Dictionary of Phrase and Fable
E. Cobham Brewer From The Edition Of 1894
This letter represents a style or hedge. It is called in Hebrew heth or cheth (a hedge).
(Mr. Doyle, father of Mr. Richard Doyle, connected with Punch). This political caricaturist died 1868.
His or Her Majesty's service or ship, as H.M.S. Wellington.
The “Habeas Corpus Act” was passed in the reign of Charles II., and defined a provision of similar character in Magna Charta, to which also it added certain details. The Act provides (1) That any man taken to prison can insist that the person who charges him with crime shall bring him bodily before a judge, and state the why and wherefore of his detention. As soon as this is done, the judge is to decide whether or not the accused is to be admitted to bail. [No one, therefore, can be imprisoned on mere suspicion, and no one can be left in prison any indefinite time at the caprice of the powers that be. Imprisonment, in fact, must be either for punishment after conviction, or for safe custody till the time of trial.]
(2) It provides that every person accused of crime shall have the question of his guilt decided by a jury of twelve men, and not by a Government agent or nominee.
(3) No prisoner can be tried a second time on the same charge.
(4) Every prisoner may insist on being examined within twenty days of his arrest, and tried by jury the next session.
(5) No defendant is to be sent to prison beyond the seas, either within or without the British dominions.
The exact meaning of the words Habeas Corpus is this: “You are to produce the body.” That is, You, the accuser, are to bring before the judge the body of the accused, that he may be tried and receive the award of the court, and you (the accused) are to abide by the award of the judge.
Suspension of Habeas Corpus. When the Habeas Corpus Act is suspended, the Crown can imprison persons on suspicion, without giving any reason for so doing; the person so arrested cannot insist on being brought before a judge to decide whether or not he can be admitted to bail; it is not needful to try the prisoner at the following assize; and the prisoner may be confined in any prison the Crown chooses to select for the purpose.
from hapertas, a cloth the width of which was settled by Magna Charta. A “hapertas—er” is the seller of hapertas—erie.
“To match this saint there was another,
As busy and perverse a brother,
An haberdasher of small wares
In politics and state affairs.”
Butler: Hudibras, iii. 2.
Habit is Second Nature
The wise saw of Diogenes, the cynic. (B.C. 412—323.) Shakespeare: “Use almost can change the stamp of nature” (Hamlet, iii. 4). French: “L'habitude est une seconde nature.”
Latin: “Usus est optimus magister” (Columella). Italian: “L'abito è una seconda natura.”
is a contraction of Habichts — burg (Hawk's Tower); so called from the castle on the right bank of the Aar, built in the eleventh century by Werner, Bishop of Strasburg, whose nephew (Werner II.) was the first to assume the title of “Count of Habsburg.” His great—grandson, Albrecht II., assumed the title of
“Landgraf of Sundgau.” His grandson, Albrecht IV., in the thirteenth century, laid the foundation of the greatness of the House of Habsburg, of which the imperial family of Austria are the representatives.
A vast stone near Stantin Drew, in Somersetshire; so called from a tradition that it was a coit thrown by Sir John Hautville. In Wiltshire three huge stones near Kennet are called the Devil's coits.
Not thoroughbred, but nearly so. They make the best roadsters, hunters and carriage horses; their action is showy, and their pace good. A first—class roadster will trot a mile in 2 minutes. Some American trotters will even exceed this record. The best hackneys are produced from thoroughbred sires mated with halfbred mares. (French, haguenée; the Romance word haque =the Latin equus; Spanish, hacanéa.)
In ordinary parlance, a hackney, hackney—horse, or hack, means a horse “hacked out” for hire. These horses are sometimes vicious private horses sold for “hacks” or worn—out coach—horses, and cheap animals with broken wind, broken knees, or some other defect.
“The knights are well horsed and the common people and others on litell hukeneys hackneys and geldynges.” — Froissart.
(Captain). A thick—headed bully of Alsatia, impudent but cowardly. He was once a sergeant in Flanders, but ran from his colours, and took refuge in Alsatia, where he was dubbed captain. (Shadwell: Squire of Alsatia.)
Haco I His sword was called Quern—Biter [foot—breadth ]. (See Sword.)
According to tradition, it was a haddock in whose mouth St. Peter found the stater (or piece of money), and the two marks on the fish's neck are said to be the impressions of the apostle's finger and thumb. It is a pity that the person who invented this pretty story forgot that salt—water haddocks cannot live in the fresh water of the Lake Gennesaret. (See John Dory and Christian Traditions.)
“O superstitious dainty, Peter's fish,
How comst thou here to make so goodly dish?” Metellus: Dialogues (1603).
(2 syl.). The places of the departed spirit till the resurrection. It may be either Paradise or “Tartarus.” It is a great pity that it has been translated “hell” nine or ten times in the common version of the New Testament, as “hell” in theology means the inferno. The Hebrew sheol is about equal to the Greek haides, that is, a, privative, and idein, to see.
[a legend ]. The traditions about the prophet Mahomet's sayings and doings. This compilation forms a supplement to the Koran, as the Talmud to the Jewish Scriptures. Like the Jewish Gemara, the Hadith was not allowed originally to be committed to writing, but the danger of the traditions being perverted or forgotten led to their being placed on record.
The pilgrimage to Kaaba (temple of Mecca), which every Mahometan feels bound to make once at least before death. Those who neglect to do so “might as well die Jews or Christians.” These pilgrimages are made by caravans well supplied with water, and escorted by 1,400 armed men for defence against brigands.
(Hebrew, hag, the festival of Jewish pilgrimages to Jerusalem.)
“The green turban of the Mussulman distinguishes the devout hadji who has been to Mecca.” — Stephens: Egypt, vol. i. chap. xvii. p. 240.
A pilgrim, a Mahometan who has made the Hadj or pilgrimage to the Prophet's tomb at Mecca. Every Hadji is entitled to wear a green turban.
Milton, in his Comus, says hæmony is of “sovereign use 'gainst all enchantments, mildew, blast, or damp.” Coleridge says the word is hæma—oinos (blood—wine), and refers to the blood of Jesus Christ, which destroys all evil. The leaf, says Milton, “had prickles on it,” but “it bore a bright golden flower.” The prickles are the crown of thorns, the flower the fruits of salvation.
This interpretation is so in accordance with the spirit of Milton, that it is far preferable to the suggestions that the plant agrimony or alyssum was intended, for why should Milton have changed the name? (Greek, haima, blood.) (See Comus, 648—668.)
Dioscorides ascribes similar powers to the herb alyssum, which, as he says, “keepeth man and beast from enchantments and witching.”
A range of mountains separating Thrace and Mœsia, called by the classic writers Cold Hœmos. (Greek, cheimon, winter; Latin, hiems; Sanskrit, hima.)
“O'er high Pieria thence her course she bore,
O'er fair Emathia's ever—pleasing shore;
O'er Hæmus' hills with snows eternal crown'd,
Nor once her flying foot approached the ground.” Pope: Homer's Iliad, xiv.
Hafed A Gheber or Fire—worshipper, in love with Hinda, the Arabian emir's daughter, whom he first saw when he entered the palace under the hope of being able to slay her father, the tyrant usurper of Persia. He was the leader of a band sworn to free their country or die, and his name was a terror to the Arab, who looked upon him as superhuman. His rendezvous was betrayed by a traitor comrade, but when the Moslem army came to take him he threw himself into the sacred fire, and was burnt to death. (Thomas Moore.)
The great Persian lyrist, called the “Persian Anacreon" (fourteenth century). His odes are called ghazels, and are both sweet and graceful. The word hafiz (retainer) is a degree given to those who know by heart the Koran and Hadith (traditions).
A witch or sorceress. (Anglo—Saxon, hægtesse, a witch or hag.)
“How now you secret, black, and midnight hags?” Shakespeare: Macbeth, iv. I.
Hagan of Trony
or Haco of Norway, son of Aldrian, liegeman of Günther, King of Burgundy. Günther invited Siegfried to a hunt of wild beasts, but while the king of Netherland stooped to drink from a brook, Hagan stabbed him between the shoulders, the only vulnerable point in his whole body. He then deposited the dead body at the door of Kriemhild's chamber, that she might stumble on it when she went to matins, and suppose that he had been murdered by assassins. When Kriemhild sent to Worms for the “Nibelung Hoard,” Hagan seized it, and buried it secretly somewhere beneath the Rhine, intending himself to enjoy it. Kriemhild, with a view of vengeance, married Etzel, King of the Huns, and after the lapse of seven years, invited the king of Burgundy, with Hagan and many others, to the court of her husband, but the invitation was a mere snare. A terrible broil was stirred up in the banquet hall, which ended in the slaughter of all the Burgundians but two
(Günther and Hagan), who were taken prisoners and given to Kriemhild, who cut off both their heads. Hagan lost an eye when he fell upon Walter of Spain. He was dining on the chine of a wild boar when Walter pelted him with the bones, one of which struck him in the eye. Hagan's person is thus described in the great German epic: —
“Well—grown and well—compacted was that redoubted guest;
Long were his legs and sinewy, and deep and broad his chest; His hair, that once was sable, with grey was dashed of late; Most terrible his visage, and lordly was his gait.”
The Nibelungen—Lied, stanza 1780.
(3 syl.). The Moors are so called, being the supposed descendants of Hagar, Abraham's bondwoman.
“San Diego ... hath often been seen conquering ... the Hagarene squadrons.” — Cervantes: Don Quixote, part ii. book iv. 6.
(plur. haggadoth). The free rabbinical interpretation of Scripture. (Hebrew, hagged, to relate.) (See Farrar: Life of Christ, vol. ii. chap. lviii. p. 333.)
(See Hadj .)
Tangles in the manes of wild ponies, supposed to be used by witches for stirrups. The term is common in the New Forest. Seamen use the word hag's—teeth to express those parts of a matting, etc., which spoil its general uniformity.
The Fata Morgana. (Scandinavian.)
Ha—ha (A). A ditch serving the purpose of a hedge without breaking the prospect. (Anglo—Saxon, hœh, a hole.)
(Samuel). A German physician, who set forth in his Organon of Medicine the system which he called “homœopathy” the principles of which are these: (1) that diseases are cured by those medicines which would produce the disease in healthy bodies; (2) that medicines are to be simple and not compounded; (3) that doses are to be exceedingly minute. (1755—1843).
(2 syl.). A beautiful Greek girl, who found Don Juan when he was cast ashore, and restored him to animation. “Her hair was auburn, and her eyes were black as death.” Her mother, a Moorish woman from Fez, was dead, and her father, Lambro, a rich Greek pirate, was living on one of the Cyclades. She and Juan fell in love with each other during the absence of Lambro from the island. On his return Juan was arrested, placed in a galliot, and sent from the island. Haidee went mad and, after a lingering illness, died. (Byron: Don Juan, cantos ii. iii. iv.)
Health, an exclamation of welcome, like the Latin Salve (Anglo—Saxon, hél, health; but hail=frozen rain is the Anglo—Saxon hægl.)
“All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of
Glamis.” Shakespeare: Macbeth, i. 3.
To call to.
To hail a ship or an omnibus. To call to those on board.
(A). One on easy, familiar terms. (See Jockey .)
“Hail fellow well met, all dirty and wet;
Find out, if you can, who's master, who's man.” Swift: My Lady's Lamentation.
One single tuft is left on the shaven crown of a Mussulman, for Mahomet to grasp hold of when drawing the deceased to Paradise.
“And each scalp had a single long tuft of hair.”
Byron: Siege of Corinth.
The scalp—lock of the North American Indians, left on the otherwise bald head, is for a conquering enemy to seize when he tears off the scalp.
Hair (Absalom's) (2 Sam. xiv. 25). Absalom used to cut his hair once a year, and the clippings “weighed 200 shekels after the king's weight,” i.e. 100 oz. avoirdupois. It would be a fine head of hair which weighed five ounces, but the mere clippings of Absalom's hair weighed 43,800 grains (more than 100 oz.). Paul says (1 Cor. xi. 14), “Doth not even nature itself teach you, that if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?”
Mrs. Astley, the actress, could stand upright and cover her feet with her flaxen hair.
The greatest events are often drawn by hairs . Events of great pith and moment are often brought about by causes of apparently no importance.
— Sir John Hawkins's History of Music, a work of sixteen years labour, was plunged into long oblivion by a pun.
The magnificent discovery of gravitation by Newton is ascribed to the fall of an apple from a tree under which he was musing.
The dog Diamond, upsetting a lamp, destroyed the papers of Sir Isaac Newton, which had been the toil of his life. (See page 350).
A spark from a candle falling on a cottage floor was the cause of the Great Fire of London. A ballad chanted by a fille—de—chambre undermined the colossal power of Albereni.
A jest of the French king was the death of William the Conqueror. The destruction of Athens was brought about by a jest on Sulla. Some witty Athenian, struck with his pimply face, called him a “mulberry pudding.”
Rome was saved from capture by the Gauls by the cackling of some sacred geese. Benson in his Sketches of Corsica, says that Napoleon's love for war was planted in his boyhood by the present of a small brass cannon.
The life of Napoleon was saved from the “Infernal Machine” because General Rapp detained Josephine a minute or two to arrange her shawl after the manner of Egyptian women.
The famous “Rye—house Plot” miscarried from the merest accident. The house in which Charles II. was staying happened to catch fire, and the king was obliged to leave for Newmarket a little sooner than he had intended.
Lafitte, the great banker, was a pauper, and he always ascribed his rise in life to his picking up a pin in the streets of Paris.
A single line of Frederick II., reflecting not on politics but on the poetry of a French minister, plunged France into the Seven Years' War.
The invention of glass is ascribed to some Phœnician merchants lighting a fire on the sands of the seashore.
The three hairs. When Reynard wanted to get talked about, he told Miss Magpie, under the promise of secrecy, that “the lion king had given him three hairs from the fifth leg of the amoronthologosphorus, ... a beast that lives on the other side of the river Cylinx; it has five legs, and on the fifth leg there are three hairs, and whoever has these three hairs will be young and beautiful for ever.” They had effect only on the fair sex, and could be given only to the lady whom the donor married. (Sir E. B. Lytton: Pilgrims of the Rhine, xii.)
To a hair or To the turn of a hair. To a nicety. A hairbreadth is the forty—eight part of an inch. To comb one's hair the wrong way. To cross or vex one by running counter to one's prejudices, opinions, or habits.
Without turning a hair. Without indicating any sign of fatigue or distress. A horse will run a certain distance at a given rate without turning a hair.
Against the hair. Against the grain, contrary to its nature.
“If you should fight, you go against the hair of your professions.” — Shakespeare: Merry Wives of Windsor, ii. 3.
(See Air—Brained .)
Hair—breadth 'Scape A very narrow escape from some evil. In measurement the forty—eighth part of an inch is called a “hair—breadth.”
“Wherein I spake of most disastrous chances,
Of moving accidents by flood and field,
Of hair—breadth 'scapes i' th' imminent deadly reach.' Shakespeare: Othello, i. 3.
These filiform worms belong to the species Gordius aquaticus, found in stagnant pools. Their resemblance to wriggling hairs has given rise to the not uncommon belief that a hair, if left in water for nine days, will turn into an cel.
Cavilling about very minute differences. (See Hair—Breadth .)
“Nothing is more fatal to eloquence than attention to fine hair—splitting distinctions.” — Mathews: Oratory and Orators, chap. ii. p. 36.
(Celtic) means boundary stone; a monolith sometimes, but erroneously, termed a Druidical stone. (Scotland.)
Hair by Hair
Hair by hair you will pull out the horse's tail. Plutarch says that Sertorius, in order to teach his soldiers that perseverance and wit are better than brute force, had two horses brought before them, and set two men to pull out their tails. One of the men was a burly Hercules, who tugged and tugged, but all to no purpose; the other was a sharp, weasen—faced tailor, who plucked one hair at a time, amidst roars of laughter, and soon left the tail quite bare.
Hair devoted to Proserpine
Till a lock of hair is devoted to Proserpine, she refuses to release the soul from the dying body. When Dido mounted the funeral pile, she lingered in suffering till Juno sent Iris to cut off a lock of her hair. Thanatos did the same for Alcestis, when she gave her life for her husband. And in all sacrifices a forelock was first cut off from the head of the victim as an offering to the black queen.
“Hunc ego Diti
Sacrum jussa fero, teque isto corpore solvo.' Sic ait, et dextra crinem secat ...
... atque in ventos vita recessit.
Virgil: Æneid, iv. 702—5.
Hair of a Dissembling Colour
Red hair is so—called, from the notion that Judas had red hair.
“Rosalind. His very hair is of the dissembling colour [red ].
Celia. Somewhat browner than Judas's.” —
Shakespeare: As You Like It, iii. 4.
Hair of the Dog that Bit You
(A). Similia similibus curantur. In Scotland it is a popular belief that a few hairs of the dog that bit you applied to the wound will prevent evil consequences. Applied to drinks, it means, if overnight you have indulged too freely, take a glass of the same wine next morning to soothe the nerves. “If this dog do you bite, soon as out of your bed, take a hair of the tail in the morning.”
“Take the hair, it's well written,
Of the dog by which you're bitten;
Work off one wine by his brother,
And one labour with another ...
Cook with cook, and strife with strife:
Business with business, wife with wife.”
Athenæus (ascribed to Aristophanes).
“There was a man, and he was wise,
Who fell into a bramble—bush
And scratched out both his eyes;
And when his eyes were out, he then
Jumped into the bramble—bush
And scratched them in again.”
Hair stand on End
Indicative of intense mental distress and astonishment. Dr. Andrews, of Beresford chapel, Walworth, who attended Probert under sentence of death, says: “When the executioner put the cords on his wrists, his hair, though long and lanky, of a weak iron—grey, rose gradually and stood perfectly upright, and so remained for some time, and then fell gradually down again.”
“Fear came upon me and trembling, ... [and] the hair of my flesh stood up.” — Job iv. 14, 15.
We lose in hake, but gain in herring. Lose one way, but gain in another. Herrings are persecuted by the hakes, which are therefore driven away from a herring fishery.
A familiar contraction of Harry (for Henry). Similarly, Dol is a contraction of Dorothy; Mol, of Mary, etc.
The substitution of P for M as the initial letter of proper names is seen in such examples as Polly for Molly, Patty for Martha, Peggy for Margy (i.e. Margaret), etc. (See Elizabeth.)
[rule ]. The Jewish oral law. (See Gemara, Mishna .)
“The halachah ... had even greater authority than the Scriptures of the Old Testament, since it explained and applied them.”— Edersheim Life of Jesus the Messiah, vol. i. book i. chap.i.
Halberjects or Haubergets
A coarse thick cloth used for the habits of monks. Thomson says it is the German al—bergen (cover—all) or Hals—bergen (neck—cover). (Essay on Magna Charta.)
A time of happiness and prosperity. Halcyon is the Greek for a kingfisher, compounded of hals (the sea) and kuo (to brood on). The ancient Sicilians believed that the kingfisher laid its eggs and incubated for fourteen days, before the winter solstice, on the surface of the sea, during which time the waves of the sea were always unruffled.
“Amidst our arms as quiet you shall be
As halcyon brooding on a winter's sea.”
“The peaceful kingfishers are met together
About the deck, and prophesie calm weather.” Wild: Iter Borealë
Half is more than the whole.. (Pleou hmiou pantoz)This is what Hesiod said to his brother Perseus, when he wished him to settle a dispute without going to law. He meant “half of the estate without the expense of law will be better than the whole after the lawyers have had their pickings.” The remark, however, has a very wide signification. Thus an embarras de richesse is far less profitable than a sufficiency. A large estate to one who cannot manage it is impoverishing. A man of small income will be poorer with a large house and garden to keep up than if he lived in a smaller tenement. Increase of wealth, if expenditure is more in proportion, tendeth to poverty.
“Unhappy they to whom God has not revealed,
By a strong light which must their sense control, That half a great estate's more than the whole.” Cowley: Essays in Verse and Prose, No. iv.
My better half. (See Better .)
He is only half—baked. He is a soft, a noodle. The allusion is to bread, piecrust, etc., only half—cooked.
The sanctum of the second mate, carpenters, coopers, boatswain, and all secondary officers.
Quarter—deck, the sanctum of the captain and superior officers. In a gun—decked ship, it is the deck below the spar—deck, extending from the mainmast to the cabin bulk—heads.
Half—done, as Elgin was burnt. In the wars between James II. of Scotland and the Douglases in 1452, the Earl of Huntly burnt one—half of the town of Elgin, being the side which belonged to the Douglases, but left the other side standing because it belonged to his own family. (Sir Walter Scott: Tales of a Grandfather, xxi.)
Half—faced Groat (You). You worthless fellow. The debased groats issued in the reign of Henry VIII. had the king's head in profile, but those in the reign of Henry VII. had the king's head with the full face. (See King John, i. 1; and 2 Henry IV., iii. 1.)
“Thou half—faced groat! You thick—cheeked chitty—face!”
Munday: The Downfal of Robert, Earle of Huntingdon (1601).
Almost up with one. Now applied to a person almost dead drunk. The phrase seems to be a corruption of the Dutch op—zee zober, “over—sea beer,” a strong, heady beverage introduced into Holland from England (Gifford). “Up—zee Freese” is Friezeland beer. The Dutch, half seeunst's over, more than half—sick. (C. K. Steerman.)
“I am half—seas o'er to death.”
“I do not like the dulness of your eye,
It hath a heavy cast, `tis upsee Dutch.”
Ben Jonson: Alchemist, iv. 2.
I am come back again, like a bad ha'penny. A facetious way of saying “More free than welcome.” As a bad hapenny is returned to its owner, so have I returned to you, and you cannot get rid of me.
Summoned before the mayor of Halgaver. The mayor of Halgaver is an imaginary person, and the threat is given to those who have committed no offence against the laws, but are simply untidy and slovenly. Halgaver is a moor in Cornwall, near Bodmin, famous for an annual carnival held there in the middle of July. Charles II. was so pleased with the diversions when he passed through the place on his way to Scilly that he became a member of the “self—constituted" corporation. The mayor of Garratt. (q.v.) is a similar “magnate.”
That is, halig fax or holy hair. Its previous name was Horton. The story is that a certain clerk of Horton, being jilted, murdered his quondam sweetheart by cutting off her head, which he hung in a yew—tree. The head was looked on with reverence, and came to be regarded as a holy relic. In time it rotted away, leaving little filaments or veins spreading out between the bark and body of the tree like fine threads. These filaments were regarded as the fax or hair of the murdered maiden. (See Hull.
