Flemish Legend The Brotherhood of the Cheerful Countenance by Charles de Coster Chapter 10

Of the brigand called Irontooth.

But this thing never happened but once; for on the morrow when the drinkers were carousing at The Horn the good women who came thither to entice them away a second time were driven off in a shameful manner.

And as for the men, they continued to drink and to shout hilarious carols.

Several times the night-watchman of the town came in to warn them against making so much noise after the sun was set. Ha, they listened to him with all respect, and seemed quite abashed and repentant at their fault; each one said his mea culpa; and in the meantime they gave the poor watchman so abundantly to drink that when he got outside he went off straight away to do his round leaning against some wall, and there snoring like a bass-viol. The others continued their drinking bouts and heavy slumbering, whereof the unhappy wives never ceased to complain. And so on, in this fashion, for a month and four days.

Now by great misfortune the good Duke had lately been at war with my Lord of Flanders, and although peace had been made between them there remained afoot a band of lewd and ribald scoundrels, who went about ravishing all the countryside and robbing the townsfolk.

This same band was commanded by a savage captain, to whom was given the name of Irontooth, because on the top of his casque he wore a single spike, sharp and cruel, like the tooth of some devil or of one of the unicorns of hell, cut out into fantastic shape. In battle he would sometimes put down his head and use this tooth as a wild boar uses his tusks. In this manner were slain many brave soldiers of the duchy of Brabant. On this same casque he carried also an evil bird whose wings beat against the steel, whereof it was said that it screeched in battle in a terrible fashion. 

It was Irontooth’s custom to come at night to the villages on which he was minded to carry out his forays, butchering without mercy the poor townsfolk in their sleep, and carrying off jewels, plate, women, and maids, but of these last only the young ones. As for the old women, he left them their lives, saying that it was not worth the while of killing them, for they would certainly die of fright by themselves.