The Schoolmarm Double

People have pondered over the strange case of Madame Sage. A schoolteacher, she had an absurd way of overcoming the difficulties that the job presented. And that was to have a double-or so it was said by those who witnessed it.

When she was teaching in a girl’s school in Livonia, Russia, in 1845, it was noted that there were actually two Madame Sages. One, for instance, would be sitting facing her class, while the other was writing on the blackboard. Two pupils once reported that while they had seen her sitting indoors, she was also seen picking flowers outside at the exact same time.

The mysterious double was not just recognized by her over-imaginative students. A friend was tending to her one day, as she was in bed with cold, while a facsimile apparently walked round the room.

After 18 months or so, the rumors eventually became too much thereby prompting the school governors to take action. Upon questioning, she confirmed their suspicions. Yes, she told them, it was quite true. She claimed that she could project an image of herself by will-power! The trick, she had discovered, was a great aid in maintaining discipline: she could keep an eye on the class when her back was turned.

The governors must’ve been quite impressed, right? She was sacked.

She later confessed the whole truth.

There is no record of the teacher-in-duplicate’s first name. She was always referred to just as Madame Sage-whether because she was a married woman or simply because she was a ‘school-marm’ is not recorded.

You can just imagine what must’ve been her husband’s plight, assuming that she had one, once he would come to know that there were two Madame Sages.

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