(in Nova Scotia). So called by the Hon. Edward Cornwallis, the governor, in compliment to his patron, the Earl of Halifax (1749).
By this law, whoever commits theft in the liberty of Halifax is to be executed on the Halifax gibbet, a kind of guillotine.
“At Hallifax the law so sharpe doth deale,
That whoso more than thirteen pence doth steale, They have a jyn that wondrous quick and well Sends thieves all headless into heaven or hell.” Taylor (the Water Poet): Works, ii. (1630).
The mark on gold or silver articles after they have been assayed. Every article in gold is compared with a given standard of pure gold. This standard is supposed to be divided into twenty—four parts called carats; gold equal to the standard is said to be twenty—four carats fine. Manufactured articles are never made of pure gold, but the quantity of alloy used is restricted. Thus sovereigns and wedding—rings contain two parts of alloy to every twenty—two of gold, and are said to be twenty—two carats fine. The best gold watch—cases
contain six parts of silver or copper to eighteen of gold, and are therefore eighteen carats fine. Other gold watch cases and gold articles may contain nine, twelve, or fifteen parts of alloy, and only fifteen, twelve, or nine of gold. The Mint price of standard gold is £3 17s. 10½d. per ounce, or £46 14s. 6d. per pound.
Standard silver consists of thirty—seven parts of pure silver and three of copper. The Mint price is 5s. 6d. an ounce, but silver to be melted or manufactured into “plate” varies in value according to the silver market. To—day (Oct. 20th, 1894) it is 291/2d. per ounce.
Suppose the article to be marked is taken to the assay office for the hall mark. It will receive a leopard's head for London; an anchor for Birmingham; three wheat sheaves or a dagger for Chester; a castle with two wings for Exeter; five lions and a cross for York; a crown for Sheffield; three castles for Newcastle—on—Tyne; a thistle or castle and lion for Edinburgh; a tree and a salmon with a ring in its mouth for Glasgow; a harp or Hibernia for Dublin, etc. The specific mark shows at once where the article was assayed.
Besides the hall mark, there is also the standard mark, which for England is a lion passant; for Edinburgh a thistle; for Glasgow a lion rampant; and for Ireland a crowned harp. If the article stamped contains less pure metal than the standard coin of the realm, the number of carats is marked on it, as eighteen, fifteen, twelve, or nine carats fine.
Besides the hall mark, the standard mark, and the figure, there is a letter called the date mark. Only twenty letters are used, beginning with A, omitting J, and ending with V; one year they are in Roman characters, another year in Italian, another in Gothic, another in Old English; sometimes they are all capitals, sometimes all small letters; so, by seeing the letter and referring to a table, the exact year of the mark can be discovered. Lastly, the head of the reigning sovereign completes the marks.
The Sunday preceding Shrove Tuesday; the next day is called Hall' Monday, and Shrove Tuesday eve is called Hall' Night. The Tuesday is also called Pancake Day, and the day preceding Callop Monday, from the special foods popularly prepared for those days. All three were days of merrymaking. Hall' or Halle is a contraction of Hallow or Haloghe, meaning holy or festival.
Hall of Odin
The rocks, such as Halleberg and Hunneberg, from which the Hyperboreans, when tired of life, used to cast themselves into the sea; so called because they were the vestibule of the Scandinavian Elysium.
Byron, in his English Bards, etc., speaks of “classic Hallam, much renowned for Greek,” referring to “Hallam's severe critique on Payne Knight's Taste, in which were some Greek verses most mercilessly lashed. The verses, however, turned out to be a quotation from Pindar.”
It appears that Dr. Allen, not Hallam, was the luckless critic. (See Crabb Robinson: Diary, i. 277.)
There were two series of psalms so called. Jahn tells us in the Feast of Tabernacles the series consisted of Psalms cxiii. to cxviii. both included (Archæologica Biblica, p. 416). Psalm cxxxvi. was called the Great Hallel. And sometimes the songs of degrees sung standing on the fifteen steps of the inner court seem to be so called ( i.e. cxx. to cxxxvii. both included).
“Along this [path] Jesus advanced, preceded and followed by multitudes with loud cries of rejoicing, as at the Feast of Tabernacles, when the Great Hallel was daily sung in their processions.” — Geikie: Life of Christ, vol. ii. chap. 55, p. 397.
In the following quotation the Songs of Degrees are called the Great Hallel.
“Eldad would gladly have joined in praying the Great Hallel, as they call the series of Psams from the cxx. to the cxxxvi., after which it was customary to send round the [paschal] cup a fifth time, but midnight was already too near.” — Eldad the Pilgrim, chap. ix.
is the Hebrew halelu—Jah, “Praise ye Jehovah.”
(A). A young woman who wanders about with what is called “The Salvation Army.”
A victory gained by some newly—baptised Bretons, led by Germanus, Bishop of Auxerre (A.D. 429). The conquerors commenced the battle with loud shouts of “Hallelujah!”
Halloo when out of the Wood
or Never halloo till you are out of the wood. Never think you are safe from the attacks of robbers till you are out of the forest. “Call no man happy till he is dead.” “Many a slip 'twixt the cup and the lip.”
(October 31st), according to Scotch superstition, is the time when witches, devils, fairies, and other imps of earth and air hold annual holiday. (See Halloween, a poem by Robert Burns.)
A Bridport dagger (q.v.). St. Johnstone's tippet.
or rather Halster. A rope for the neck or halse, as a horse's halter. (Anglo—Saxon, hals, the neck; but there is also the word hælfter, a halter.)
“A thievisher knave is not on live, more filching, no more false;
Many a truer man than he has hanged up by the halse [neck].” Gammer Gurton.
In Laplandic mythology, the guardian spirits of Mount Niemi.
“From this height [Niemi, in Lapland] we had opportunity several times to see those vapours rise from the lake, which the people of the country call Haltios, and which they deem to be the guardian spirits of the mountain.” — M. de Maupertuis.
and Heyd. Storm demons or weather—sprites. (Scandinavian mythology.)
“Though valour never should be scorned.
Yet now the storm rules wide;
By now again to live returned
I'll wager Ham and Heyd.”
Frithiof Saga, lay xi.
Nymphs of trees supposed to live in forest—trees, and die when the tree dies. (Greek, hama, together with drus, a forest—tree.)
The nymphs of fruit—trees were called “Melides” or “Hamamelids.”
In Arabian mythology, a bird formed from the blood near the brains of a murdered man. This bird cries “Iskoonee!” (Give me drink!), meaning drink of the murderer's blood; and this it cries incessantly till the death is avenged, when it flies away.
The Cid Hamet Benengeli. The hypothetical Moorish chronicler from whom Cervantës professes to derive his adventures of Don Quixote.
“Of the two bad cassocks I am worth ... I would have given the latter of them as freely as even Cid Hamet offered his ... to have stood by.” — Sterne.
The reek of Mr. Patrick Hamilton has infected as many as it did blow upon, i.e. Patrick Hamilton was burnt to death by Cardinal Beaton, and the horror of the deed contributed not a little to the Reformation. As the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church, so the smoke or reek of Hamilton's fire diffused the principles for which he suffered (1504—1528).
Latimer, at the stake, said: “We shall this day light up such a candle in England as shall never be put out.”
A method of teaching foreign languages by inter—linear translations, suggested by James Hamilton, a merchant (1769—1831).
A daft person (Icelandic, amlod'), one who is irresolute, and can do nothing fully. Shakespeare's play is based on the Danish story of Amleth' recorded in Saxo—Grammaticus.
(Scotch). A cattle—shed, a hovel. (Hame = home, with a diminutive affix. Anglo—Saxon, ham, home. Compare hamlet. )
(Anglo—Saxon, hamer.) (1) Pierre d'Ailly, Le Marteau des Hérétiques, president of the council that condemned John Huss. (1350—1425.)
(2) Judas Asmonæus, surnamed Maccabæus, “the hammer.” (B.C. 166—136.)
(3) St. Augustine is called by Hakewell “That renowned pillar of truth and hammer of heresies.” (B.C. 395—430.)
(4) John Faber, surnamed Malleus Hereticorum, from the title of one of his works. (1470—1541.)
(5) St. Hilary, Bishop of Poitiers, Malleus Arianorum. (350—367.)
(6) Charles Martel. (689—741.)
“On prétend qu'on lui donna le surnom de Martel, parcequ'il avait écrasé comme avec un marteau les Sarrasins, qui, sous la conduite d'Abdérame, avaient envahi la France.” — Bouillet. Dictionnaire Universel, etc.
PHRASES AND PROVERBS.
Gone to the hammer. Applied to goods sent to a sale by auction; the auctioneer giving a rap with a small hammer when a lot is sold, to intimate that there is an end to the bidding.
They live hammer and tongs. Are always quarrelling. They beat each other like hammers, and are as “cross as the tongs.”
“Both parties went at it hammer and tongs; and hit one another anywhere and with anything.” — James Payn.
To sell under the hammer. To sell by auction. (See above.)
Hammer of the Scotch
Edward I. On his tomb in Westminster Abbey is the inscription “Edwardus longus Scotorum Malleus hic est ” (Here is long Edward, the hammer of the Scots).
The cloth that covers the coach—box, in which hammer, nails, bolts, etc., used to be carried in case of accident. Another etymology is from the Icelandic hamr (a skin), skin being used for the purpose. A third suggestion is that the word hammer is a corruption of “hammock,” the seat which the cloth covers being formed of straps or webbing stretched between two crutches like a sailor's hammock. Still another conjecture is that the word is a corruption of “hamper cloth,” the hamper being used for sundry articles required, and forming the coachman's box. The word box seems to favour this suggestion.
Hampton Court Conference
A conference held at Hampton Court in January, 1604, to settle the disputes between the Church party and the Puritans. It lasted three days, and its result was a few slight alterations in the Book of Common Prayer.
To hamshackle a horse is to tie his head to one of his fore—legs.
To disable by severing the tendons of the ham.
Sons of Hân. The Chinese are so called from Hân the founder of the twenty—sixth dynasty, with which modern history commences. (206—220.)
A costly goblet used at one time on state occasions. Sometimes the cup used by our Lord at the Last Supper is so called. (Old High German, hnapp, a cup.)
“He had, indeed, four silver hanaps of his own, which had been left him by his grandmother.” —“Sir W. Scott: Quentin Durward, chap. iv. p. 71.
Exchequer. “Hanaper office,” an office where all writs relating to the public were formerly kept in a hamper (in hanaperio). Hanaper is a cover for a hanap.
A measure of length = four inches. Horses are measured up the fore leg to the shoulder, and are called 14, 15, 16 (as it may be), hands high.
i. Hand (A). A symbol of fortitude in Egypt, of fidelity in Rome. Two hands symbolise concord; and a hand laid on the head of a person indicates the right of property. Thus if a person laid claim to a slave, he laid his hand upon him in the presence of the prætor. (Aulus Gellius, xx. 19.) By a closed hand Zeno represented dialectics, and by an open hand eloquence.
Previous to the twelfth century the Supreme Being was represented by a hand extended from the clouds; sometimes the hand is open, with rays issuing from the fingers, but generally it is in the act of benediction, i.e. with two fingers raised.
ii. Hand. (The final word.)
BEAR A HAND. Come and help. Bend to your work immediately. CAP IN HAND. Suppliantly, humbly; as, “To come cap in hand.”
DEAD MAN'S HAND. It is said that carrying a dead man's hand will produce a dead sleep. Another superstition is that a lighted candle placed in the hand of a dead man gives no light to anyone but him who carries the hand. Hence burglars, even to the present day in some parts of Ireland, employ this method of concealment.
EMPTY HAND. An empty hand is no lure for a hawk. You must not expect to receive anything without giving a return. The Germans say, Wer schmiert der fährt. The Latin proverb is Da, si vis accipere, or Pro nihilo, nihil fit.
HEAVY HAND, as “To rule with a heavy hand,” severely, with oppression. OLD HAND (An). One experienced.
POOR HAND (A). An unskilful one. “He is but a poor hand at it,” i.e. he is not skilful at the work. RED HAND, or bloody hand, in coat armour is generally connected with some traditional tale of blood, and the badge was never to be expunged till the bearer had passed, by way of penance, seven years in a cave, without companion, without shaving, and without uttering a single word.
In Aston church, near Birmingham, is a coat—armorial of the Holts. the “bloody hand” of which is thus accounted for: — It is said that Sir Thomas Holt, some two hundred years ago, murdered his cook in a cellar with a spit, and, when pardoned for the offence, the king enjoined him, by way of penalty, to wear ever after a “bloody hand” in his family coat.
In the church of Stoke d'Abernon, Surrey, there is a red hand upon a monument, the legend of which is, that a gentleman shooting with a friend was so mortified at meeting with no game that he swore he would shoot the first live thing he met. A miller was the victim of this rash vow, and the “bloody hand” was placed in his family coat to keep up a perpetual memorial of the crime.
Similar legends are told of the red hand in Wateringbury church, Kent; of the red hand on a table in the hall of Church—Gresly, in Derbyshire; and of many others.
The open red hand, forming part of the arms of the province of Ulster, commemorates the daring of O'Neile, a bold adventurer, who vowed to be first to touch the shore of Ireland. Finding the boat in which he was rowed outstripped by others, he cut off his hand and flung it to the shore, to touch it before those in advance could land.
The open red hand in the armorial coat of baronets arose thus: — James I. in 1611 created two hundred baronets on the payment of £1,000 each, ostensibly “for the amelioration of Ulster,” and from this connection with Ulster they were allowed to place on their coat armour the “open red hand,” up to that time borne by the O'Neiles. The O'Neile whose estates were made forfeit by King James was surnamed Lamb—derig Eirin (red—hand of Erin).
RIGHT HAND. He is my right hand. In France, C'est mon bras droit, my best man. SECOND—HAND. (See Second.)
UPPER HAND. To get the upper hand. To obtain the mastery.
YOUNG HAND (A). A young and inexperienced workman.
iii. Hand. (Phrases beginning with “To.”)
COME TO HAND. To arrive; to have been delivered.
To come to one's hand. It is easy to do.
GET ONE'S HAND IN. To become familiar with the work in hand. HAVE A HAND IN THE MATTER. To have a finger in the pie. In French, “Mettre la main á quelque chose. ' KISS THE HAND (Job xxxi. 27) To worship false gods. Cicero (In Yerrem, lib. iv. 43) speaks of a statue of Hercules, the chin and lips of which were considerably worn by the kisses of his worshippers. Hosea (xiii. 2) says, “Let the men that sacrifice kiss the calves.” (See Adore.)
“I have left me seven thousand in Israel ... which have not bowed unto Baal, and ... which [have] not kissed [their hand to] him.” — 1 Kings xix. 18.
LEND A HAND. To help. In French, “ Prêtez moi la main. '
LIVE FROM HAND TO MOUTH. To live without any provision for the morrow. TAKE IN HAND. To undertake to do something; to take the charge of.
iv. Hand (preceded by a preposition).
AT HAND. Conveniently near. “Near at hand,” quite close by. In French, “A la main. ' BEFOREHAND. Sooner, before it happened.
BEHINDHAND. Not in time, not up to date.
BY THE HAND OF GOD. “Accidit divinitus. ' FROM HAND TO HAND. From one person to another. IN HAND. Under control, in possession; under progress, as “Avoir la main á l'oeuvre. '
“Keep him well in hand.”
“I have some in hand, and more in expectation.” “I have a new book or picture in hand.”
A bird in the hand. (See BIRD.)
OFF HAND. At once; without stopping.
Off one's hands. No longer under one's responsibilities; able to maintain oneself. OUT OF HAND. At once, over.
“We will proclaim you out of hand.”
Shakespeare: 3 Henry VI., iv. 7.
“And, were these inward wars once out of hand,
We would, dear lords, unto the Holy Land.” Shakespeare: 2 Henry IV., iii. 1.
WITH A HIGH HAND. Imperiously, arrogantly. In French, “Faire quelque chose haut la main. ' v. Hand. (Miscellaneous articles.)
LAYING ON OF HANDS. The laying on of a bishop's hands in confirmation or ordination. PUTTING THE HAND UNDER THE THIGH. An ancient ceremony used in swearing.
“And A braham said unto his eldest servant ... Put, I pray thee, thy hand under my thigh: and I will make thee swear ... that thon shalt not take a wife unto my son of the daughters of the Canaauites.” — Genesis xxiv. 2, 3.
Persons employed in a factory. We say so many head of cattle: horse—dealers count noses. Races are won by the nose, and factory work by the hand, but cattle have the place of honour.
ALL. It is believed on all hands. It is generally (or universally) believed. CHANGE. To change hands. To pass from a possessor to someone else.
CLEAN. He has clean hands. In French, “It a les mains nettes. ' That is, he is incorruptible, or he has never taken a bribe.
FULL. My hands are full. I am fully occupied; I have as much work to do as I can manage. A “handful” has the plural “handfuls,” as “two handfuls,” same as “two barrow—loads,” “two cart—loads,” etc.
GOOD. I have it from very good hands. I have received my information on good authority. LAY. To lay hands on. To apprehend; to lay hold of. (See No. v.)
“Lay hands on the villain.”
Shakespeare: Taming of the Shrew, v. 1.
LONG. Kings have long hands. In French, “Les rois ont les mains longues. ' That is, it is hard to escape from the vengeance of a king, for his hands or agents extend over the whole of his kingdom.
SHAKE. To shake hands. To salute by giving a hand received into your own a shake.
To strike hands. (Prov. xvii. 18). To make a contract, to become surety for another. (See also Prov. vii. I and
xxii. 26.) The English custom of shaking hands in confirmation of a bargain has been common to all nations and all ages. In feudal times the vassal put his hands in the hands of his overlord on taking the oath of fidelity and homage.
SHOP “Hands, ' etc. Men and women employed in a shop.
TAKE OFF. To take off one's hands. To relieve one of something troublesome, as “Will no one take this [task] off my hands?”
WASH. To wash one's hands of a thing. In French, “Se lever les mains d'une chose ' or “Je m'en lave les mains. ' I will have nothing to do with it; I will abandon it entirely. The allusion is to Pilate's washing his hands at the trial of Jesus.
“When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying. I am innocent of the blood of this just person see ye to it.” — Matt. xxvii. 24.
Spelman says that King Alfred used to carry in his bosom memorandum leaves, in which he made observations, and took so much pleasure therein that he called it his hand—book, because it was always in his hand.
A slow and easy gallop, in which the horse is kept well in hand.
A particular sort of paper well known in the Record Office, and so called from its water—mark, which goes back to the fifteenth century.
Hand—post (A). A direction—post to direct travellers the way to different places.
(To). To pass from one person to another in a regular series.
Hand and Glove
(They are). Inseparable companions, of like tastes and like affections. They fit each other like hand and glove.
Hand and Seal
When writing was limited to a few clerks, documents were authenticated by the impression of the hand dipped in ink, and then the seal was duly appended. As dipping the hand in ink was dirty, the impression of the thumb was substituted. We are informed that “scores of old English and French deeds still exist in which such `signatures' appear.” Subsequently the name was written, and this writing was called “the hand.”
“Hubert: Here is your hand and seal for what I did.
King John: Oh, when the last account `twixt heaven and earth
Is to be made, then shall this hand and seal
Witness against us to damnation.”
Shakespeare: King John, vi. 2.
In a familiar or kindly manner, as when persons go hand—in—hand.
“Now we maun totter down, John,
But hand in hand we'll go.”
John Anderson, my Jo.
Hand of Cards
The whole deal of cards given to a single player. The cards which he holds in his hand.
“A saint in heaven would griere to see such `hand'
Cut up by one who will not understand.”
Hand of Justice
The allusion is to the sceptre or báton anciently used by kings, which had an ivory hand at the top of it.
Hand over Hand
To go or to come up hand over hand, is to travel with great rapidity, as climbing a rope or a ladder, or as one vessel overtakes another. Sailors in hauling a rope put one hand over the other alternately as fast as they can. In French, “Main sur main. '
“Commandment fait aux matelots qul halent sur une manoeuvre pour qu'ils passent alternativement une main sur l'autre sans interruption, et pour que le travil se fasse plus promptement.” — Royal Dictionnaire.
Hand the Sail
i.e. furl it.
Hand Down to Posterity
(To). To leave for future generations.
A sort of marriage. A fair was at one time held in Dumfriesshire, at which a young man was allowed to pick out a female companion to live with him. They lived, together for twelve months, and if they both liked the arrangement were man and wife. This was called hand—fasting or hand—fastening.
This sort of contract was common among the Romans and Jews, and is not unusual in the East even now.
“ `Knowest thou not that rite, holy man?' said A venel ...;`then I will tell thee. We bordermen
... take our wives for a year and a day; that space gone by, each may choose another mate, or, at their pleasure, [they] may call the priest to marry them for life, and this we call handfasting.' ” — Sir W. Scott: The Monastery, chap. xxv.
A game at cards not unlike loo, but with this difference — the winner of one trick has to put in a double stake, the winner of two tricks a triple stake, and so on. Thus: if six persons are playing, and the general stake is ls., and A gains three tricks, he gains 6s., and has to “hand i' the cap” or pool 3s. for the next deal. Suppose A gains two tricks and B one, then A gains 4s. and B 2s., and A has to stake 3s. and B 2s. for the next deal.
“To the `Mitre Tavern' in Wood Street, a house of the greatest note in London. Here some of us fell to handicap, a sport I never knew before, which was very good.” — Pepys: His Diary, Sept. 18th, 1680.
Handicap, in racing, is the adjudging of various weights to horses differing in age, power, or speed, in order to place them all, as far as possible, on an equality. If two unequal players challenge each other at chess, the superior gives up a piece, and this is his handicap. So called from the ancient game referred to by Pepys. (See Sweepstakes, Plate—Race, etc.)
The Winner's Handicap. The winning horses of previous races being pitted together in a race royal are first handicapped according to their respective merits: the horse that has won three races has to carry a greater weight than the horse that has won only two, and this latter more than its competitor who is winner of a single race only.
“The committee was at a loss to know whom next to throw the handkerchief to ” (The Times). The meaning is that the committee did not know whom they were to ask next to make a speech for them: and the allusion is to the game called in Norfolk “Stir up the dumplings,” and by girls “Kiss in the ring.”
