay frozen in terror to the unwelcome sound befallen upon them. Moments later, wayward footsteps were heard coming from the passageway, the wretched guard fell through the door trembling, his face etched with fright, his mind altered. He had surely encountered the beast.
The other guards were desperate to know what had happened, they enticed their fellow gatekeeper to confess to what horror he had sustained, it must have been the moddey Dhoo they thought. The accursed remained silent, too beholden in shock to utter a sound. It was in this state he would remain, paralysed in fear, unable to speak, unable to move until exactly 3 days later the condemned man was dead.