The Apparition of Mrs. Veal is a pamphlet published anonymously in 1706 and often considered as "the first modern ghost story". It is usually attributed to Daniel Defoe.
A Canterbury resident, Mrs. Bargrave, is visited by her old friend and former neighbor, Mrs. Veal, who says that she would like to catch up before departing on a journey. They discuss books on death and friendship before Mrs. Veal tells her friend that her locked cabinet contains a purse filled with gold, and asks her to write a letter to her brother.
Mrs. Bargrave steps out to call her daughter, and when she returns she finds Mrs. Veal standing in the street about to leave. Mrs. Bargrave subsequently looks for Mrs. Veal, but finds out that she had died the day before the visit.