Handkerchief and Sword
With handkerchief in one hand and sword in the other. Pretending to be sorry at a calamity, but prepared to make capital out of it.
“Abbé George ... mentions in [a letter] that `Maria Theresa stands with the handkerchief in one hand, weeping for the woes of Poland, but with the sword in the other hand, ready to cut Poland in sections, and take her share.' ” — Carlyle: The Diamond Necklace, chap. iv.
He has a handle to his name. Some title, as “lord,” “sir,” “doctor.” The French say Monsicur sans queue, a man without a tail (handle to his name).
To give a handle to ... To give grounds for suspicion; as, “He certainly gave a handle to the rumour.”
“He gave a handle to his enemies, and threw stumbling—blocks in the way of his friends.” — Hazlitt: Spirit of the Age (James Macintosh), p. 139.
= liberal. To do the thing that is handsome; to act handsomely; to do handsome towards one.
Handwriting on the Wall
(The). An announcement of some coming calamity. The allusion is to the handwriting on Belshazzar's palace—wall announcing the loss of his kingdom. (Dan. v. 5—31.)
Cuffs or blows given by the hand. “Fisticuffs” is now more common.
(To). To hesitate to proceed.
(To). To fail in an expected result. The allusion is to a gun or pistol which fails to go off.
(To). To cling to; to persevere; to be dependent on.
Where do you hang out? Where are you living, or lodging? The allusion is to the custom, now restricted to public—houses, but once very general, of hanging before one's shop a sign indicating the nature of the business carried on within. Druggists often still place coloured bottles in their windows, and some tobacconists place near their shop door the statue of a Scotchman. (See Dickens: Pickwick Papers, chap. xxx.)
(A). A guilty, shamefaced look.
“Look a little brisker, man, and not so hangdog—like.” —Dickens.
Hang by a Thread
(To). To be in a very precarious position. The allusion is to the sword of Damocles. (See Damocles Sword.)
Hang in the Bell Ropes
(To). to be asked at church, and then defer the marriage so that the bells hang fire.
or Strangled. Examples from the ancient classic writers: — (1) AC'HIUS, King of Lydia, endeavoured to raise a new tribute from his subjects and was hanged by the enraged populace, who threw the dead body into the river Pactolus.
(2) AMA'TA, wife of King Latinus, promised her daughter Lavinia to King Turnus; when, however, she was given in marriage to AEneas, Amata Uanged herself that she might not see the hated stranger. (Virgil: Æncid,
vii.) (3) ARACH'NE, the most skilful of needle—women, hanged herself because she was outdone in a trial of skill by Minerva. (Ovid: Metamorphoses, vi. fab. 1.)
(4) AUTOL'YCA, mother of Ulysses, hanged herself in despair on receiving false news of her son's death.
(5) BONO'SUS, a Spaniard by birth, was strangled by the Emperor Probus for assuming the imperial parple in Gaul. (A.D. 280.)
(6) IPHIS, a beautiful youth of Salamis, of mean birth, hanged himself because h s addresses were rejected by Anaxarele a girl of Salamis of similar rank in life. (Ovid: Metamorphoses, xiv. 708, etc.)
(7) LATI'NUS, wife of. (See Amata,ábove.) (8) LYCAM'BES, father of Neobula, who hétrothed her to Archilochos, the poet. He broke his promise, and gave her in marriage to a wealthier man. Archilochos so scourged them by his satires that both father and daughter banged themselves.
(9) NEOBU'LA. (See above.)
(10) PHYLLIS, Queen of Thrace, the accepted of Demoph'oön, who stopped on her coasts on his return from Troy. Demophoön was called away to Athens, and promised to return; but, failing so to do, Phyllis hanged herself.
Hanged, Drawn, and Quartered
Hanged, drawn, and quartered, or Drawn, hanged, and quartered. The question turns on the meaning of drawn. The evidence seems to be that traitors were drawn to the place of execution, then hanged, then
“drawn” or disembowelled, and then quartered. Thus the sentence on Sir William Wallace was that he should be drawn (detrahatur) from the Palace of Westminster to the Tower, etc., then hanged (suspendatur), then disembowelled or drawn (devaletur), then beheaded and quartered (decolletur et decapitetur). (See Notes and Queries, August 15th, 1891.)
If by “drawn” is meant conveyed to the place of execution, the phrase should be “Drawn, hanged, and quartered;” but if the word is used as a synonym of disembowelled, the phrase should be “Hanged, drawn, and quartered.”
“Lord Ellenborough used to say to those condemned. `You are drawn on hurdles to the place of execution, where you are to be hanged, but not till you are dead; for, while still living, your body is to be taken down, your bowels torn out and burnt before your face; your head is then cut off, and your body divided into four quarters.” — Gentleman's Magazine, 1803, part i. pp. 177,275.
Drawn Battle A battle in which the troops on both sides are drawn off, neither combatants claiming the victory.
(A). Properly the fringed loop or strap hung to the girdle by which the dagger was suspended, but applied by a common figure of speech to the sword or dagger itself.
“Men's swords in hangers hang fast by their side.” — J.Taylor (1630).
Hanging and wiving go by destiny. “If a man is doomed to be hanged, he will never be drowned.” And “marriages are made in heaven,” we are told.
“If matrimony and hanging go
By destny, why not whipping too?
What medcine else can cure the fits
Of lovers when they lose their wits?
Love is a boy, by poets styled.
Then spare the rod and spoil the child.”
Butler: Hudibras, part ii. canto i. 839—844.
(The). The custom of taking six months' grace in the payment of rent which prevailed in Ireland.
“We went to collect the rents due the 25th March, but which, owing to the custom which prevails in Ireland known as `the hanging gale,' are never demanded till the 29th September.” — The Times, November, 1885.
Hanging Gardens of Babylon
Four acres of garden raised on a base supported by pillars, and towering in terraces one above another 300 feet in height. At a distance they looked like a vast pyramid covered with trees. This mound was constructed by Nebuchadnezzar to gratify his wife Amytis, who felt weary of the flat plains of Babylon, and longed for something to remind her of her native Median hills. One of the “seven wonders of the world.”
Hangman's Acre, Gains, and Gain's Alley
(London), in the liberty of St. Catherine. Strype says it is a corruption of “Hammes and Guynes,” so called because refugees from those places were allowed to lodge there in the reign of Queen Mary after the loss of Calais. (See also Stow: History, vol. ii.; list of streets.)
131/2d. The fee given to the executioner at Tyburn, with 1 1/2d. for the rope. This was the value of a Scotch merk, and therefore points to the reign of James, who decreed that “the coin of silver called the mark—piece shall be current within the kingdom at the value of 13 1/2d.” Noblemen who were to be beheaded were expected to give the executioner from 7 to 10 for cutting off their head.
“For half of thirteen—pence ha'penny wages
I would have cleared all the town cages,
And you should have been rid of all the stages I and my gallows groan.”
The Hangman's Last Will and Testament. (Rump Songe.
The present price (1894) is about 40. Calcraft's charge was 33 14s., plus assistant 5 5s., other fees 1 1s., to which he added “expenses for erecting the scaffold.”
and Executioners. (1) BULL is the earliest hangman whose name survives (about 1593). (2) JOCK SUTHERLAND.
(3) DERRICK, who cut off the head of Essex in 1601.
(4) GREGORY. Father and son, mentioned by Sir Walter Scott (1647). (5) GREGORY BRANDON, (about 1648).
(6) RICHARD BRANDON, his son, who executed Charles I.
(7) SQUIRE DUN, mentioned by Hudibras (part iii. c. 2).
(8) JACK KETCH (1678) executed Lord Russell and the Duke of Monmouth. (9) ROSE, the butcher (1686): but Jack Ketch was restored to office the same year. (10) EDWARD DENNIS (1780), introduced as a character in Dickens's Barnaby Rudge. (11) THOMAS CHESHIRE, nicknamed “Old Cheese.”
(12) JOHN CALCRAFT; MARWOOD; BERRY; etc.
(13) Of foreign executioners, the most celebrated are Little John; Capeluche, headsman of Paris during the terrible days of the Armagnacs and Burgundians; and the two brothers Sanson, who were executioners during the first French Revolution.
Hudibras, under the name of Dun, “personates” Sir Arthur Hazelrig, “the activest” of the five members impeached by King Charles I. The other four were Monk, Walton, Morley, and Alured.
This escutcheon used to be added to the arms of England; it was placed in the centre of the shield to show that the House of Hanover came to the crown by election, and not by conquest. Conquerors strike out arms of a conquered country, and place their own in lieu.
Hans von Rippach
[rip—pak ]. Jack of Rippach, a Monsieur Nong—tong—pas — i.e. someone asked for who does not exist. A gay German spark calls at a house and asks for Herr Hans von Rippach. Rippach is a village near Leipsic.
The printed records of Bills before Parliament, the reports of committees, parliamentary debates, and some of the national accounts. Till the business was made into a company the reports commanded a good respect, but in 1892 the company was wound up. Luke Hansard, the founder of the business came from Norwich, and was born in 1752.
Other parliamentary business was printed by other firms.
The maritime cities of Germany, which belonged to the Hanseatic League (q.v.).
“The Hanse towns of Lübeck, Bremen, and Hamburg are commonwealths even now (1877).” — Freeman: General Sketch, chap.x. p. 174.
The first trade union; it was established in the twelfth century by certain cities of Northern Germany for their mutual prosperity and protection. The diet which used to be held every three years was called the Hansa, and the members of it Hansards. The league in its prosperity comprised eighty—five towns; it declined rapidly in the Thirty Years' War; in 1669 only six cities were represented; and the last three members of the league (Hamburg, Lübeck, and Bremen) joined the German Customs Unions' in 1889.
(German, am—see, on the sea; and the league was originally called the Am—sec—staaten, free cities on the sea.)
A gift or bribe, the first money received in a day. Hence Hansel Monday, the first Monday of the year. To “hansel our swords” is to use them for the first time. In Norfolk we hear of hanselling a coat — i.e. wearing it for the first time. Lemon tells us that superstitious people will spit on the first money taken at market for luck, and Misson says, “Its le baisent en le recevant, craschent dessus, et le mettent dans une poche apart. ” (Travels in England, p. 192.)
The Monday after New—Year's Day, when “hansels,” or free gifts, were given in Scotland to servants and children. Our boxing—day is the first weekday after Christmas Day. (Anglo—Saxon, handselen; hand and sellan, to give.)
Hansom (A). A light two—wheeled cab, in which the driver sits behind the vehicle, and communicates with the passenger through a trap—door in the roof. Invented by Aloysius Hansom of York (1803—1882). Hansom was by trade an architect at Birmingham and at Hinckley in Leicestershire.
(2 syl.). The giant flycatcher. He invented the art of drying and smoking neats' tongues. (Duchat: OEuvres de Rabelavs.)
A mistranslation of the Latin Arabia felix, which means simply on the right hand — i.e. to the right hand of Al—Shan (Syria). It was Ptolemy who was the author of the threefold division Arabia Petraea, miscalled “Stony Arabia,” but really so called from its chief city Petra; Arabia Felix (or Yemen), the south—west coast; and as for Arabia deserta (meaning the interior) probably he referred to Nedjaz.
(A). A wellturned phrase; a word or phrase peculiarly apt. The French also say “Une heureuse expression, ” and “S'exprimer heureusement. “
(A). One indifferent to his interests; one who looks to good luck to befriend him.
in Dr. Johnson's tale of Rasselas, is placed in the kingdom of Amhara, and was inaccessible except in one spot through a cave in a rock. It was a Garden of Paradise where resided the princes of Abyssinia.
Happy as a Clam at High Tide
The clam is a bivalve mollusc, dug from its bed of sand only at low tide; at high tide it is quite safe from molestation. (See Close As A Clam.)
Happy as a King
This idea of happiness is wealth, position, freedom, and luxurious living; but Richard II. says a king is “Woe's slave” (iii. 2).
On the happiness of kings, see Shakespeare: Henry V., iv. 1.
Happy the People whose Annals are Tiresome
(Montesquieu.) Of course, wars, rebellions, troubles, make up the most exciting parts of history.
(See Habsburg .)
The first person of the Scandinavian Trinity, which consists of Har (the Mighty), the Like Mighty, and the Third Person. This Trinity is called “The Mysterious Three,” and they sit on three thrones above the Rainbow. The next in order are the AEsir (q.v.), of which Odin, the chief, lives in Asgard, on the heavenly hills between Earth and the Rainbow. The third order is the Vanir (see Van) — the gods of the ocean, air, and clouds — of which Van Niord is the chief. Har has already passed his ninth incarnation; in his tenth he will take the forms first of a peacock, and then of a horse, when all the followers of Mahomet will be destroyed.
in Indian mythology, is the second person of the Trinity.
or Harem, means in Arabic forbidden, or not to be violated; a name given by Mahometans to those apartments which are appropriated exclusively to the female members of a family.
A descendant of Og and Anak, a giant of Gath, who went to mock Samson in prison, but durst not venture within his reach. The word means the giant. (Milton: Samson Agonistes.)
One who looks out for lodgings, etc.: a courier; hence, a fore—runner, a messenger. (Anglo—Saxon, here, an army; bergan, to lodge.)
“I'll be myself the harbinger, and make joyful
The hearing of my wife with your approach.” Shakespeare: Macbeth, i. 4.
Harcourt's Round Table
A private conference in the house of Sir William Harcourt, January 14, 1887, with the view of reuniting, if possible, the Liberal party, broken up by Mr. Gladstone's Irish policy.
The phrase “Round Table” is American, meaning what the French call a cercle, or club meetings held at each other's houses.
meaning difficult, is like the French dur; as, “hard of hearing,” “qui a l'oreille dure; ” “a hard word,” “un terme dur; ” “'tis a hard case,” “c'est une chose bien dure; “ “hard times,” “les temps sont durs; ” so also “hardly earned,” “qu'on gagne bien durement; ” “hard—featured,” “dont les traits sont durs; ” “hard—hearted,” “qui a le coeur dur, ” and many other phrases.
Near. Hard means close, pressed close together; hence firm or solid, in close proximity to.
“Hard by a sheltering wood.”
David Mallet: Edwin and Emma.
Hard terms; “rather rough treatment;” exacting. Lines mean lot or allotment (measured out by a line measure), as, “The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage,” i.e. my allotment is excellent. Hard lines = an unfavourable allotment (or task).
“That was hard lines upon me, after I had given up everything.” — G. Eliot.
Short of money. “N'avoir pas de quibus. ” “Up” often = out, as, “used up,” “worn out,” “done up,” etc. “Hard up” = nearly out [of cash]. In these, and all similar examples, “Up” is the Old English ofer, over; Latin, s—uper; Greek
Hard as Nails
Stern, hard—hearted, unsympathetic; able to stand hard blows like nails. Religious bigotry, straitlacedness, rigid puritanical pharisaism, make men and women “hard as nails.”
“I know I'm as hard as nails already; I don't want to get more so.” — Edna Lyall: Donovan. chap. xxiii.
Hard as a Stone
“hard as iron,” “hard as brawn,” “hard as ice,” “hard as adamant,” etc. (See Similes.)
Hard as the Nether Millstone
Unfeeling, obdurate. The lower or “nether” of the two millstones is firmly fixed and very hard; the upper stone revolves round it on a shaft, and the corn, running down a tube inserted in the upper stone, is ground by the motion of the upper stone round the lower one. Of course, the upper wheel is made to revolve by some power acting on it, as wind, water, or some other mechanical force.
(2 syl.). E'on Hardouin would not object. Said in apology of an historical or chronological incident introduced into a treatise against which some captious persons take exception. Jean Hardouin, the learned Jesuit, was librarian to Louis le Grand. He was so fastidious that he doubted the truth of all received history, denied the authenticity of the Æneid of Virgil, the Odes of Horace, etc.; placed no faith in medals and coins, regarded all councils before that of Trent as chimerical, and looked on Descartes, Malebranche, Pascal, and all Jansenists as infidels. (1646—1729).
“Even Père Hardouin would not enter his pro test against such a collection.” — Dr. A. Clarke: Essay.
(Letitia). Heroine of the Belle's Stratagem, by Mrs. Cowley. She is a young lady of fortune destined to marry Doricourt. She first assumes the air of a raw country hoyden and disgusts the fastidious man of fashion; then she appears at a masquerade and wins him. The marriage is performed at midnight, and Doricourt does not know that the masquerader and hoyden are the same Miss Hardy till after the ceremony is over.
HARDY (The, i.e. brave or daring, hence the phrase, “hardi comme un lion. ' (1) William Douglas, defender of Berwick (died 1302).
(2) Philippe III. of France, le Hardi (1245, 1270—1285).
(3) Philippe II., Duc de Bourgogne, le Hardi (1342, 1363—1382).
It is unlucky for a hare to cross your path, because witches were said to transform themselves into hares.
“Nor did we meet, with nimble feet,
One little fearful lepus;
That certain sign, as some diyine,
Of fortune bad to keep us.”
Ellison: Trip to Benwell, Ix.
In the Flamborough Village and Headland, we are told, “if a fisherman on his way to the boats happens to meet a woman, parson, or hare, he will turn back, being convinced that he will have no luck that day.”
Antipathy to hares. Tycho Brahe (2 syl.) would faint at the sight of a hare; the Duc d'Epernon at the sight of a leveret; Marshal de Brééat sight of a rabbit; and Henri III., the Duke of Schomberg, and the chamberlain of the emperor Ferdinand, at the sight of a cat. (See Antipathy.)
First catch your hare. (See Catch.)
Hold with the hare and run with the hounds. To play a double and deceitful game, to be a traitor in the camp. To run with the hounds as if intent to catch the hare, but all the while being the secret friend of poor Wat. In the American war these double—dealers were called Copperheads (q.v.).
Mad as a March hare. Hares are unusually shy and wild in March, which is their rutting season . Erasmus says “Mad as a marsh hare,” and adds, “hares are wilder in marshes from the absence of hedges
and cover.” (Aphorisms, p. 266; 1542.)
Melancholy as a hare (Shakespeare: 1 Henry IV., i. 2). According to mediaeval quackery, the flesh of hare was supposed to generate melancholy; and all foods imparted their own speciality.
The quaking hare, in Dryden's Hind and Panther, means the Quakers.
“Among the timorous kind, the quaking hare
Professed neutrality, but would not swear.”
Part i. 37, 38.
or Hair—brained. Mad as a March hare, giddy, foolhardy.
“Let's leave this town; for they [the English] are hair—brained slaves,
And hunger will enforce them to be more eager.” Shakespeare: 1 Henry VI., i. 2.
Swift of foot as a hare. The surname given to Harold I., youngest son of Canute (1035—1040).
To kiss the hare's foot. To be too late for anything, to be a day after the fair. The hare has gone by, and left its foot—print for you to salute. A similar phrase is To kiss the post.
A cleft lip; so called from its resemblance to the upper lip of a hare. It was said to be the mischievous act of an elf or malicious fairy.
“This is the foul flend Flibbertigibbet. He begins at curfew, and walks till the first cock. He ... squints the eye and makes the hare—lip.” — Shakespeare: King Lear, iii. 4.
Hour—stone Boundary stone in the parish of Sancred (Cornwall), with a heap of stones round it. It is thought that these stones were set up for a similar purpose as the column set up by Laban (Genesis xxxi. 51, 52). “Behold this heap, and behold this pillar,” said Laban to Jacob, “which I have cast betwixt me and thee. This heap be witness, and this pillar be witness, that I will not pass over this heap to thee, and that thou shalt not pass over this heap unto me, for harm.” (Anglo—Saxon, hora, or horu stan.) (See Harold's stones.)
Hare and the Tortoise
(The). Everyone knows the fable of the race between the hare and the tortoise, won by the latter; and the moral, “Slow and steady wins the race.” The French equivalent is “Pas à pas le boeuf prend le lièvre. '
Hares shift their Sex
It was once thought that hares are sexless, or that they change their sex every year.
“Lepores omnes utrumque sexum habent.
“Snakes that cast their coats for new,
Cameleons that alter hue,
Hares that yearly sexes change.”
Fletcher: Faithful Shepherd, iii. 1.
A ragout made with hashed mutton and turnips. In old French harigot, harligot, and haligote are found meaning a “morsel,” a “piece.”
“Et li chevalier tuit monté,
Detaillie et dehaligoté.”
Chauvenci: Les Tournois, p. 138.
[Happy despatch. ] A method of enforcing suicide by disembowelling among Japanese officials when government considered them worthy of death.
(To). To return to the subject. “Revenons à nos moutons ” (q.v.). A call to the dogs in
fox—hunting, when they have overrun the scent, “Hark [dogs] come back”; so “Hark forards!” “Hark away!” etc.
means a species of drama in two parts, the introduction and the harlequinade, acted in dumb show. The prototype is the Roman atellanæ but our Christmas pantomime or harlequinade is essentially a British entertainment, first introduced by Mr. Weaver, a dancing—master of Shrewsbury, in 1702. (See below.)
“What Momus was of old to Jove,
The same a harlequin is now.
The former was buffoon above,
The latter is a Punch below.”
Swift: The Puppet Show.
The Roman mime did not at all correspond with our harlequinade. The Roman mimus is described as having a shorn head, a sooty face, flat unshod feet, and a patched parti—coloured cloak.
Harlequin, in the British pantomime, is a sprite supposed to be invisible to all eyes but those of his faithful Columbine. His office is to dance through the world and frustrate all the knavish tricks of the Clown, who is supposed to be in love with Columbine. In Armoric, Harlequin means “a juggler,” and Harlequin metamorphoses everything he touches with his magic wand.
The prince of Harlequins was John Rich (1681—1761).
Harlequin. So Charles Quint was called by Francois I. of France.
is said to be derived from Harlotta, the mother of William the Conqueror, but it is more likely to be a corruption of horlet (a little hireling), “hore” being the past participle of hyran (to hire). It was once applied to males as well as females. Hence Chaucer speaks of “a sturdy harlot ... that was her hostes man.” The word varlet is another form of it.
“He was gentil harlot, and a kinde;
A bettre felaw shulde man no wher finde
Chaucer: Canterbury Tales, prol. 649.
“The harlot king is quite beyond mine arm.”
Shakespeare: Winter's Tale, ii. 3.
Proverbial names for a harlot are Aholibah and Aholah (Ezek. xxiii. 4), probably symbolic characters; Petrowna (of Russia), and Messalina (of Rome).
(Clarissa). The heroine of Richardson's novel of that name. In order to avoid a marriage urged upon her by her parents, she casts herself on the protection of a lover, who grossly abuses the confidence thus reposed in him. He subsequently proposes to marry her, but Clarissa rejects the offer, and retires from the world to cover her shame and die.
Harm set, harm get. Those who lay traps for others get caught themselves. Haman was hanged on his own gallows. Our Lord says, “They that take the sword shall perish with the sword” (Matt. xxvi. 52).
Harmless as a Dove (Matt. x. 16.)
An unlucky possession, something that brings evil to all who possess it. Harmonia was the daughter of Mars and Venus. On the day of her marriage with King Cadmos, she received a necklace which proved fatal to all who possessed it.
The collar given by Alphesibea (or Arsinoë) to her husband Alcmaeon was a like fatal gift. So were the collar and veil of Eriphyle, wife of Amphiaraos, and the Trojan horse. (See Fatal Gifts.)
On the marriage of Harmonia, Vulcan, to avenge the infidelity of her mother, made the bride a present of a robe dyed in all sorts of crimes, which infused wickedness and impiety into all her offspring. Both Harmonia and Cadmos, after having suffered many misfortunes, and seen their children a sorrow to them, were changed into serpents. (Pausanias, 9, 10.) (See Nessus.)
Medea, in a fit of jealousy, sent Creusa a wedding robe, which burnt her to death. (Euripides Medea.
To die in harness. To continue in one's work or occupation till death. The allusion is to soldiers in armour or harness.
“At least we'll die with harness on our back.”
Shakespeare: Macheth, v. 5.
A large cask or tub with a rim cover, containing a supply of salt, meat for immediate use. Nautical term.
(University of Cambridge), founded by the Rev. William Harness for the best essay connected with Shakespearian literature. Awarded every third year .
To cry out haro to anyone. To denounce his misdeeds, to follow him with hue and cry. “Ha rou” was the ancient Norman hue—and—cry, and the exclamation made by those who wanted assistance, their person or property being in danger. It is similar to our cry of “Police!” Probably our halloo is the same word.
In the Channel Isles, Ha! ho! àl'aide, mon prince! is a protest still in vogue when one's property is endangered, or at least was so when I lived in Jersey. It is supposed to be an appeal to Rollo, king of Normandy, to come to the aid of him suffering wrongfully.
Harold the Dauntless
Son of Witikind, the Dane. “He was rocked on a buckler, and fed from a blade.” He became a Christian, like his father, and married Eivir, a Danish maid, who had been his page. (Sir W. Scott: Harold the Dauntless.)
at Trelech (Monmouthshire). Three stones, one of which is fourteen feet above the ground, evidently no part of a circle. Probably boundary stones. (See Hare—Stone.)
and Maroot. Two angels who, in consequence of their want of compassion to man, are susceptible of human passions, and are sent upon earth to be tempted. They were at one time kings of Babel, and are still the teachers of magic and the black arts.
Haroun al Raschid
Calif of the East, of the Abbasside race. (765—809.) His adventures form a part of the Arabian Nights' Entertainments.
The arms of Ireland. According to tradition, one of the early kings of Ireland was named David, and this king took for arms the harp of Israel's sweet Psalmist. Probably the harp is altogether a blunder, arising from the triangle invented in the reign of John to distinguish his Irish coins from the English. The reason why a triangle was chosen may have been in allusion to St. Patrick's explanation of the Trinity, or more likely to signify that he was king of England, Ireland, and France. Henry VIII. was the first to assume the harp positive as the Irish device, and James I. to place it in the third quarter of the royal achievement of Great Britain.
To harp for ever on the same string. To be for ever teasing one about the same subject. There is a Latin proverb, Eandem cantilenam recinere. I once heard a man with a clarionet play the first half of “In my cottage near a wood” for more than an hour, without cessation or change. It was in a crowded market—place, and the annoyance became at last so unbearable that he collected a rich harvest to move on.
“Still harping on my daughter.” — Shakespeare: Hamlet, ii. 1.
Harpagon (A). A miser. Harpagon is the name of the miser in Molière's comedy called L'Avare.
(4 syl.). A Thracian virago, who liberated her father Harpalicos when he was taken prisoner by the Getae.
“With such array Harpalice bestrode”
Her Thracian courser.” Dryden.
(2 syl.). The cutlass with which Mercury killed Argus; and with which Perseus subsequently cut off the head of Medusa.
(2 syl.). Vultures with the head and breasts of a woman, very fierce and loathsome, living in an atmosphere of filth and stench, and contaminating everything which they came near. Homer mentions but one harpy. Hesiod gives two, and later writers three. The names indicate that these monsters were personifications of whirlwinds and storms. Their names were Ocypeta (rapid), Celeno (blackness), and Aëll'o (storm). (Greek harpuiai, verb harpazo, to seize; Latin harpyia. See Virgil: Æneid, iii. 219, etc.).
He is a regular harpy. One who wants to appropriate everything; one who sponges on another without mercy.
“I will ... do you any embassage ... rather than hold three words conference with this harpy.” — Shakespeare: Much Ado About Nothing, ii. 1.
(4 syl.). The Greek form of the Egyptian god Har—pi—kruti (Horus the Child), made by the Greeks and Romans the god of silence. This arose from a pure misapprehension. It is an Egyptian god, and was represented with its “finger on its mouth,” to indicate youth, but the Greeks thought it was a symbol of silence.
“I assured my mistress she might make herself perfectly easy on that score [his mentioning a certain matter to anyone], for I was the Harpocrates of trusty valets.” — Gil Blas, iv. 2 (1715).
A haggard old beldame. So called from the French haridelle, a worn—out jade of a horse.
(3 syl.). A dog for hare—hunting, whence the name.
A farthing. So called from Lord Harrington, to whom James I. granted a patent for making them of brass. Drunken Barnaby says —
“Thence to Harrington be it spoken,
For name—sake I gave a token
To a beggar that did crave it.”
Drunken Barnaby's Journal.'
“I will not bate a Harrington of the sum.”
Ben Jonson: The Devil is an Ass, ii. 1.
Mrs. Harris. An hypothetical lady, to whom Sarah Gamp referred for the corroboration of all her statements, and the bank on which she might draw to any extent for self—praise. (Dickens: Martin Chuzzlewit.) (See Brooks Of Sheffield.)
“Not Mrs. Harris in the immortal narrative was more quoted and more mythical.” — Lord Lytton.
Harry (To) = to harass. Facetiously said to be derived from Harry VIII. of England, who no doubt played up old Harry with church property. Of course, the real derivation is the Anglo—Saxon herian, to plunder, from hare (2 syl.), an army.
Old Harry. Old Scratch. To harry (Saxon) is to tear in pieces, whence our harrow. There is an ancient pamphlet entitled The Harrowing of Hell. I do not think it is a corruption of “Old Hairy,” although the Hebrew Seirim (hairy ones) is translated devils in Lev. xvii. 7, and no doubt alludes to the he—goat, an object of worship with the Egyptians. Moses says the children of Israel are no longer to sacrifice to devils (seirim), as they did in Egypt. There is a Scandinavian Hari = Baal or Bel.
A student at Cambridge who has “declared” for Law or Physic, and wears a full—sleeve gown. The word is a corruption of the Greek Heri—sophos (more than a Soph or common second—year student).
The tale goes that at the destruction of the monasteries, in the reign of Henry VIII., certain students waited to see how matters would turn out before they committed themselves by taking a clerical degree, and that these men were thence called Sophistæ Henriciani, or “Henry Sophisters.”
In Christian art, the emblem of solitude and purity of life. It was the attribute of St. Hubert, St. Julian, and St. Eustace. It was also the type of piety and religious aspiration. (Psalm xlii. 1.) (See Hind.)
The White Hart, or hind, with a golden chain, in public—house signs, is the badge of Richard II., which was worn by all his courtiers and adherents. It was adopted from his mother, whose cognisance was a white hind.
A male red deer, when the crown of the antler has made its appearance, and the creature has been hunted by a king.
Hart of Grease
(A). A hunter's phrase for a fat venison; a stag full of the pasture, called by Jaques “a fat and greasy citizen.” (As You Like It, i. 1.) (See Heart Of Grace.)
“It is a hart of grease, too, in full season, with three inches of fat on the brisket.” — Sir W. Scott: The Monastery, chap. xvii.
There are four harts in the tree Yggdrasil', an eagle and a squirrel; and a serpent gnaws its root.
The daughter of Rukenaw (the ape's wife) in the tale of Reynard the Fox. The word in old German means hard or strong strife.
A hare—brained person who scares quiet folk. Some derive it from the French clameur de Haro (hue and cry), as if the madcap was one against whom the hue—and—cry is raised; but probably it is simply a jingle word having allusion to the “madness of a March hare, ” and the “scaring” of honest folks from their proprieties.
“Who's there? I s'pose young harum—scarum.”
Cambridge Facetiæ Collegian and Porter
(pl. harus' pices). Persons who interpreted the will of the gods by inspecting the entrails of animals offered in sacrifice (old Latin, haruga, a victim; specio, I inspect). Cato said, “I wonder how one haruspex can keep from laughing when he sees another.”
in the United States, endowed by the Rev. John Harvard in 1639. Founded 1636.
A corruption of Arvyst Gos (a stubble goose). (See Wayz—Goose.)
“A young wife and an arvyst gos,
Moche gagil [clatter] with both.”
The full moon nearest the autumnal equinox. The peculiarity of this moon is that it rises for several days nearly at sunset, and about the same time.
(A). A mess, a muddle; as, “a pretty hash he made of it.” A hash is a mess, and a mess is a muddle.
I'll soon settle his hash for him. I will soon smash him up; ruin his schemes; “give him his gruel”; `cook his goose”; “put my finger in his pie”; “make mince—meat of him.” (See Cooking.)
Caliph of the Ottoman empire; noted for his hospitality and splendour. His palace was daily thronged with guests, and in his seraglio was a beautiful young slave named Leila (2 syl.), who had formed an unfortunate attachment to a Christian called the Giaour. Leila is put to death by an emir and Hassan is slain by the Giaour near Mount Parnassus. (Byron: The Giaour.)
Al Hassan. The Arabian emir' of Persia, father of Hinda, in Moore's Fire—Worshippers. He was victorious at the battle of Cadessia, and thus became master of Persia.
The Old Man of the Mountain, founder of the sect of the Assassins. In Rymer's Foedera are two letters by this sheik.
A doss or footstool made of hesg (sedge or rushes).
“Hassocks should be gotten in the fens, and laid at the foot of the said bank ... where need required.” — Dugdale:Imbanking, p. 322.
“The knees and hassocks are well—nigh divorced.” Cowper.
How Lord Kingsale acquired the right of wearing his hat in the royal presence is this: King John and Philippe II. of France agreed to settle a dispute respecting the duchy of Normandy by single combat. John de Courcy, Earl of Ulster, was the English champion, and no sooner put in his appearance than the French champion put spurs to his horse and fled. The king asked the earl what reward should be given him, and he replied, “Titles and lands I want not, of these I have enough; but in remembrance of this day I beg the boon, for myself and successors, to remain covered in the presence of your highness and all future sovereigns of the realm.”
Lord Forester, it is said, possessed the same right, which was confirmed by Henry VIII. The Somerset Herald wholly denies the right in regard to Lord Kingsale; and probably that of Lord Forester is without foundation. (See Notes and Queries, Dec. 19th, 1885, p. 504.)
On the other hand, the privilege sees at one time to have been not unusual, for Motley informs us that “all the Spanish grandees had the privilege of being covered in the presence of the reigning monarch. Hence, when the Duke of Alva presented himself before Margaret, Duchess of Parma, she bade him to be covered.” (Dutch Republic.
A cockle hat. A pilgrim's hat. So called from the custom of putting cockle—shells upon their hats, to indicate
their intention or performance of a pilgrimage.
“How should I your true love know
From another one?
By his cockle—bat and staff,
And his sandal shoon.”
Shakespeare: Hamlet, iv. 5.
A BROWN HAT. Never wear a brown hat in Friesland. When at Rome do as Rome does. If people have a very strong prejudice, do not run counter to it. Friesland is a province of the Netherlands, where the inhabitants cut their hair short, and cover the head first with a knitted cap, then a high silk skull—cap, then a metal turban, and lastly a huge flaunting bonnet. Four or five dresses always constitute the ordinary head gear. A traveller once passed through the province with a common brown chimney—hat or wide—awake, but was hustled by the workmen, jeered at by the women, pelted by the boys, and sneered at by the magnates as a regular guy. If you would pass quietly through this “enlightened” province never wear there a brown hat.
A STEEPLE—CROWNED HAT. You are only fit to wear a steeple—crowned hat. To be burnt as a heretic. The victims of the Autos—da—Fé of the “Holy” Inquisition were always decorated with such a head—gear.
A white hat. A white hat used to be emblematical of radical proclivities, because Orator Hunt, the great demagogue, used to wear one during the Wellington and Peel administration.
The street arabs of Nottingham—shire used to accost a person wearing a white hat with the question, “Who stole the donkey?” and a companion used to answer, “Him wi' the white bat on.”
Pass round the hat. Gather subscriptions into a hat. To eat one's hat. “Hattes are made of eggs, veal, dates, saffron, salt, and so forth.” (Robina Napier: Boke of Cookry.
The Scotch have the word hattit—kit or hatted—kit, a dish made chiefly of sour cream, new milk, or butter—milk.
To hang up one's hat in a house. To make oneself at home; to become master of a house. Visitors, making a call, carry their hats in their hands.
A small gratuity given to the master of a ship, by passengers, for his care and trouble, originally collected in a hat at the end of a good voyage.
Hats and Caps
Two political factions of Sweden in the eighteenth century, the former favourable to France, and the latter to Russia. Carlyle says the latter were called caps, meaning night—caps, because they were averse to action and war; but the fact is that the French partisans wore a French chapeau as their badge, and the Russian partisans wore a Russian cap.
Put on the hatches. Figuratively, shut the door. (Anglo—Saxon, hæc a gate. Compare haca, a bar or bolt.)
Under hatches. Dead and buried. The hatches of a ship are the coverings over the hatchways (or openings in the deck of a vessel) to allow of cargo, etc., being easily discharged.
“And though his soul has gone aloft,
His body's under hatches.”
[Greek axine, Latin ascia, Italian accetta, French hachette, our hatchet and axe.)
To bury the hatchet. (See Bury.)
To throw the hatchet. To tell false—hoods. In allusion to an ancient game where hatchets were thrown at a mark, like quoits. It means the same as drawing the long—bow (q.v.).
Hatchway (Lieutenant Jack). A retired naval officer, the companion of Commodore Trunnion, in Smollett's Peregrine Pickle.
[the deadly ]. One of Mahomet's swords, confiscated from the Jews when they were exiled from Medina. (See Swords.)
An ecclesiastical sect in Holland; so called from Pontin von Hattem, of Zealand (seventeenth century). They denied the expiatory sacrifice of Christ, and the corruption of human nature.
(Dirk). Also called “Jans Janson.” A Dutch smuggler imprisoned with lawyer Glossin for kidnapping Henry Bertrand. During the night Glossin contrived to enter the smuggler's cell, when a quarrel ensued. Hatteraick strangled Glossin, and then hanged himself. (Sir Walter Scott: Guy Mannering.)
Archbishop of Mainz, according to tradition, was devoured by mice. The story says that in 970 there was a great famine in Germany, and Hatto, that there might be better store for the rich, assembled the poor in a barn, and burnt them to death, saying, “They are like mice, only good to devour the corn.” By and by an army of mice came against the arch bishop, and the abbot, to escape the plague, removed to a tower on the Rhine, but hither came the mouse—army by hundreds and thousands, and ate the bishop up. The tower is still called Mouse—tower. Southey has a ballad on the subject, but makes the invaders an army of rats. (See Mouse Tower; Pied Piper.)
“And in at the windows, and in at the door,
And through the walls by thousands they pour, And down through the ceiling, and up through the floor, From the right and the left, from behind and before, From within and without, from above and below
And all at once to the bishop they go.
They have wetted their teeth against the stones,
And now they are picking the bishop's bones; They gnawed the flesh from every limb,
For they were sent to do judgment on him.”
Southey: Bishop Hatto.
A very similar legend is told of Count Graaf, a wicked and powerful chief, who raised a tower in the midst of the Rhine for the purpose of exacting tolls. If any boat or barge attempted to evade the exaction, the warders of the tower shot the crew with cross—bows. Amongst other ways of making himself rich was buying up corn. One year a sad famine prevailed, and the count made a harvest of the distress; but an army of rats, pressed by hunger, invaded his tower, and falling on the old baron, worried him to death, and then devoured him. (Legends of the Rhine.)
Widerolf, bishop of Strasburg (in 997), was devoured by mice in the seventeenth year of his episcopate, because he suppressed the convent of Seltzen, on the Rhine.
Bishop Adolf of Cologne was devoured by mice or rats in 1112. Frei herr von Güttengen collected the poor in a great barn, and barnt them to death; and being invaded by rats and mice, ran to his castle of Güttingen. The vermin, however, pursued him and ate him clean to the bones, after which his castle sank to the bottom of the lake, “where it may still be seen.”
A similar tale is recorded in the chronicles of William of Mulsburg, book ii. p. 313 (Bone's edition). Mice or rats. Giraldus Cambrensis says. The larger sort of mice are called rats. (Itinerary, book xi. 2.) On the other hand, many rats are called mice, as mustela Alpina, the mus Indicus, the mus aquaticus, the mus Pharaonis, etc.
Hatton The dancing chancellor. Sir Christopher Hatton was brought up to the law, but became a courtier, and attracted the attention of Queen Elizabeth by his very graceful dancing at a masque. The queen took him into favour, and soon made him both chancellor and knight of the garter. (He died in 1591.)
“His bushy beard, and shoestrings green,
His high—crowned hat and satin doublet,
Moved the stout heart of England's queen,
Though Pope and Spaniard could not trouble it.” Gray.
(London). The residence of Sir Christopher Hatton, the dancing chancellor. (See above.)
Haul over the Coals
Take to task. Jamieson thinks it refers to the ordeal by fire, a suggestion which is favoured by the French corresponding phrase, mettre sur la sellette (to put on the culprit's stool).
The pulling down and building up anew of streets and cities, as Baron Haussmann remodelled Paris. In 1868 he had saddled Paris with a debt of about twenty—eight millions.
(pron. Ho'—ooy). A strawberry; so called either from the haut bois (high woods) of Bohemia whence it was imported, or from its haut—bois (long—stalk). The latter is the more probable, and furnishes the etymology of the musical instrument also, which has a long mouth—reed.
The sword of Oliver the Dane. (See Sword .)
at Stanton Drew, in the manor of Keynsham. The tradition is that this coit was thrown there by the champion giant, Sir John Hautville, from Mary's Knolle Hill, about a mile off, the place of his abode. The stone on the top of the hill, once thirty tons' weight, is said to have been the clearing of the giant's spade.
The same is said of the Gogmagog of Cambridge.
Have a Care!
“Prenez garde! ” Shakespeare has the expression “Have mind upon your health!” (Julius Caesar, iv. 3.)
Have a Mind for it
(To). To desire to possess it; to wish for it. Mind = desire, intention, is by no means uncommon: “I mind to tell him plainly what I think.” (2 Henry VI., act iv. 1.) “I shortly mind to leave you.” (2 Henry VI., act iv. 1.)
Have at You
To be about to aim a blow at another; to attack another.
“Have at thee with a downright blow.”
Have it Out
(To). To settle the dispute by blows or arguments.
(3 syl.), the orphan son of Birkabegn, King of Denmark, was exposed at sea through the treachery of his guardians, and the raft drifted to the coast of Lincolnshire. Here a fisherman named Grim found the young Prince, and brought him up as his own son. In time it so happened that an English princess stood in the way of certain ambitious nobles, who resolved to degrade her by uniting her to a peasant, and selected the young foundling for the purpose; but Havelok, having learnt the story of his birth, obtained the aid of the king his father to recover his wife's possessions, and became in due time King of Denmark and part of England.
(“Haveloc the Dane,” by the Trouveurs.)
Oaten cakes (Scandinavian, hafre; German, hafer; Latin, avena, oats).
(3 syl.). A simpleton, April—fool. (French, poisson d' Avril; Icelandic, gifr, foolish talk; Scotch, haver, to talk nonsense.)
(Essex). The legend says that while Edward the Confessor was dwelling in this locality, an old pilgrim asked alms, and the king replied, “I have no money, but I have a ring, ” and, drawing it from his fore—finger, gave it to the beggar. Some time after, certain English pilgrims in Jewry met the same man, who drew the ring from his finger and said, “Give this to your king, and say within six months he shall die.” The request was complied with, and the prediction fulfilled. The shrine of Edward the Confessor in Westminster Abbey gives colour to this legend.
Strictly speaking is a bag to carry oats in. (See Haver—Cakes.) It now means a soldier's ration—bag slung from the shoulder; a gunner's leather—case for carrying charges.
A military cry to general massacre without quarter. This cry was forbidden in the ninth year of Richard II. on pain of death. Probably it was originally used in hunting wild beasts, such as wolves, lions, etc., that fell on sheep—folds, and Shakespeare favours this suggestion in his Julius Caesar, where he says Até shall “cry havock! and let slip the dogs of war.” (Welsh, hafog, devastation; Irish, arvach; compare Anglo—Saxon havoc, a hawk.)
(France). A contraction of Le havre de notre dame de grace.
(1) Different parts of a hawk:
Arms. The legs from the thigh to the foot. Beak. The upper and crooked part of the bill. Beams. The long feathers of the wings. Clap. The nether part of the bill.
Feathers summed. Feathers full grown and complete. Feathers unsummed. Feathers not yet full grown. Flags. The next to the longest feathers or principals. Glut. The slimy substance in the pannel.
Gorge. The crow or crop. Haglurs. The spots on the feathers. Mails. The breast feathers.
Nares. The two little holes on the top of the beak. Pannel. The pipe next to the fundament. Pendent feathers. Those behind the toes.
Petty singles. The toes.
Pounces. The claws. Principal feathers. The two longest.
Sails. The wings.
Sear or sere. The yellow part under the eyes. Train. The tail. (2) Different sorts of hawk:
Gerfalcon. A Tercell of a Gerfalcon is for a king Falcon gentle and a Tercel gentle. For a prince. Falcon of the rock. For a duke.
Fulcon peregrine. For an earl. Bastard hawk. For a baron. Sacre and a Sacrit. For a knight. Lanare and Lanrell. For a squire. Merlyn. For a lady.
Hoby. For a young man. Goshawk. For a yeoman. Tercel. For a poor man. Sparehawk. For a priest. Murkyte. For a holy—water clerk. Kesterel. For a knave or servant. Dame Juliana Barnes.
The “Sore—hawk” is a hawk of the first year, so called from the French, sor or saure, brownish—yellow. The “Spar” or “Sparrow” hawk is a small, ignoble hawk (Saxon, speara; Goth, sparwa; cur spare, spur, spur, spear, spire, sparing, sparse, etc; Latin, sparsus; all referring to mindteness).
(3) The dress of a hawk:
Bewits. The leathers with bells, buttoned to a hawk's legs. The bell itself is called a hawk—bell. Creanse. A packthread or thin twine fastened to the leash in disciplining a hawk.
Hood. A cover for the head, to keep the hawk in the dark. A rufter hood is a wide one, open behind. To hood is to put on the hood. To unhood is to take it off. To unstrike the hood is to draw the strings so that the hood may be in readiness to be dulled off.
Jesses. The little straps by which the leash is fastened to the legs. There is the singular jess. Leash. The leather thong for holding the hawk.
(4) Terms used in falconry:
Casting. Something given to a hawk to cleanse her gorge. Cawking. Treading.
Cowering. When young hawks, in obedience to their elders, quiver and shake their wings. Crabbing. Fighting with each other when they stand too near.
Hack. The place where a hawk's meat is laid. Imping. Placing a feather in a hawk's wing. Inke or Ink. The breast and neck of a bird that a hawk preys on. Intermewing. The time of changing the coat.
Lure. A figure of a fowl made of leather and feathers. Make. An old staunch hawk that sets an example to young ones. Mantling. Stretching first one wing and then the other over the legs. Mew. The place where hawks sit when moulting.
Muting. The dung of hawks.
Pelf or pill. What a hawk leaves of her prey. Pelt. The dead body of a fowl killed by a hawk. Perch. The resting—place of a hawk when off the falconer's wrist. Plumage. Small feathers given to a hawk to make her cast.
Quarry. The fowl or game that a hawk flies at. Rangle. Gravel given to a hawk to bring down her stomach. Sharp set. Hungry.
Tiring. Giving a hawk a leg or wing of a fowl to pull at.
The peregrine when full grown is called a blue—hawk.
The hawk was the avatar of Ra or Horus, the sun—god of the Egyptians.
See Birds (protected by superstitions.)
Hawk and Handsaw
I know a hawk from a handsaw. Handsaw is a corruption of hernshaw (a heron). I know a hawk from a heron, the bird of prey from the game flown at. The proverb means, I know one thing from another. (See Hamlet, ii. 2.)
Hawk nor Buzzard
(Neither). Of doubtful social position — too good for the kitchen, and not good enough for the family. Private governesses and pauperised gentlefolk often hold this unhappy position. They are not hawks to be fondled and petted — the “tasselled gentlemen” of the days of falconry — nor yet buzzards — a dull kind of falcon synonymous with dunce or plebeian. In French, “N'être ni chair ni poisson, ” “Neither fresh, fowl, nor good red herring.”
or “Piper's News.” News known to all the world. “Le secret de polichinelle. ” (German hoker, a higgler or hawker.)
(3 syl.). Street bullies in the reign of Queen Anne. It was their delight to molest and ill—treat the old watchmen, women, children, and feeble old men who chanced to be in the streets after sunset. The succession of these London pests after the Restoration was in the following order: The Muns, the Tityré Tus, the Hectors, the Scourers, the Nickers, then the Hawkubites (1711—1714), and then the Mohocks — most dreaded of all. (Hawkubite is the name of an Indian tribe of savages.)
“From Mohock and from Hawkubite,
Good Lord deliver me,
Who wander through the streets at nigh
They slash our sons with bloody knives,
And on our daughters fall;
And, if they murder not our wives,
We have good luck withal.”
He has crept through the hawse—hole, or He has come in at the hawse—hole. That is, he entered the service in the lowest grade; he rose from the ranks. A naval phrase. The hawse—hole of a ship is that through which the cable of the anchor runs.
in florology, means “Good Hope,” because it shows the winter is over and spring is at hand. The Athenian girls used to crown themselves with hawthorn flowers at weddings, and the marriage—torch was made of hawthorn. The Romans considered it a charm against sorcery, and placed leaves of it on the cradles of new—born infants.
The hawthorn was chosen by Henry VII. for his device, because the crown of Richard III. was discovered in a hawthorn bush at Bosworth.
or Haugh. A royal park in “which no man commons”; rich pasture—land; as Bilhagh (Billa—haugh), Beskwood— or Bestwood—hay, Lindeby—hay, Welley—hay or Wel—hay. These five hays were “special reserves” of game for royalty alone.
A bottle of hay. (See Bottle.) Between hay and grass. Too late for one and too soon for the other. Neither hay nor grass. That hobby—de—hoy state when a youth is neither boy nor man. Make hay while the sun shines.
Strike while the iron is hot.
Take time by the forelock.
One to—day is worth two to—morrows. (Franklin.
(Frank). The laird of Bucklaw, afterwards laird of Girnington. (Sir Walter Scott: Bride of Lammermoor.)
A keeper of the cattle or common herd of a village or parish. The word hay means “hedge,” and this herdsman was so called because he had “ward” of the “hedges” also. (Anglo—Saxon, heg, hay; hege, a hedge.)
The Scape—goat (q.v.).
(See Divining Rod .)
(Anglo—Saxon, haeselhnut, from haesel, a hat or cap, the cap—nut or the nut enclosed in a cap.)
(Latin, caput; Saxon, hedfod; Scotch, hafet; contracted into head.)
Better be the head of an ass than the tail of a horse. Better be foremost amongst commoners than the lowest of the aristocracy; better be the head of the yeomanry than the tail of the gentry. The Italians say, “E meglio esser testa di luccio che coda di sturione. “
He has a head on his shoulders. He is up to snuff (q.v.); he is a clever fellow, with brains in his head. He has quite lost his head. He is in a quandary or quite confused.
I can make neither head nor tail of it. I cannot understand it at all. A gambling phrase. Men with héads beneath the shoulders. (See Caora.)
Men without heads. (See Blemmyes.)
Off one's head. Deranged; delirious; extremely excited. Here “head” means intelligence, understanding, etc. His intelligence or understanding has gone away.
To bundle one out head and heels. “Sans cérémonie, ” altogether. The allusion is to a custom at one time far too frequent in cottages, for a whole family to sleep together in one bed head to heels or pednamene, as it was termed in Cornwall; to bundle the whole lot out of bed was to turn them out head and heels.
To head off. To intercept.
To hit the nail on the head. You have guessed aright; you have done the right thing. The allusion is obvious. The French say, “Vous avez frappé au but “ (You have hit the mark); the Italians have the phrase, “Havete dato in brocca ” (You have hit the pitcher), alluding to a game where a pitcher stood in the place of Aunt Sally (q.v.). The Latin, “Rem acu tetigisti ” (You have touched the thing with a needle), refers to the custom of probing sores.
To keep one's head above water. To avoid bankruptcy. The allusion is to a person immersed in water; so long as his head is above water his life remains, but bad swimmers find it hard to keep their heads above water.
To lose one's head. To be confused and middle—minded. To make head. To get on.
(Get your). You are a dotard. Go and get your head shaved like other lunatics. (See Bath.)
“Thou thinkst that monarchs never can act ill,
Gey thy head shaved, poor fool, or think so still.” Peter Pindar: Ode Upon Ode.
Head and Ears
Over head and ears [in debt, in love, etc.], completely; entirely. The allusion is to a person immersed in water. The French phrase is “Avoir des dettes pardessus la tete. “
Head and Shoulders
A phrase of sundry shades of meaning. Thus “head and shoulders taller” means considerably tall; to turn one out head and shoulders means to drive one out forcibly and without ceremony.
Head of Cattle
Cattle are counted by the head; manufacturing labourers by hands, as “How many hands do you employ?” horses by the nose (See Nose); guests at dinner by the cover, as “Covers for ten,” etc. (See Numbers, Hand.)
In contracting for meals the contractor takes the job at so much “a head” — i.e. for each person.
Head over Heels
(To turn). To place the hands upon the ground and throw the legs upwards so as to describe half a circle.
Heads or Tails
Guess whether the coin tossed up will come down with headside uppermost or not. The side not bearing the head has various devices, sometimes Britannia, sometimes George and the Dragon, sometimes a harp, sometimes the royal arms, sometimes an inscription, etc. These devices are all included in the word tail, meaning opposite to the head. The ancient Romans used to play this game, but said, “Heads or ships.”
“Cum puerl denarios in sublime jactantes, `capita aut navia,' lusu teste vetustatis exclamant.” — Macrobius Saturnalia, i. 7.
Neither head nor tail. Nothing consistent. “I can make neither head nor tail of what you say,” i.e. I cannot bolt the matter to the bran.
Heads I Win, Tails you Lose In tossing up a coin, with such an arrangement, the person who makes the bargain must of necessity win, and the person who accepts it must inevitably lose.
wilful; affecting the head, as “The wine or beer is heady.” (German, heftig, ardent, strong, self—willed.)
Gold given to a king for “healing” the king's evil, which was done by a touch.
Your health. The story is that Vortigern was invited to dine at the house of Hengist, when Rowena, the host's daughter, brought a cup of wine which she presented to their royal guest, saying, “Was hæ'l, hlaford cyning ” (Your health, lord king). (See Wassail.)
William of Malmesbury says the custom took its rise from the death of young King Edward the Martyr, who was traitorously stabbed in the back while drinking a cup of wine presented to him by his mother Elfrida.
Drinking healths. The Romans adopted a curious fashion of drinking the health of their lady—loves, and that was to drink a bumper to each letter of her name. Hudibras satirises this custom, which he calls “spelling names with beer—glasses” (part ii. chap. 1).
“Nævia sex cyathis, septem Justina bibatur,
Quinque Lycas, Lyde quatuor, Ida tribus.”
Martial, i. 72.
Three cups to Amy, four to Kate be given,
To Susan five, six Rachel, Bridget seven.
E. C. B.
Struck all of a heap. To be struck with astonishment. “Etre ahuri. ” The idea is that of confusion, having the wits bundled together in a heap.
To hear as a hog in harvest. In at one ear and out at the other; hear without paying attention. Giles Firmin says, “If you call hogs out of the harvest stubble, they will just lift up their heads to listen, and fall to their shack again.” (Real Christian, 1670.)
(1 syl.) means simply a harrow. Those harrows used in Roman Catholic churches (or frames with spikes) for holding candles are called in France herses. These frames at a later period were covered with a canopy, and lastly were mounted on wheels.
A variety of the word core. (Latin, cord', the heart; Greek, kard'; Sanskrit, herd'; Anglo—Saxon, heorte.)
Heart (in Christian art), the attribute of St. Theresa.
The flaming heart (in Christian art), the symbol of charity. An attribute of St. Augustine, denoting the fervency of his devotion. The heart of the Saviour is frequently so represented.
PHRASES, PROVERBS, ETC.
A bloody heart. Since the time of Good Lord James the Douglases have carried upon their shields a bloody heart with a crown upon it, in memory of the expedition of Lord James to Spain with the heart of King Robert Bruce. King Robert commissioned his friend to carry his heart to the Holy Land, and Lord James had it enclosed in a silver casket, which he wore round his neck. On his way to the Holy Land, he stopped to aid Alphonso of Castile against Osmyn the Moor, and was slain. Sir Simon Lockhard of Lee was commissioned to carry the heart back to Scotland. (Tales of a Grandfather, xi.)
After my own heart. Just what I like; in accordance with my liking or wish: the heart being the supposed seat of the affections.
Be of good heart. Cheer up. In Latin, “Fac, bono animo sis; “ the heart being the seat of moral courage. Out of heart. Despondent; without sanguine hope. In Latin, “Animum despondere. ” In French, “Perdre courage. “
Set your heart at rest. Be quite easy about the matter. In French, “Mettez votre coeur à l' aise. ' The heart is the supposed organ of the sensibilities (including the affections, etc.).
To break one's heart. To waste away or die of disappointment. “Broken—hearted,” hopelessly distressed. In French, “Cela me fend le coeur. ” The heart is the organ of life.
To learn by heart. To learn memoriter; to commit to memory. In French, “Par coeur ” or “Apprendre par coeur. ” (See Learn.)
To set one's heart upon. Earnestly to desire it. “Je l' aime de tout mon coeur; ” the heart being the supposed seat of the affections.
Take heart. Be of good courage. Moral courage at one time was supposed to reside in the heart, physical courage in the stomach, wisdom in the head, affection in the reins or kidneys, melancholy in the bile, spirit in the blood, etc. In French, “prendre courage. “
To take to heart. To feel deeply pained [at something which has occurred]. In Latin, “Percussit mihi animum; ” “iniquo animo ferre. ” In French, “Prendre une affaire à coeur; ” the heart being the supposed seat of the affections.
To wear one's heart upon one's sleeve. To expose one's secret intentions to general notice; the reference being to the custom of tying your lady's favour to your sleeve, and thus exposing the secret of the heart. Iago says, “When my outward action shows my secret heart, I will wear my heart upon my sleeve, as one does a lady's favour, for daws [? dows, pigeons] to peck at.” Dows = fools, or simpletons to laugh at or quiz.
(Othello, i. 1.)
With all my heart. “De tout mon coeur; ” most willing. The heart, as the seat of the affections and sensibilities, is also the seat of the will.
(A). A flirt. Also a particular kind of curl. Called in French Accroche—coeur. At one time loose ringlets worn over the shoulders were called heart breakers. At another time a curl worn over the temples was called an Accorche—coeur, crève coeur.
Very pathetic. “Qui déchire le coeur; ” the heart as the seat of the affections.
Not in love; the affections not given to another.
“I in love? ... I give you my word I am heartwhole,” — Sir W. Scott: Redgauntlet (letter 13).
Heart and Soul
With my whole heart and soul. With all the energy and enthusiasm of which I am capable. In French, “S'y porter de tout son coeur. ” Mark xii. 33 says, “Love [God] with all thy heart [affection], all thy soul [or glow of spiritual life], all thy strength [or physical powers], and all thy understanding [that is, let thy love be also a reasonable service, and not mere enthusiasm].”
Heart in his Boots
His heart fell into his hose or sank into his boots. In Latin, “Cor illi in genua decidit. ” In French, “Avoir la peur au ventre. ” The two last phrases are very expressive: Fear makes the knees shake, and it gives one a stomach—ache; but the English phrase, if it means anything, must mean that it induces the person to run away.
Heart in his Mouth
His heart was in his mouth. That choky feeling in the throat which arises from fear, conscious guilt, shyness, etc.
“The young lover tried to look at his ease, ... but his heart was in his mouth,” — Miss Thackeray; Mrs. Dymond, p. 156.
Heart of Grace
(To take). To pluck up courage; not to be disheartened or down—hearted. This expression is based on the promise, “My grace is sufficient for thee” (2 Cor. xii. 9); by this grace St. Paul says, “When I am weak then am I strong.” Take grace into your heart, rely on God's grace for strength, with grace in your heart your feeble knees will be strengthened. (See Hart Of Grease.)
Heart of Hearts
(In one's). In one's inmost conviction. The heart is often referred to as a second self. Shakespeare speaks of the “neck of the heart” (Merchant of Venice, ii. 2); “the middle of the heart"
(Cymbeline, i. 7). The heart of the heart is to the same effect.
Heart of Midlothian
The old jail, the Tolbooth of Edinburgh, taken down in 1817. Sir Walter Scott has a novel so called.
Heart's Ease The viola tricolor. It has a host of fancy names; as, the “Butterfly flower,” “Kiss me quick,” a “Kiss behind the garden gate,” “Love in idleness,” “Pansy,” “Three faces under one hood,” the “Variegated violet,” “Herba Trinitatis.” The quotation annexed will explain the popular tradition of the flower: —
“Yet marked I where the bolt of Cupid fell:
It fell upon a little western flower,
Before milk—white, now purple with loves wound,
And maidens call it love—in—idleness ...
The juice of it on sleeping eyelids laid
Will make a man or woman madly doat
Upon the next live creature that it sees.”
Shakespeare: Midsummer Night's Dream, ii. 1.
(See Chimney Money .)
One course in a race; activity, action.
“Feigned Zeal, you saw, set out with speedier pace.
But the last heat Plain Dealing won the race.”
A dweller on a heath or common. Christian doctrines would not reach these remote people till long after they had been accepted in towns, and even villages. (Anglo—Saxon, hæthen, hæth. (See Pagan.)
(Anglo—Saxon, heofon, from heofen, elevated, vaulted.)
THE THREE HEAVENS. (According to the Jewish system.) The word heaven in the Bible denotes (1) the air, thus we read of “the fowls of heaven,” “the dew of heaven,” and “the clouds of heaven”; (2) the starry firmament, as, “Let there be lights in the firmament of heaven" (Gen. i. 14); (3) the palace of Jehovah; thus we read that “heaven is My throne” (Isa. lxvi. 1, and Matt. v. 34).
Loosely, the word is used in Scripture sometimes simply to express a great height. “The cities are walled up to heaven” (Deut. i. 28). So the builders on Shinar designed to raise a tower whose top should “reach unto heaven” (Gen. xi. 4).
THE FIVE HEAVENS. (According to the Ptolemaic system.) (1) The planetary heaven; (2) the sphere of the fixed stars; (3) the crystalline, which vibrates; (4) the primum mobilë, which communicates motion to the lower spheres; (5) the empyrean or seat of deity and angels. (See above.)
“Sometimes she deemed that Mars had from above
Left his fifth heaven, the powers of men to prove.”
Hoole: Orlando Furioso, book xiii.
THE SEVEN HEAVENS. (According to the Mahometan system.)
The first heaven, says Mahomet, is of pure silver, and here the stars are hung out like lamps on golden chains. Each star has an angel for warder. In this heaven “the prophet” found Adam and Eve.
The second heaven, says Mahomet, is of polished steel and dazzling splendour. Here “the prophet” found Noah.
The third heaven, says Mahomet, is studded with precious stones too brilliant for the eye of man. Here Azrael, the angel of death, is stationed, and is for ever writing in a large book or blotting words out. The
former are the names of persons born, the latter those of the newly dead. (See below, Heaven of heavens.)
The fourth heaven, he says, is of the finest silver. Here dwells the Angel of Tears, whose height is “500 days' journey,” and he sheds ceaseless tears for the sins of man.
The fifth heaven is of purest gold, and here dwells the Avenging Angel, who presides over elemental fire. Here “the prophet” met Aaron. (See below.
The sixth heaven is composed of Hasala, a sort of carbuncle. Here dwells the Guardian Angel of heaven and earth, half—snow and half—fire. It was here that Mahomet saw Moses, who wept with envy.
The seventh heaven, says the same veritable authority, is formed of divine light beyond the power of tongue to describe. Each inhabitant is bigger than the whole earth, and has 70,000 heads, each head 70,000 mouths, each mouth 70,000 tongues, and each tongue speaks 70,000 languages, all for ever employed in chanting the praises of the Most High. Here he met Abraham. (See below).
To be in the seventh heaven. Supremely happy. The Cabbalists maintained that there are seven heavens, each rising in happiness above the other, the seventh being the abode of God and the highest class of angels. (See above.
THE NINE HEAVENS. The term heaven was used anciently to denote the orb or sphere in which a celestial body was supposed to move, hence the number of heavens varied. According to one system, the first heaven was that of the Moon, the second that of Venus, the third that of Mercury, the fourth that of the Sun, the fifth that of Mars, the sixth that of Jupiter, the seventh that of Saturn, the eighth that of the “fixt” or firmament, and the ninth that of the Crystalline. (See Nine Spheres.)
HEAVEN (in modern phraseology) means: (1) a great but indefinite height, (2) the sky or the vault of the clouds, (3) the special abode of God, (4) the place of supreme felicity, (5) supposed residence of the celestial gods, etc.
The heaven of heavens. A Hebrewism to express the highest of the heavens, the special residence of Jehovah. Similar superlatives are “the Lord of lords,” “the God of gods,” “the Song of songs.” (Compare our Very very much, etc.)
“Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens is the Lord's.” — Deut. x. 14.
Animals admitted into heaven. (See under Paradise.)
(The), means the heavy cavalry, which consists of men of greater build and height than Lancers and Hussars. (See Light Troops.)
(The), in theatrical parlance, means an actor who plays foil to the hero, such as the king in Hamlet, the mere foil to the prince; Iago is another “heavy man's” part as foil to Othello; the “tiger” in the Ticket of Leave Man is another part for the “heavy man.” Such parts preserve a degree of importance, but never rise into passion.
(The). The garrison artillery. The “light—armed artillery” are Royal Horse Artillery.
(2 syl.). Goddess of youth, and cup—bearer to the celestial gods. She had the power of restoring the aged to youth and beauty. (Greek mythology.)
Such as hang on Hebe's cheek,
And love to live in dimple sleek.”
Hebe vases. Small vases like a cotyliscos. So termed because Hebeis represented as bearing one containing nectar for the gods.
(3 syl.). The partisans of the vile demagogue, Jacques Réné Hébert, chief of the Cordeliers, a revolutionary club which boasted of such names as Anacharsis Clootz, Ronsin, Vincent, and Momoro, in the great French Revolution.
in the satire of Absalom and Achitophel, in the first part stands for Holland, but in the second part for Scotland. Hebronite (3 syl.), a native of Holland or Scotland.
(3 syl. in Greek, 2 in Eng.). A triple deity, called Phoebe or the Moon in heaven, Diana on the earth, and Hecate or Proserpine in hell. She is described as having three heads — one of a horse, one of a dog, and one of a lion. Her offerings consisted of dogs, honey, and black lambs. She was sometimes called “Trivia,” because offerings were presented to her at cross—roads. Shakespeare refers to the triple character of this goddess:
“And we fairies that do run
By the triple Hecate's team.”
Midsummer Night's Dream, v. 2.
Hecate, daughter of Perses the Titan, is a very different person to the “Triple Hecate,” who, according to Hesiod, was daughter of Zeus and a benevolent goddess. Hecate, daughter of Perses, was a magician, poisoned her father, raised a temple to Diana in which she immolated strangers, and was mother of Mede'a and Circe She presided over magic and enchantments, taught sorcery and witchcraft. She is represented with a lighted torch and a sword, and is attended by two black dogs.
Shakespeare, in his Macbeth, alludes to both these Hecates. Thus in act ii. 1 he speaks of “pale Hecate,” i.e. the mother of Medea and Circê, goddess of magicians, whom they invoked, and to whom they made offerings.
“Now ... [at night] witchcraft celebrates
Pale Hecate's offerings.”
But in act iii. 2 he speaks of “black Hecate,” meaning night, and says before the night is over and day dawns, there
“Shall be done
A deed of dreadful note;” i.e. the murder of
N.B. Without doubt, sometimes these two Hecates are confounded.
It is said that Pythagoras offered up 100 oxen to the gods when he discovered that the square of the hypothenuse of a right—angled—triangle equals both the squares of the other two sides. This is the 47th of book i. of “Euclid,” called the dulcarnein (q.v. ). But Pythagoras neversacrificed animals, and would not suffer his disciples to do so.
“He sacrificed to the gods millet and honeycomb, but not animals. [Again] He forbade his disciples to sacrifice oxen.” — Iamblichus: Life of Pythagoras, xviii. pp. 108 — 9
Eldest son of Priam, the noblest and most magnanimous of all the chieftains in Homer's Iliad (a Greek epic). After holding out for ten years, he was slain by Achilles, who lashed him to his chariot, and dragged the dead body in triumph thrice round the walls of Troy. The Iliad concludes with the funeral obsequies of Hector and Patroclos.
The Hector of Germany. Joachim II., Elector of Brandenburg (1514—1571). You wear Hector's cloak. You are paid off for trying to deceive another. You are paid in your own coin. When Thomas Percy, Earl of Northumberland, in 1569, was routed, he hid himself in the House of Hector Armstrong, of Harlaw. This villain betrayed him for the reward offered, but never after did anything go well with him; he went down, down, down, till at last he died a beggar in rags on the roadside.
(A). A leader; so called from the son of Priam and generalissimo of the Trojans.
(To). To swagger, or play the bully. It is hard to conceive how the brave, modest, noble—minded patriot came to be made the synonym of a braggart and blusterer like Ajax.
Street bullies and brawlers who delighted in being as rude as possible, especially to women. Robbery was not their object, but simply to get talked about. (See Hawkubites.)
Second wife of Priam, and mother of nineteen children. When Troy was taken by the Greeks she fell to the lot of Ulysses. She was afterwards metamorphosed into a dog, and threw herself into the sea. The place where she perished was afterwards called the Dog's — grave (cynos—sema). (Homer: Iliad, etc.)
On to Hecuba. To the point or main incident. The story of Hecuba has furnished a host of Greek tragedies.
Hedge (1 syl.). To hedge, in betting, is to defend oneself from loss by cross—bets. As a hedge is a defence, so cross—betting is hedging. (E. Huni: The Town, ix.)
“He [Godolpbin] began to think ... that he had betted too deep ... and that it was time to hedge” — Macaulay: England, vol. iv. chap. xvii. p 15.
(London) includes that whole line of streets (Dorset, Whitcomb, Prince's, and Wardour) stretching from Pall Mall East to Oxford Street.
A poor or vagabond parson. The use of hedge for vagabond, or very inferior, is common: as hedge—mustard, hedge—writer (a Grubb Street author), hedge—marriage (a clandestine one), etc. Shakespeare uses the phrase, “hedge—born swain” as the very opposite of “gentle blood.” (1 Henry VI., iv. 1.)
(A). A school kept in the open air, near a hedge. At one time common in Ireland.
“These irregular or `hedge schools' are tolerated only in villages where no regular school exists within a convenient distance.” — Barnard: Journal of Education, December, 1862, p. 574.
The doctrine of Aristippus, that pleasure or happiness is the chief good and chief end of man (Greek, hedone, pleasure).
Achilles' heel. (See under Achilles.) I showed him a fair pair of heels. I ran away and outran them.
“Two of them saw me when I went out of doors, and chased me, but I showed them a fair pair of heels.” — Sir W. Scott: Peveril of the Peak, chap. xxiv.
Out at heels. In a sad plight, in decayed circumstances, like a beggar whose stockings are worn out at the heels.
“A good man's fortune may grow out at heels.” Shakespeare: King Lear, ii. 2.
To show a light pair of heels. To abscond. To take to one's heels. To run off. “In pedes nos conjicere. “
Bumpers all round, and no heel—taps — i.e. the bumpers are to be drained to the bottom of the glass. Also, one of the thicknesses of the heel of a shoe.
In Heenan style. “By apostolic blows and knocks.” Heenan, the Benicia boy of North America, disputed for the champion's belt against Sayers, the British champion. His build and muscle were the admiration of the ring.
(Uriah). An abject toady, malignant as he is base; always boasting of his 'umble birth, 'umble position, 'umble abode, and 'umble calling. (Dickens: David Copperfield.)
(g hard). The hegemony of nations. The leadership. (Greek, hegemonia, from ago, to lead.)
The epoch of the flight of Mahomet from Mecca, when he was expelled by the magistrates, July 16th, 622. Mahometans date from this event. (Arabic, hejira, departure.)
(2 syl.). In Scandinavian mythology, son of the nine virgins; all sisters. He is called the god with the golden tooth or with golden teeth. Heimdall was not an Asa (q.v.), but a Van (q.v.), who lived in the celestial fort Himinsbiorg under the farther extremity of the bridge Bifrost (q.v.), and kept the keys of heaven. He is the watchman or sentinel of Asgard (q.v.), sleeps less than a bird, sees even in sleep, can hear the grass grow, and even the wool on a lamb's back. Heimdall, at the end of the world, will wake the gods with his trumpet, when the sons of Muspell will go against them, with Loki, the wolf Fenrir, and the great serpent Jormungand.
The sound of this horn went through all the world.
The learned humbugs in the court of King Dinube of Hisisburg. (Grimm's Goblins.)
(The). A prose legend found in the Snorra Edda.
The person who will succeed as heir if he survives. At the death of his predecessor the heir—apparent becomes heir—at—law.
One who will be heir if no one is born having a prior claim. Thus the Princess Royal was heir—presumptive till the Prince of Wales was born; and if the Prince of Wales had been king before any family had been born to him, his brother, Prince Alfred, would have been heir—presumptive.
or Hela (in Scandinavian mythology), queen of the dead, is goddess of the ninth earth or nether world. She dwelt beneath the roots of the sacred ash (yggdrasil), and was the daughter of Loki. The All—father sent her into Helheim, where she was given dominion over nine worlds, and to one or other of these nine worlds she sends all who die of sickness or old age. Her dwelling is Elvidnir (dark clouds), her dish Hungr (hunger), her knife Sullt (starvation), her servants Ganglati (tardy—feet), her bed Kör (sickness), and her bed—curtains Blikiandabol (splendid misery). Half her body was blue.
“Down the yawning steep he rode
That led to Hela's drear abode.”
Gray: Descent of Odin.
A mantle of invisibility belonging to the dwarf—king Laurin. (German, hehlen, to conceal.) (The Heldenbuch.)
Heldenbuch (Book of Heroes). A German compilation of all the romances pertaining to Diderick and his champions, by Wolfram von Eschenbach.
The type of female beauty, more especially in those who have reached womanhood. Daughter of Zeus and Leda, and wife of Menelaos, King of Sparta.
“She moves a goddess and she looks a queen.”
Pope: Homer's Iliad, iii.
The Helen of Spain. Cava or Florinda, daughter of Count Julian. (See Cava.) St. Helen's fire (feu d'Héèe); also called Feu St. Helme (St. Helme's or St. Elmo's fire); and by the Italians “the fires of St. Peter and St. Nicholas.” Meteoric fires seen occasionally on the masts of ships, etc. If the flame is single, foul weather is said to be at hand; but if two or more flames appear, the weather will improve. (See Castor.)
Helen of One's Troy
(The). The ambition of one's life; the subject for which we would live and die. The allusion, of course, is to that Helen who eloped with Paris, and thus brought about the siege and destruction of Troy.
“For which men all the life they here enjoy
Still fight, as for the Helens of their Troy.”
Lord Brooke: Treatie of Humane Learning.
The type of a lovely woman, patient and hopeful, strong in feeling, and sustained through trials by her enduring and heroic faith. (Shakespeare: All's Well that Ends Well.)
(St.). Mother of Constantine the Great. She is represented in royal robes, wearing an imperial crown, because she was empress. Sometimes she carries in her hand a model of the Holy Sepulchre, an edifice raised by her in the East; sometimes she bears a large cross, typical of her alleged discovery of that upon which the Saviour was crucified; sometimes she also bears the three nails by which He was affixed to the cross.
The prophet, the only son of Priam that survived the fall of Troy. He fell to the share of Pyrrhos when the captives were awarded; and because he saved the life of the young Grecian was allowed to marry Androm'—ache, his brother Hector's widow. (Virgil: Æneid.)
The Muses' Mount. It is part of the Parnassos, a mountain range in Greece.
Helicon's harmonious stream is the stream which flowed from Helicon to the fountains of the Muses, called Aganippe and Hippocrene (3 syl.).
(Holy—month). The name given by the Anglo—Saxons to December, in allusion to Christmas Day.
the City of the Sun, a Greek form of (1) Baalbek, in Syria; and (2) of On, in ancient Egypt, noted for its temple of Actis, called Beth Shemesh or Temple of the Sun, in Jer. xliii. 13.
The Greek Sun—god, who rode to his palace in Colchis every night in a golden boat furnished with wings.
An instrument by which the rays of the sun can be flashed to great distances. Used in signalling.
Heliotrope (4 syl.). Apollo loved Clytie, but forsook her for her sister Leucothoe. On discovering this, Clytie pined away; and Apollo changed her at death to a flower, which, always turning towards the sun, is called heliotrope. (Greek, “turn—to—sun.”)
According to the poets, heliotrope renders the bearer invisible. Boccaccio calls it a stone, but Solinus says it is the herb. “Ut herba ejusdem nominis mixta et præcantationibus legitimis consccrata, eum, a quocunque gestabitur, subtrahat visibus obviorum.” (Georgic, xi.)
“No hope had they of crevice where to hide,
Or heliotrope to charm them out of view.”
Dante: Inferno, xxiv.
“The other stone is heliotrope, which renders those who have it invisible.” — Boccaccio: The Decameron, Novel iii., Eighth day.
According to Mohammedan faith, there are seven hells —
(1) Jabannam, for wicked Mohammedans, all of whom will be sooner or later taken to paradise:
(2) The Flamer (Lathà) for Christians;
(3) The Smasber (Hutamah, for Jews;
(4) The Blazer Sair for Sabians;
(5) The Scorcher (Sakar, for Magians;
(6) The Burner (Johim, for idolaters; and
(7) The Abyss (Hawiyah, for hypocrites.
or Arka of the Jewish Cabalists, divided into seven lodges, one under another (Joseph ben Abraham Gikatilla) —
All these presidents are under Duma, the Angel of Silence who keeps the three keys of the three gates of hell.
In the Buddhist system there are 136 places of punishment after death, where the dead are sent according to their degree of demerit. (See Euphemisms.)
This word occurs eighteen times in the New Testament. In nine instances the Greek word is Hades; in eight instances it is Gehenna; and in one it is Tartarus.
Hades: Matt. xi. 23, xvi. 18; Luke xvi. 23; Acts ii. 31; 1 Cor. xv. 55; Rev. i. 18, vi. 8, xx. 13, 14. (See Hades.)
Gehenna: Matt. v. 22, 29, x. 28, xiii. 15, xviii. 9, xxiii. 15, 33; James iii. 6. (See Gehenna.) Tartarus: 2 Peter ii. 4. (See Tartaros.)
Descended into hell (Creed) means the place of the dead. (Anglo—Saxon, helan, to cover or conceal, like the Greek “Hades,” the abode of the dead, from the verb a—cido, not to see. In both cases it means “the unseen world” or “the world concealed from sight.” The god of this nether world was called “Hades” by the Greeks, and “Hel” or “Hela” by the Scandinavians. In some counties of England to cover in with a roof is “to hell the building,” and thatchers or tilers are termed “helliers.”
Lead apes in hell. (See Ape.)
(Rivers of). Classic authors tell us that the Inferno is encompassed by five rivers: Acheron, Cocytus, Styx, Phlegethon, and Lethe. Acheron from the Greek achos—reo, grief—flowing; Cocytus, from the Greek kokuo, to weep, supposed to be a flood of tears; Styx, from the Greek stugeo, to loathe; Phlegethon, from the Greek phleo to burn; and Lethê, from the Greek letle, oblivion.
Five hateful rivers round Inferno run, Grief comes the first, and then the Flood of tears, Next loathsome Styx, then liquid Flame appears, Lethe comes last, or blank oblivion. E. C. B.
Hell Broth A magical mixture prepared for evil purposes. The witches in Macbeth made it. (See act iv. 1.)
A dangerous passage between Great Barn Island and Long Island, North America. The Dutch settlers of New York called it Hoellgat (whirling—gut) corrupted into Hell—gate. Flood Rock, its most dangerous reef, has been blown up by U.S. engineers.
according to Milton, are nine—fold — three of brass, three of iron, and three of adamant; the keepers are Sin and Death. This allegory is one of the most celebrated passages of Paradise Lost. (See book ii. 643—676.)
Cavities three miles long, at Oxen—le—Field, Durham. A, B, C communicate with each other, diameter, about 38 yards. The diameter of D, a separate cave, is about 28 yards.
A is 19 feet 6 inches in depth.
B is 14 feet in depth.
C is 17 feet in depth.
D is 5 feet 6 inches in depth. (See Notes and Queries, August 21, 1875.)
In Icelandic mythology, indispensable for the journey to Valhalla as the obolus for crossing the Styx.
Hell or Connaught
(To). This phrase, usually attributed to Cromwell, and common to the whole of Ireland, rose thus: When the settlers designed for Ireland asked the officers of James I. where they were to go, they were answered “to Hell or Connaught,” go where you like or where you may, but don't bother me about the matter.
Umpires of the public games in Greece. They might chastise with a stick anyone who created a disturbance. Lichas, a Spartan nobleman, was so punished by them.
(3 syl.). “This word had in Palestine three several meanings; Sometimes it designated the pagans; sometimes the Jews, speaking Greek, and dwelling among the pagans; and sometimes proselytes of the gate, that is, men of pagan origin converted to Judaism, but not circumcised" (John vii. 35, xii.20; Acts xiv. 1, xvii. 4, xviii. 4, xxi. 28). (Renan: Life of Jesus, xiv.)
N.B. The present Greeks call themselves “Hellenes,” and the king is termed “King of the Hellenes.” The ancient Greeks called their country “Hellas;” it was the Romans who misnamed it “Græcia.”
“The first and truest Hellas, the mother—land of all Hellenes, was the land which we call Greece, with the islands round about it. There alone the whole land was Greek, and none but Hellenes lived in it.” — Freeman: General Sketch, chap. ii. p. 21.
The common dialect of the Greek writers after the age of Alexander. It was based on the Attic.
Hellenistic The dialect of the Greek language used by the Jews. It was full of Oriental idioms and metaphors.
Those Jews who used the Greek or Hellenic language. (All these four words are derived from Hellas, in Thessaly, the cradle of the race.)
(3 syl.), now called the Dardanelles, means the “sea of Helle,” and was so called because Helle, the sister of Phryxos, was drowned there. She was fleeing with her brother through the air to Colchis on the golden ram to escape from Ino, her mother—in—law, who most cruelly oppressed her, but turning giddy, she fell into the sea.
in heraldry, resting on the chief of the shield, and bearing the crest, indicates rank. Gold, with six bars, or with the visor raised (in full face) for royalty! Steel, with gold bars, varying in number (in profile) for a nobleman; Steel, without bars, and with visor open (in profile) for a knight or baronet; Steel, with visor closed (in profile), for a squire or gentleman.
“The pointed helmet in the bas—reliefs from the earliest palace of Nimroud appears to have been the most ancient ... Several were discovered in the ruins. They were iron, and the rings which ornamented the lower part ... were inlaid with copper.” — Layard: Nineveh and its Remains, vol. ii. part ii. chap. iv. p. 262.
Those of Saragossa were most in repute in the days of chivalry.
Close helmet. The complete head—piece, having in front two movable parts, which could be lifted up or let down at pleasure.
Visor. One of the movable parts; it was to look through. Bever, or drinking—piece. One of the movable parts, which was lifted up when the wearer ate or drank. It comes from the Italian verb bevere (to drink)
Morion. A low iron cap, worn only by infantry.
Mahomet's helmet. Mahomet wore a double helmet; the exterior one was called al mawashah (the wreathed garland).
The helmet of Perscus (2 syl.) rendered the wearer invisible. This was the “helmet of Hades,” which, with the winged sandals and magic wallet, he took from certain nymphs who held them in possession; but after he had slain Medusa he restored them again, and presented the Gorgon's head to Athena [Minerva], who placed it in the middle of her aegis.
in the satire of Absalom and Achitophel, by Dryden and Tate, is meant for the Earl of Feversham.
A slave in ancient Sparta. Hence, a slave or serf.
(American.) A hired servant.
Higgledy—piggledy; in hurry and confusion. The Latin hilariter—celeriter comes tölerably near the meaning of post—haste, as Shakespeare uses the expression (2 Henry IV., v. 3): —
“Sir John, I am thy Pistol and thy friend,
And helter—skelter have I rode to thee,
And tidings do I bring.”
To throw the helve after the hatchet. To be reckless, to throw away what remains because your losses have been so great. The allusion is to the fable of the wood—cutter who lost the head of his axe in a river and threw the handle in after it.
Switzerland. So called from the Helvetii, a powerful Celtic people who dwelt thereabouts.
“See from the ashes of Helvetia's pile
The whitened skull of old Servetus smile.”
To have some hemp in your pocket. To have luck on your side in the most adverse circumstances. The phrase is French (Avoir de la corde—de—pendu duns sa poche), referring to the popular notion that hemp brings good luck.
(1 syl.). When hempe is spun England is done. Lord Bacon says he heard the prophecy when he was a child, and he interpreted it thus: Hempe is composed of the initial letters of H enry, E dward, M ary, P hilip, and E lizabeth. At the close of the last reign “England was done,” for the sovereign no longer styled himself
“King of England,” but “King of Great Britain and Ireland.” (See Notarica.)
A hangman's rope.
“Ye shall have a hempen caudle then, and, the help of a hatchet.” — Shakespeare: 2 Hen. VI.,
(A). The hangman's rope. In French: “La cravate de chanvre. “
Death on the gallows, the rope being made of hemp.
The widow of a man who has been hanged. (See above.)
“Of a hempen widow the kid forlorn.”
Ainsworth: Jack Sheppard.
or Hæmus. A chain of mountains in Thrace. According to mythology, Hæmos, son of Boreas, was changed into a mountain for aspiring to divine honours.
A man who submits to be snubbed by his wife.
Hen and Chickens
(in Christian art), emblematical of God's providence. (See St. Matthew xxiii. 37.)
A whistling maid and crowing hen is neither fit for God nor men. A whistling maid means a witch, who whistles like the Lapland witches to call up the winds; they were supposed to be in league with the devil. The crowing of a hen was supposed to forbode a death. The usual interpretation is that masculine qualities in females are undesirable.
Hen with one Chick
As fussy as a hen with one chick. Over—anxious about small matters; over—particular and fussy. A hen with one chick is for ever clucking it, and never leaves it in independence a single moment.
The Anglo—Saxon hinc is a servant or page; or perhaps henges—man, a horse—man; henges or hengst, a horse.
“I do but beg a little changeling boy
To be my benchman.”
Shakespeare: Midsummer Night's Dream. ii. 1.
and Horsa. German, hengst (a stallion), and Horsa is connected with our Anglo—Saxon word hors (horse). If the names of two brothers, probably they were given them from the devices borne on their arms. According to tradition, they landed in Pegwell Bay, Kent.
Henna The Persian ladies tinge the tips of their fingers with henna to make them a reddish—yellow.
“The leaf of the henna—plant resembles that of the myrtle. The blossom has a powerful fragrance: it grows like a feather about 18 inches long, forming a cluster of small yellow flowers.” — Baker: Nile Tribes, Abyssinia, chap. i. p. 3.
(Countess). One day a beggar woman asked alms of the Countess, who twitted the beggar for carrying twins. The woman, furious with passion, cursed the Countess with the assurance that she should become the mother of 365 children. The tradition is that the Countess had this number all at one parturition. All the boys were named John and all the girls Elizabeth. The story says they all died on the day of their birth, and were buried at Hague.
or Henricians. A religious sect; so called from Henricus, its founder, an Italian monk, who, in the twelfth century, undertook to reform the vices of the clergy. He rejected infant baptism, festivals, and ceremonies. Henricus was imprisoned by Pope Eugenius III. in 1148.
(3 syl.), in the French language, means “a perfect woman.” The character is from Molière's Femmes Savantes.
(Poor), a touching tale in poetry by Hartmann von der Aur [Our ], one of the minnesingers (12th century). Henry, prince of Hoheneck, in Bavaria, being struck with leprosy, was told that he never would be healed till a spotless maiden volunteered to die on his behalf. Prince Henry, never expecting to meet with such a victim, sold most of his possessions, and went to live in the cottage of a small tenant farmer. Here Elsie, the farmer's daughter, waited on him; and, hearing the condition of his cure, offered herself, and went to Salerno to complete the sacrifice. Prince Henry accompanied her, was cured, and married Elsie, who thus became Lady Alicia, wife of Prince Henry of Hoheneck.
Henry Grace de Dieu
The largest ship built by Henry VIII. It carried 72 guns, 700 men, and was 1,000 tons burthen. (See Great Harry.)
The Greek Vulcan.
(Greek for seven governments). The Saxon Heptarchy is the division of England into seven parts, each of which had a separate ruler: as Kent, Sussex, Wessex, Essex, East Anglia, Mercia, and Northumbria.
The Greek Juno, the wife of Zeus. (The word means “chosen one,” harreo.)
(4 syl.). The descendants of Heracles (Latin, Hercules).
(Anglo—Saxon here (2 syl.), an army, and ealdor, a governor or official. The coat of arms represents the knight himself from whom the bearer is descended. The shield represents his body, and the helmet his head.
The flourish is his mantle.
The motto is the ground or moral pretension on which he stands. The supporters are the pages, designated by the emblems of bears, lions, and so on.
consists of three kings—of—arms, six heralds, and four pursuivants. The head of the college is called the Earl Marshal of England.
The three kings—of—arms are Garter (blue), Clarencieux and Norroy (purple The six herala's are vled Somerset Richmond, Lancestor, Windsor, Chester, and York. The four pursuivants are Rouge Dragon, Blue Mantle, Portcullis, and Rouge Croix.
GARTER KING—OF—ARMS is so called from his special duty to attend at the solemnities of election, investiture, and installation of Knights of the Garter.
CLARENCIEUX KING—OF—ARMS. So called from the Duke of Clarenco, brother of Edward IV. His duty is to marshal and dispose the funerals of knights on the south side of the Trent.
NORROY KING—OF—ARMS has similar jurisdiction to Clarencieux, only on the north side of the Trent.
“There is a supplementary herald, called `Bath King of Arms,' who has no seat in the college, His duty is to attend at the election of a knight of the Bath.”
In Scotland the heraldic college consists of LYON KING—OF—ARMS, six heralds, and five pursuivants. In Ireland it consists of ULSTER KING—OF—ARMS, two heralds, and two pursuivants.
As a general rule of heraldry, a metal object may not be laid upon a metal field, nor a coloured one upon colour. This originated in the utilitarian purpose of heraldry to distinguish warriors in the field and lists, where arms of contrasting tinctures would be more clearly visible than (say) gold charges on silver, or blue on green.
To this rule there are exceptions. Where a field is varied of a metal and a colour, a charge of either metal or colour may be laid on it, provided it rests on the field as a whole, and not only on one of the tinctures of the field.? arms of Hessen - a stripy red-and-white lion on blue
He does not mention the barry (stripy) lion of Hessen, which is the reverse of this ? a metal-and-colour combination on a field of a different colour.
The rule is likewise relaxed in the case of bordures and chiefs, and of a charge surmounting both the field and another charge. The rule does not apply to furs, or to charges blazoned as proper.?
Many herbs are used for curative purposes simply because of their form or marks: thus, wood—sorrel, being shaped like a heart, is used as a cordial; liver—wort for the liver; the celandine, which has yellow juice, for the jaundice; herb—dragon, which is speckled like a dragon, to counteract the poison of serpents, etc.
Herb of Grace
Rue is so called because of its use in exorcism, and hence the Roman Catholics sprinkle holy water with a bunch of rue. It was for centuries supposed to prevent contagion. Rue is the German raute; Greek, rute; Latin, ruta, meaning the “preserver,” being a preservative of health (Greek, ruo, to preserve). Ophelia calls it the “Herb of Grace o' Sundays.”
The botanical name is Vio la tricolor. The word tricolor explains why it is called the Herb Trinity. It also explains the pet name of “Three—faces—under—a—hood;” but the very markings of the pansy resemble the name. (See Heart's Ease.)
The “divine weed,” vervain, said by the old Romans to cure the bites of all rabid animals to arrest the progress of venom, to cure the plague, to avert sorcery and witchcraft, to reconcile enemies, etc. So highly esteemed was it that feasts called Verbenalia were annually held in its honour. Heralds wore a wreath of vervain when they declared war; and the Druids held vervain in similar veneration.
“Lift your boughs of vervain blue,
Dipt in cold September dew;
And dash the moisture, chaste and clear,
O'er the ground, and through the air.
Now the place is purged and pure.”
(3 syl.), in astronomy, a large northern constellation.
“Those stars in the neighbourhood of Hercules are mostly found to be approaching the earth, and those which lie in the opposite direction to be receding from it.” — Newconib: Popular Astro— nomy, part iv. chap. i. p. 458.
(3 syl.). A Grecian hero, possessed of the utmost amount of physical strength and vigour that the human frame is capable of. He is represented as brawny, muscular, shortnecked, and of huge proportions. The Pythian told him if he would serve Eurystheus for twelve years he should become immortal; accordingly he bound himself to the Argive king, who imposed upon him twelve tasks of great difficulty and danger:
(1) To slay the Nemean lion.
(2) To kill the Lernean hydra.
(3) To catch and retain the Arcadian stag.
(4) To destroy the Erymanthian boar.
(5) To cleanse the stables of King Augeas.
(6) To destroy the cannibal birds of the Lake Stymphalis.
(7) To take captive the Cretan bull. (8) To catch the horses of the Thracian Diomedes. (9) To get possession of the girdle of Hippolyte, Queen of the Amazons. (10) To take captive the oxen of the monster Geryon.
(11) To get possession of the apples of the Hesperides.
(12) To bring up from the infernal regions the three—headed dog Cerberos. The Neinean lion first he killed, then Lernes hydra slew;
Th' Arcadian stag and monster boar before Eurystheus drew;
Cleansed Augeas' staffs, and made the birds from Lake stymphalis flee; The Cretan bull, and Thracian neares, first seized and then set tree;
Took prize the Amazonian belt, brought Geryon's kine from Gades; Fetched apples from the Hesperides and Cerberos from Hades. E.C.B.
The Attic Hercules. Theseus (2 syl.), who went about like Hercule, his great contemporary, destroying robbers and achieving wondrous exploits.
The Egyptian Hercules. Sesostris. (Flourished B. C. 1500.)
The Farnese Hercules. A celebrated work of art, copied by Glykon from an original by Lysippos. It exhibits the hero, exhausted by toil, leaning upon his club; his left hand rests upon his back, and grasps one of the apples of the Hesperides. A copy of this famous statue stands in the gardens of the Tuileries, Paris; but Glykon's statue is in the Farnese Palace at Rome. A beautiful description of this statue is given by Thomson
The Jewish Hercules. Samson. (Died B. C. 1113.)
Immortality the reward of toil in preference to pleasure. Xenophon tells us when Hercules was a youth he was accosted by two women — Virtue and Pleasure — and asked to choose between them. Pleasure promised him all carnal delights, but Virtue promised immortality. Hercules gave his hand to the latter, and, after a life of toil, was received amongst the gods.
A stick of unusual size and formidable appearance.
Arion, given him by Adrastos. It had the power of speech, and its feet on the right side were those of a man. (See Horse.)
or The labour of an Hercules. Very great toil. Hercules was appointed by Eurystheus (3 syl.) to perform twelve labours requiring enormous strength or dexterity.
“It was more than the labour of an Hercules could effect to make any tolerable way through your town.” — Cumberland: The West Indian.
Calpé and Abyla, one at Gibraltar and one at Centa, torn asunder by Hercules that the waters of the Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea might communicate with each other. Macrobius ascribes these pillars to Sesostris (the Egyptian Hercules), and Lucan follows the same tradition.
I will follow you even to the pillars of Hercules. To the end of the world. The ancients supposed that these rocks marked the utmost limits of the habitable globe. (See above, Hercules' Pillars.)
Commodus, the Roman Emperor, gave himself this title. He was a gigantic idiot, of whom it is said that he killed 100 lions in the amphitheatre, and gave none of them more than one blow. He also overthrew 1,000 gladiators. (161, 180—192.)
Hercules of Music
(The). Christopher Glück (1714—1787).
A snaky complication on the rod or caduceus of Mercury, adopted by the Grecian brides as the fastening of their woollen girdles, which only the bridegroom was allowed to untie when the bride retired for the night. As he did so he invoked Juno to render his marriage as fecund as that of Hercules, whose numerous wives all had families, amongst them being the fifty daughters of Thestius, each of whom conceived in one night. (See Knot.)
(3 syl.). (Anglo—Saxon, herë—ford, army ford.)
A good turn rendered for a good turn received. Latin proverbs, “Fricantem refrica; “ “Manus manum lavat.” Fuller says the people of Herefordshire “drink back to him who drinks to them.”
means “one who chooses,” and heresy means simply “a choice.” A heretic is one who chooses his own creed, and does not adopt the creed authorised by the national church. (Greek, hairesis, choice.)
HERETICS OF THE FIRST CENTURY were the Simonians (so called from Simon Magus), Cerinthians (Cerinthus), Ebionites (Ebion), and Nicolaitans (Nicholas, deacon of Antioch).
SECOND CENTURY: The Basilidians (Basilides), Carpocratians (Carpocrates), Valentinians (Valentinus), Gnostics (Knowing Ones), Nazarenes, Millenarians, Cainites (Cain), Sethians (Seth), Quartodecimans (who kept Easter on the fourteenth day of the first month), Cerdonians (Cerdon), Marcionites (Marcion), Montanists (Montanus), Tatianists (Tatian), Alogians (who denied the “Word"), Artotyrites (q.v.), and Angelies (who worshipped angels).
Tatianists belong to the third or fourth century. The Tatian of the second century was a Platonic philosopher who wrote Discourses in good Greek; Tatian the heretic lived in the third or fourth century, and wrote very bad Greek. The two men were widely different in every respect, and the authority of the heretic for `four gospels” is of no worth.
THIRD CENTURY: The Patri—passians, Arabaci, Aquarians, Novatians, Origenists (followers of Origen), Melchisedechians (who believed Melchisedec was the Messiah), Sabellians (from Sabellius), and Manicheans (followers of Mani).
FOURTH CENTURY: The A'rians (from Arius), Colluthians (Colluthus), Macedonians, Agne'tæ, Apollinarians (Apollinaris), Timotheans (Timothy, the apostle), Collyridians (who offered cakes to the Virgin Mary), Seleucians (Seleucius), Priscillians (Priscillian), Anthropomorphites (who ascribed to God a human form), Jovinianists (Jovinian), Messalians, and Bonosians (Bonosus).
FIFTH CENTURY: The Pelagians (Pelagius), Nestorians (Nestorius), Eutychians (Eutychus), Theo—paschites (who said all the three persons of the Trinity suffered on the cross).
SIXTH CENTURY: The Predestinarians, Incorruptibilists (who maintained that the body of Christ was incorruptible), the new Agnoe'tæ (who maintained that Christ did not know when the day of judgment would take place), and the Monothelites (who maintained that Christ had but one will).
Heriot A right of the lord of a manor to the best jewel, beast, or chattel of a deceased copyhold tenant. The word is compounded of the Saxon here (army), geatu (grant), because originally it was military furniture, such as armour, arms, and horses paid to the lord of the fee. (Canute, c. 69.)
Busts of the god Hermes affixed to a quadrangular stone pillar, diminishing towards the base, and between five and six feet in height. They were set up to mark the boundaries of lands, at the junction of roads, at the corners of streets, and so on. The Romans used them also for garden decorations. In later times the block was more or less chiselled into legs and arms.
(4 syl.). A human body having both sexes: a vehicle combining the structure of a wagon and cart; a flower containing both the male and female organs of reproduction. The word is derived from the fable of Hermaphroditus, son of Hermes and Aphrodite. The nymph Salmacis became enamoured of him, and prayed that she might be so closely united that, “the twain might become one flesh.” Her prayer being heard, the nymph and boy became one body. (Ovid: Metamorphoses, iv. 347.)
The Romans believed that there were human beings combining in one body both sexes. The Jewish Talmud contains several references to them. An old French law allowed them great latitude. The English law recognises them. The ancient Athenians commanded that they should be put to death. The Hindûs and Chinese enact that every hermaphrodite should choose one sex and keep to it. According to fable, all persons who bathed in the fountain Salmacis, in Caria, became hermaphrodites.
Some think by comparing Gen. i.27 with Gen. ii. 20—24 that Adam at first combined in himself both sexes.
or Hermyngyld. The wife of the constable of Northumberland, who was converted to Christianity by Cunstance, by whose bidding she restored sight to a blind Briton. (Chaucer: Man of Lawes Tale.)
or Ermensul. A Saxon deity, worshipped in Westphalia. Charlemagne broke the idol, and converted its temple into a Christian church. The statue stood on a column, holding a standard in one hand, and a balance in the other. On its breast was the figure of a bear, and on its shield a lion. Probably it was a war—god.
(2 syl.). The Greek Mercury; either the god or the metal.
“So when we see the liquid metal fall
Which chemists by the name of Hermes call.” Hoole: Ariosto, book viii.
Milton (Paradise Lost, iii. 603) calls quicksilver “Volatil Hermes.”
The art or science of alchemy; so called from the Chaldean philosopher, Hermes Trismegistus, its hypothetical founder.
Egyptian books written under the dictation of Thoth (the Egyptian Hermes), the scribe of the gods. Iamblichus gives their number as 20,000, but Manetho raises it to 36,525. These books state that the world was made out of fluid; that the soul is the union of light and life; that nothing is destructible; that the soul transmigrates; and that suffering is the result of motion.
A system which acknowledges only three chemical principles — viz. salt, sulphur, and mercury — from which it explains every phenomenon of nature. (See Hermes.)
The sympathetic powder, supposed to possess a healing influence from a distance. The mediæval philosophers were very fond of calling books, drugs, etc., connected with alchemy and astrology by
the term hermetic, out of compliment to Hermes Trismegistus. (Sir Kenelm Digby: Discourse Concerning the Cure of Wounds by Sympathy.)
“For by his side a pouch he wore
Replete with strange hermetic powder,
That wounds nine miles point—blank would solder.” Butler: Hudibras, i. 2.
Closed securely. Thus we say, “My lips are hermetically sealed,” meaning so as not to utter a word of what has been imparted. The French say close—fitting doors and windows “shut hermetically.” When chemists want to preserve anything from the air, they heat the neck of the vessel till it is soft, and then twist it till the aperture is closed up. This is called sealing the vessel hermetically, or like a chemist. (From Hermës, called Trismegistus, or thrice—great, the supposed inventor of chemistry.)
Daughter of Egeus, who betrothed her to Demetrius; but she refused to marry him, as she was in love with Lysander. (Shakespeare: Mid—summer Night's Dream.)
(4 syl.). Wife of Leontes, King of Silicia. Being suspected of infidelity, she was thrown into jail, swooned, and was reported to be dead. She was kept concealed till her infant Perdita was of marriageable age, when Leontes discovered his mistake, and was reconciled to his wife. (Shakespeare: Winter's Tale.)
(The English). Roger Crab. He subsisted at the expense of three farthings a week, or 3s. 3d. per annum. His food consisted of bran, herbs, roots, dock—leaves, mallows, and grass. Crab died in 1680.
Peter the Hermit. Preacher of the first crusade. (1050—1115.)
(2 syl.). Tristrem V Hermite or Sir Tristan V Ermite. Provostmarshal of Louis XI. He was the main instrument in carrying into effect the nefarious schemes of his wily master, who used to call him his gossip. (1405—1493.) Sir Walter Scott introduces him in Anne of Gierstein, and again in Quentin Durward.
or Hermod (2 syl.). The deity, who, with Bragi, receives and welcomes to Valhalla all heroes who fall in battle. (Scandinavian mythology.)
Daughter of Leonato, governor of Messina. Her attachment to Beatrice is very beautiful, and she serves as a foil to show off the more brilliant qualities of her cousin. (Shakespeare Much Ado about Nothing.)
Hero and Leander
The tale is that Hero, a priestess of Venus, fell in love with Leander, who swam across the Hellespont every night to visit her. One night he was drowned, and heart—broken Hero drowned herself in the same sea.
Children of whom legend relates, that being deserted by their parents, they were suckled by wild beasts, brought up by herdsmen, and became national heroes.
Heroes scratched off Church—doors
Militia officers were so called by Sheridan. The Militia Act enjoined that a list of all persons between eighteen and forty—five years of age must be affixed to the church door of the parish in which they reside three days before the day of appeal, Sunday being one. Commission officers who had served four years in the militia being exempt, their names “were scratched off.”
That age of a nation which comes between the purely mythical period and the historic. This is the age when the sons of the gods take unto themselves the daughters of men, and the offspring partake of the twofold character.
Those which either kill or cure.
in sculpture denotes a stature superior to ordinary life, but not colossal.
That verse in which epic poetry is generally written. In Greek and Latin it is hexameter verse, in English it is ten—syllable iambic verse, either in rhymes or not; in Italian it is the ottava rima. So called because it is employed to celebrate heroic exploits.
A child—killer; from Herod the Great, who ordered the massacre of the babes in Bethlehem. (Matt. ii.
To out—herod Herod. To out—do in wickedness, violence, or rant, the worst of tyrants. Herod, who destroyed the babes of Bethlehem, was made (in the ancient mysteries) a ranting, roaring tyrant; the extravagance of his rant being the measure of his bloody—mindedness. (See Pilate.)
“Oh, it offends me to the soul to hear a robustious, periwig—pated fellow tear a passion to latters, to very rags, to split the ears of the groundings ... it out—herods Herod.” — Shakespeare: Hamlet, iii. 2.
(Acts xii. 23). The following died of a similar disease [phthiriasis]: L. Sylla; Pherecydes the Syrian (the preceptor of Pythagoras); the Greek poet Alemæon, and Philip II. of Spain.
Phthiriasis is an affection of the skin in which parasites are engendered so numerously as to cover the whole surface of the body. The vermin lay their eggs in the skin and multiply most rapidly.
Herodotus of Old London (The). John Stow, author of the Survey of London (1525—1605).
The Uzbeg Tartars wear a plume of white heron feathers in their turbans.
or Erostratos. An Ephesian who set fire to the temple of Ephesus in order that his name might be perpetuated. The Ephesians made it penal to mention the name, but this law defeated its object (B. C. 356).
Dead as a shotten herring. The shotten herring is one that has shot off or ejected its spawn. This fish dies the very moment it quits the water, from want of air. Indeed, all the herring tribe die very soon after they are taken from their native element. (See Battle.)
“By gar de herring is no dead so as I vill kill him.' — Shakespeare: Merry Wives of Windsor,
Neither barrel the better herring. Much of a muchness; not a pin to choose between you; six of one and half a dozen of the other. The herrings of both barrels are so much alike that there is no choice whatever. In Spanish: “Qual mas qual menos, toda la lana es pelos.”
“Two feloes being like flagicious, and neither barell better herring, accused either other, the kyng Philippus ... sitting in judgment ypon them ... condemned both the one and the other with banishmente.” — Erasmus: Apophthegmes.
(in building). Courses of stone laid angularly, thus: Also applied to strutting placed between thin jcists to increase their strength.
Also a peculiar stitch in needlework, chiefly used in working flannel.
(The). The British Channel; the Atlantic, which separates America from the British Isles; the sea between Australasia and the United Kingdom, are all so called.
“He'll plague you now he's come over the herring—pond.” — Sir W. Scott: Guy Mannering. chap. xxxiv.
(Anglo—Saxon, heort—ford, the hart's ford). The arms of the city are “a hart couchant in water.”
Hertford, invoked by Thomson in his Spring, was Frances Thynne, who married Algernon Seymour, Earl of Hertford, afterwards Duke of Somerset.
Mother earth. Worshipped by all the Scandinavian tribes with orgies and mysterious rites, celebrated in the dark. Her veiled statue was transported from district to district by cows which no hand but the priest's was allowed to touch. Tacitus calls this goddess Cybele.
(4 syl.). Daughter of Laomedon, King of Troy, exposed to a sea—monster, but rescued by Hercules. (See Andromeda.)
Italy was so called by the Greeks, because it was to them the “Western Land;” and afterwards the Romans, for a similar reason, transferred the name to Spain.
(4 syl.). Three sisters who guarded the golden apples which Hera (Juno) received as a marriage gift. They were assisted by the dragon Ladon. Many English poets call the place where these golden apples grew the “garden of the Hesperides.” Shakespeare (Love's Labour's Lost, iv. 3) speaks of climbing trees in the Hesperides.” (See Comus, lines 402—406.)
“Show thee the tree, leafed with refinëd gold,
Whereon the fearful dragon held his seat.
That watched the garden called Hesperides.” Robert Grene: Friar Bacon and
Friar Bungay. (1508.)
The evening star.
“Ere twice in murk and occidental damp,
Moist Hesperus hath quenched his sleepy lamp.” Shakespeare: All's Well that Ends Well, ii. 1.
(pron. He'—se—kasts). The “Quietists” of the East in the fourteenth century. The placed perfection in contemplation. (Greek, hesuchia, quiet.) (See Gibbon, Roman Empire, lxiii.) Milton well expresses their belief in his Comus: —
“Till oft converse with heavenly habitants
Begin to cast a beam on the outward shape,
And turns it by degrees to the soul's essence, Till all be made immortal.” (470—474.)
(3 syl.). Prostitution.
The Greek hetaira (a concubine). According to Plato, “Meretrix, specioso nomine rem odiosam denolante.” (Plut. et Athen.)
The chief of the Cossacks of the Don used to be so called. He was elected by the people, and the mode of choice was thus: The voters threw their fur caps at the candidate they voted for, and he who had the largest number of caps at his feet was the successful candidate. The last Hetman was Count Platoff
A general or commander—in—chief. (German, hauptmann, chief man.)
“After the peace, all Europe hailed their hetman, Platoff, as the hero of the war.” — J. S. Mosby: War Reminiscences, chap. xi. p. 146.
or Heg—monath. Hay—month, the Anglo—Saxon name for July.
Old Hewson the cobbler. Colonel John Hewson, who (as Hume says) “rose from the profession of a cobbler to a high rank in Cromwell's army.”
(The). The six days of creation; any six days taken as one continuous period.
“`Every winged fowl' was produced on the fourth day of the Hexameron.” — W. E. Gladstone: Nineteenth Century, January, 1866.
Hexameter and Pentameter
An alternate metre; often called elegiac verse. Hexameter as described below. Pentameter verse is divided into two parts, each of which ends with an extra long syllable. The former half consists of two metres, dactyls or spondees; the latter half must be two dactyls. The following is a rhyming specimen in English:
Would you be happy an hour, dine well; for a day, tend a wedding;
If for a week, buy a house; if for a month, wed a spouse;
Would you be happy six months, buy a horse; if for twelve, start a carriage;
Happiness long as you live, only contentment can give.
E. C. B.
This metre might be introduced, and would suit epigrams and short poems.
A line of poetry consisting of six measures, the fifth being a dactyl and the sixth either a spondee or a trochee. The other four may be either dactyls or spondees. Homer's two epic poems and Virgil's Æneid are written in hexameters. The latter begins thus:
Arms and the | man I | sing, who | driven from | Troy by ill—| fortune
First into | Italy | came, as | far as the | shores of La—| vina.
Much was he harassed by land, much tossed on the pitiless ocean, All by the force of the gods, and relentless anger of Juno.
E. C. B.
Or rhyming with the Latin,
“Arma virumque cano Trojæ qui primus ab oris.”
Arms and the man I sing who first from the
Phrygian shore is.
“Italian Fato profugus, Lavinaque venit ...”
Tossed to the land of Lavina, although Jove's queen didn't mean it. E. C. B.
Longfellow's Evangeline is in English hexameters.
A book containing the text of the Bible in Hebrew and Greek, with four translations, viz. the Septuagint, with those of Aquila, Theodotion, and Symmachus. The whole is printed in six columns on the page. This was the work of Origen, who also added marginal notes.
When bale is hext, boot is next. When things come to the worst they must soon mend. Bale means misery, hurt, misfortune; hext is highest, as next is nighest; boot means help, profit.
Heyday of Youth
The prime of youth. (Anglo—Saxon, heh—dag, high—day or mid—day of youth.)
Son of Mudjekeewis (the west wind) and Wenonah. His mother died in his infancy, and Hiawatha was brought up by his grandmother, Nokomis, daughter of the Moon. He represents the progress of civilisation among the American Indians. He first wrestled with Mondamin (Indian maize), whom he subdued, and gave to man bread—corn. He then taught man navigation; then he subdued the Mishe—Nahma or sturgeon, and told the people to “bring all their pots and kettles and make oil for winter.” His next adventure was against Megissogwon, the magician, “who sent the fiery fever on man; sent the white fog from the fen—lands; sent disease and death among us;” he slew the terrible monster, and taught man the science of medicine, He next married “Laughing Water,” setting the people an example to follow. Lastly, he taught the people
picture—writing. When the white man landed and taught the Indians the faith of Jesus, Hiawatha exhorted them to receive the words of wisdom, to reverence the missionaries who had come so far to see them, and departed “to the kingdom of Ponemah, the land of the Hereafter.”
Longfellow's song of Hiawath'a may be termed the “Edda” of the North American Indians.
Hiawatha's mittens. “Magic mittens made of deer—skin; when upon his hands he wore them, he could smite the rocks asunder.” (Longfellow: Hiawatha, iv.)
Hiawatha's moccasins. Enchanted shoes made of deer—skin. “When he bound them round his ankles, at each stride a mile he measured.” (Longfellow: Hiawatha, iv.)
A variety of Ierne (Ireland). Pliny says the Irish mothers feed their babes with swords instead of spoons.
“While in Hibernia's fields the labouring swain,
Shall pass the plough o'er skulls of warriors slain, And turn up bones and broken spears,
Amazed, he'll show his fellows of the plain
The relics of victorious years,
And tell how swift thy arms that kingdom did regain.” Hughes: House of Nassau.
Tombstones, so called from the first two words of their inscriptions; “Here lies ...”
“By the cold Hic Jacets of the dead.”
Tennyson: Idylls of the King (Vivien).
(Tom or Jack). A poor labourer in the time of the Conquest, of such enormous strength that, armed with an axletree and cartwheel only, he killed a giant who dwelt in a marsh at Tilney, Norfolk. He was knighted and made governor of Thanet. He is sometimes called Hickafric.
Old Hickory. General Andrew Jackson. Parton says he was first called “Tough,” from his pedestrian powers; then “Tough as hickory;" and lastly, “Old Hickory.”
The title in Spain of the lower nobility. (According to Bishop St. Vincent, the word is compounded of hijo del Goto, son of a Goth; but more probably it is hijo and dalgo. Hija = child or son, and dalgo = respect, as in the phrase, “Facer mucho dalgo,” to receive with great respect. In Portuguese it is Fidalgo.
Hide of Land
No fixed number of “acres,” but such a quantity as was valued at a stated geld or tax. A hide of good arable land was smaller than a hide of inferior quality.
The legacy of jokes. Hierocles, in the fifth Christian century, was the first person who hunted up and compiled jokes. After a life—long labour he mustered together as many as twenty—eight, which he has left to the world as his legacy.
In great confusion; at sixes and sevens. A higgler is a pedlar whose stores are all huddled together. Higgledy means after the fashion of a higgler's basket; and piggledy is a ricochet word suggested by litter; as, a pig's litter.
Of aristocratic birth; “D'une haute naissance;” “Summo loos natus.”
Those who believe the Church [of England] the only true Church; that its baptism is regeneration; and that its priests have the delegated power of absolution (on confession and promise of repentance).
= festivals. On high days and holidays. Here “high” = grand or great; as, “un grand jour.”
or Hifaluten. Tall talk. (Dutch, verlooten, high—flown, stilted.)
“The genius of hifaluten, as the Americans call it ... has received many mortal wounds lately from the hands of satirists. ... A quizzical Jenkins lately described the dress of a New York belle by stating that `she wore an exquisite hyphaluten on her head, while her train was composed of transparent fol—de—rol, and her petticoat of crambambuli flounced with Brussels three—ply of A No. 1.” — Hingston: Introduction to Josh Billings.
With a high hand. Arrogantly. To carry things with a high hand in French would be: “Faire une chose haut la main.”
and Low Heels. The High and Low Church party. The names of two factions in Swift's tale of Lilliput. (Gulliver's Travels.)
To be on the high horse or To ride the high horse. To be over—bearing and arrogant. (For explanation see Horse, “To get upon your high horse.”)
He is at high jinks. The present use of the phrase expresses the idea of uproarious fun and jollity.
“The frolicsome company had begun to practise the ancient and now forgotten pastime of High Jinks. The game was played in several different ways. Most frequently the dice were thrown by the company, and those upon whom the lot fell were obliged to assume and maintain for a time a certain fictitious character, or to repeat a certain number of fescennine verses in a particular order. If they departed from the characters assigned ... they incurred forfeits, which were compounded for by swallowing an additional bumper.” — Sir W. Scott: Guy Mannering, xxxvi.
People of high life. The upper ten, the “haut monde.”
in Scripture language, means elevated spots where sacrifices were offered. Idolatrous worship was much carried on in high places. Some were evidently artificial mounds, for the faithful are frequently ordered to remove or destroy them. Hezekiah removed the high places (2 Kings xviii. 4), so did Asa (2 Chronicles xiv. 3), Jehoshapbat (2 Chronicles xvii. 6), Josiah, and others. On the other hand, Jehoram and Ahaz made high places for idolatrous worship.
To be on the high ropes. To be very grand and mighty in demeanour.
All the sea which is not the property of a particular country. The sea three miles out belongs to the adjacent coast, and is called mare clausum. High—seas, like high—ways, means for the public use. In both cases the word high means “chief,” “principal.” (Latin, allum, “the main sea;” altus, “high.”)
The meal called tea served with cold meats, vegetables, and pastry, in substitution of dinner.
“A well—understood `high tea' should have cold roast beef at the top of the table, a cold Yorkshire pie at the bottom, a mighty ham in the middle. The side dishes will comprise soused mackerel, pickled salmon (in due season), sausages and potatoes, etc., etc. Rivers of tea, coffee, and ale, with dry and buttered toast, sally—lunns, scones, mufflins, and crumpets, jams and marmalade.” — The Daily Telegraph, May 9th, 1893.
has its name from a gate set up there about 400 years ago, to receive tolls for the bishop of London, when the old miry road from Gray's Inn Lane to Barnet was turned through the bishop's park. The village being in a high or elevated situation explains the first part of the name.
Sworn at Highgate. A custom anciently prevailed at the public—houses in Highgate to administer a ludicrous oath to all travellers who stopped there. The party was sworn on a pair of horns fastened to a stick —
(1) Never to kiss the maid when he can kiss the mistress.
(2) Never to eat brown bread when he can get white.
(3) Never to drink small beer when he can get strong — unless he prefers it.
Fists and cuffs; to escape the constable by knocking him down with the aid of a companion.
“The mute eloquence of the miller and smith, which was vested in their clenched fists, was prepared to give highland bail for their arbiter [Edie Ochiltree].” — Sir W. Scott: The Antiquary, chap. xxix.
A name immortalised by Burns, generally thought to be Mary Campbell, but more probably Mary Morison. In 1792 we have three songs to Mary: “Will ye go to the Indies, my Mary?” “Highland Mary” (“Ye banks and braes of bonnie Doon"), and “To Mary in Heaven” (“Thou lingering star,” etc.). These were all written some time after the consummation of his marriage with Jean Armour (1788), from the recollection
of “one of the most interesting passages of his youthful days.” Four months after he had sent to Mr. Thomson the song called “Highland Mary" he sent that entitled “Mary Morison,” which he calls “one of his juvenile works.” Thus all the four songs refer to some youthful passion, and three of them at least were sent in letters addressed to Mr. Thomson, so that little doubt can exist that the Mary of all the four is one and the same person, called by the author Mary Morison.
“How blythely wad I bide the stoure,
A weary slave frae sun to sun,
Could I the rich reward secure—
The lovely Mary Morison.”
Highlands of Scotland
(The) include all the country on the northern side of a line drawn from the Moray Frith to the river Clyde, or (which is about the same thing) from Nairn to Glasgow.
Highlanders of Attica
The operative class, who had their dwellings on the hills (Diacrii).
The Khedive of Egypt is styled “Your Highness,” or “His Highness;” The children of kings and queens, “Your Royal Highness,” or “His Royal Highness;” The children of emperors, “Your Imperial Highness,” or “His Imperial Highness.”
Till the reign of Henry VIII. the kings of England were styled “Your Highness,” “Your Grace,” “Your Excellent Grace,” etc., or “His” etc.
The four most celebrated are. —
Claude Duval, who died 1670. James Whitney, who died 1694, at the age of 34. Jonathan Wild, of Wolverhampton (1682—1725) Jack Sheppard, of Spitalfields (1701—1724).
in the Law Courts, begins on Plough Monday (q.v.) and ends the Wednesday before Easter. It is so called in honour of St. Hillary, whose day is January 14.
(Meister). The Nestor of German romance. Like Maugis among the heroes of Charlemagne, he was a magician as well as champion.
Hildebrand. Pope Gregory VII. (1013, 1073—1085).
A Hildebrand. One resembling Pope Gregory VII., noted for subjugating the power of the German emperors; and specially detested by the early reformers for his ultra—pontifical views.
(Duke). President of the Alsatian club. (Sir W. Scott: Fortunes of Nigel.)
A monk of Hildesheim doubting how with God a thousand years could be as one day, listened to the singing of a bird in a wood, as he thought for three minutes, but found the time had been three hundred years. Longfellow has borrowed this tale and introduced it in his Golden Legend. (See Felix.)
(Sir John), M. D., botanist (1716—1775). He wrote some farces, which called forth from Garrick the following couplet:
“For physic and farces his equal there scarce is.
His farces are physic, his physic a farce is,”
Hill—folk The Cameronian Scotch Covenanters, who met clandestinely among the hills. Sometimes the Covenanters generally are so called. Sir W Scott used the words as a synonym of Cameronians.
or Hill—folk. A class of beings in Scandinavian tradition between the elves and the human race. They are supposed to dwell in caves and small hills, and are bent on receiving the benefits of man's redemption.
The barbarous tribes dwelling in remote parts of the Deccan or plateau of Central India.
Prayers were offered on the tops of high hills, and temples built on “high places,” from the notion that the gods, could better hear prayers on such places, as they were nearer heaven. As Lucian says, And Tacitus says, “maxime coelo appropinquare, precesque mortalium a Deo nusquam propius audire.” It will be remembered that Balak (Numbers xxiii. xxiv.) took Balaam to the top of Peor and other high places when Balaam wished to consult God. We often read of “idols on every high hill.” (Ezek. vi. 13.)
The Greek gods dwelt on Mount Olympus.
(3 syl.). Wife of Charlemagne, who surpassed all other women in nobleness of mien.
“Her neck was tinged with a delicate rose, like that of a Roman matron in former ages. Her locks were bound about her temples with gold and purple bands. Her dress was looped up with ruby clasps. Her coronet and her purple robes gave her an air of surpassing majesty.” — Croque—mitaine, iii.
Hinc illæ Lacrymæ
This was the real offence; this was the true secret of the annoyance; this, entre nous, was the real source of the vexation.
Perchance `tis Mara's song that gives offence —
Iline illce lacrymae — I fear
The song that once could charm the royal sense, Delights, alas! no more the royal ear.”
Peter Pindar: Ode upon Ode.
Emblematic of St. Giles, because “a heaven—directed hind went daily to give him milk in the desert, near the mouth of the Rhone.” (See Hart.)
The hind of Sertorius. Sertorius was invited by the Lusitanians to defend them against the Romans. He had a tame white hind, which he taught to follow him, and from which he pretended to receive the instructions of Dian'a. By this artifice, says Plutarch, he imposed on the superstition of the people.
He feigned a demon (in a hind concealed)
To him the counsels of the gods revealed.”
Camoens: Lusiad, i
The milk—white hind, in Dryden's poem, The Hind and the Panther, means the Roman Catholic Church, milk—white because “infallible.” The panther, full of the spots of error, is the Church of England.
Without unspotted, innocent within,
She feared no danger, for she knew no sin.” Part i, lines 3, 4.
Daughter of Al Hassan, the Arabian ameer of Persia. Her lover, Hafed, was a Gheber or Fire—worshipper, the sworn enemy of Al Hassan and all his race. Al Hassan sent her away for safety, but she was taken captive by Hafed's party, and when her lover (betrayed to Al Hassan) burnt himself to death in the sacred fire, Hinda cast herself headlong into the sea. (T. Moore: The Fire—Worshippers.)
Hinder is to hold one behind; whereas prevent is to go before (Anglo—Saxon hinder, behind, verb hindrian).
The country of the Hindûs. (Hind [Persic] and Sind [Sanskrit] means “black,” and tan = territory is very common, as Afghanistan, Beloochistan, Farsistan, Frangistan, Koordistan [the country of the Koords], Kohistan [the high—country], Kafiristan [the infidel country], etc.)
The 76th; so called because it first distinguished itself in Hindustan. It is also called the Seven and Sixpennies, from its number. Now the 2nd battalion of the West Riding, the 1st being the old No.
The most famous house—spirit or kobold of German legend. He lived four years in the old castle of Hudemühlen, where he had a room set apart for him. At the end of the fourth year (1588) he went away of his own accord, and never again returned.
(To). A hip means a hypochondriac. To hip means to make melancholy; to fret; to make one dismal or gloomy with forebodings. Hipped means melancholy, in low spirits.
“For one short moment let us cease
To mourn the loss of many ships —
Forget how tax and rates increase,
And all that now the nation Lips.”
Sims: The Dagonet Ballad. (A Set—off).
Hip and Thigh
To smite hip and thigh. To slay with great carnage. A Hebrew phrase. (German, Arm and bein.)
Perhaps there may be some reference to the superstition about the ossacrum (q.v.).
“And be smote them hip and thigh with great slaughter.” — Judges xv. 8.
Hip! Hip! Hurrah!
Hip is said to be a notarica, composed of the initial letters of Hicrosolyma Est Perdita. Henri van Laun says, in Notes and Queries, that whenever the German knights headed a Jew—hunt in the Middle Ages, they ran shouting “Hip! Hip!” as much as to say “Jerusalem is destroyed.” (See Notarica.)
Timbs derives Hurrah from the Sclavonic hu—raj (to Paradise), so that Hip! hip! hurrah! would mean “Jerusalem is lost to the infidel, and we are on the road to Paradise.” These etymons may be taken for what they are worth. The word hurrah! is a German exclamation also.
“Now, infidel, I have thee on the hip” (Merchant of Venice); and again, “I'll have our Michael Cassio on the hip” (Othello), to have the whip hand of one. The term is derived from wrestlers, who seize the adversary by the hip and throw him.
“In fine he doth apply one speciall drift.
Which was to get the pagan on the hip,
And having caught him right, he doth him lift By nimble sleight, and in such wise doth trip, That down he threw him.”Sir J. Harington.
Coarse willow withes. A hipper is a coarse osier used in basket—making, and an osier field is a hipper—holm.
Bishop of Hippo. A title by which St. Augustine is sometimes desigated. (354—430.)
Hippocampus (4 syl.). A seahorse, having the head and fore—quarters of a horse, with the tail and hind—quarters of a fish or dolphin. (Greek, hippos, a horse; kampos, a sea monster.)
A cordial made of Lisbon and Canary wines, bruised spices, and sugar; so called from the strainer through which it is passed, called by apothecaries Hippocrates' sleeve. Hippocrates in the Middle Ages was called “Yypocras” or “Hippocras.” Thus:
“Well knew he the old Esculapius,
And Deiscorides, and cek Rufus,
Old Yypocras, Haly, and Galien.
Chaucer: Canterbury Tales Prologue, 431).
A school of medicine, so called from Hippocrates. (See Dogmatic.)
A woollen bag of a square piece of flannel, having the opposite corners joined, so as to make it triangular. Used by chemists for straining syrups, decoctions, etc.
(3 syl.). The fountain of the Muses, produced by a stroke of the hoof of Pegasos (Greek, hippos, horse; krene, fountain).
The winged horse, whose father was a griffin and mother a filly (Greek, hippos, a horse, and gryphos, a griffin). A symbol of love. (Ariosto: Orlando Furioso, iv. 18, 19.)
“So saying, he caught him up, and without wing
Of hippogrif, bore through the air sublime,
Over the wilderness and o'er the plain.”
Milton: Paradise Regained, iv. 541—3.
Queen of the Amazons, and daughter of Mars. Shakespeare has introduced the character in his Midsummer Night's Dream, where he betroths her to Theseus, Duke of Athens. In classic fable it is her sister Antiope who married Theseus, although some writers justify Shakespeare's account. Hippolyta was famous for a girdle given her by her father, and it was one of the twelve labours of Hercules to possess himself of this prize.
Son of Theseus (2 syl.), King of Athens. He was dragged to death by wild horses, and restored to life by Esculapios.
the cardinal to whom Ariosto dedicated his Orlando Furioso.
Hippomenes (4 syl.). A Grecian prince, who ran a race with Atalanta for her hand in marriage. He had three golden apples, which he dropped one by one, and which the lady stopped to pick up. By this delay she lost the race.
The theologian consulted by Panurge (2 syl.) on the all—important question, “S'ildoit semarier?” (Rabelais: Pantagruel, book iii.)
Mutes and other undertakers' employees at funerals. The Undersheriff Layton, in his will, desired that he might be “buried without hired grief” (1885).
A strumpet. From Peele's play, The Turkish Mahomet and Hyren the Fair Greek. (See 2 Henry IV., ii.
Spain. So called from the Punic word Span (a rabbit), on account of the vast number of rabbits which the Carthaginians found in the peninsula. Others derive its from the Basque Expana (a border).
The nom de plume in the Times of Sir W. Vernon Harcourt, now (1895) Chancellor of the Exchequer.
Our oldest historian is the Venerable Bede, who wrote in Latin an Ecclesiastical History of very great merit (672—735). Of secular historians, William of Poitiers, who wrote in Latin The Gests or Deeds of William, Duke of Normandy and King of the English (1020—1088). His contemporary was Ingulphus, who wrote a history of Croyland Abbey (1030—1109). The oldest prose work in Early English is Sir John Mandeville's account of his Eastern travels in 1356.
The Father of History. Herodotos the Greek historian (B.C. 484—408). So called by Cicero. The Father of Ecclesiastical History. Eusebius of Caesare (264—340).
Father of French History. AndréDuchesne (1584—1640). Father of Historic Painting. Polygnotos of Thao (flourished B.C. 463—435).
History of Croyland Abbey
by Ingulphus, and its continuation to 1118 by Peter of Blois, were proved to be literary impositions by Sir F. Palgrave in the Quarterly Review, vol. xxxiv., No. 67.
is from the Etruscan word hister (a dancer), histriones (ballet—dancers). Hence, histrio in Latin means a stage—player, and our word histrionic, pertaining to the drama. History is quite another word, being the Greek historia, histor, a judge, allied to histamai, to know.
A great hit. A piece of good luck. From the game hit and miss, or the game of backgammon, where “two hits equal a gammon.”
Hit it Off
(To). To describe a thing tersely and epigrammatically; to make a sketch truthfully and quickly. The French say, “Ce pcintre vous saisit la resemblance en un clin d'oeil. “
To hit it off together. To agree together, or suit each other.
Hit the Nail on the Head
(To). (See Head .)
There is some hitch. Some impediment. A horse is said to have a hitch in his gait when he is lame. (Welsh, hecian, to halt or limp.)
To hitch. To get on smoothly; to fit in consistently: as, “You and I hitch on well together;” “These two accounts do not hitch in with each other.” A lame horse goes about jumping, and to jump together is to be in accord. So the two meanings apparently contradictory hitch together. Compare prevent, meaning to aid and to resist.
Hivites (2 syl.). The students of St. Bee's College, Cumberland. (Bee—hives.)
The ancient title of the Chinese kings, meaning “sovereign lord.” (See King.)
(37, Fleet Street, London). The golden bottle over the fanlight is said to contain the half—crown with which James Hoare started in business.
A landmark. A stone marking out the boundary of an estate.
(See Canard .)
of a grate. From the Anglo—Saxon verb habban (to hold). The chimney—corner, where at one time a settle stood on each side, was also called “the hob.”
Hob and Nob
together. To drink as cronies, to clink glasses, to drink tête—à—têle. In the old English houses there was a hob at each corner of the hearth for heating the beer, or holding what one wished to keep hot. This was from the verb habban (to hold). The little round table set at the elbow was called a nob; hence to
hob—nob was to drink snugly and cosily in the chimney—corner, with the beer hobbed, and a little nobtable set in the snuggery. (See Hob Nob.)
The English Hobbema. John Crome, the elder (of Norwich), whose last words were, “O Hobbema, Hobbema, how I do love thee!”
The Scotch Hobbema. P. Nasmyth, a Scotch landscape painter (born 1831).
(4 syl.). The prince of dumbness, and one of the five fiends that possessed “poor Tom.” (Shakespeare: King Lear, iv. 1.)
The shepherd (Gabriel Harvey, the poet, 1545—1630) who relates a song in praise of Eliza, queen of shepherds (Queen Elizabeth). (Spenser: Shepherd's Calendar.)
The principles of Thomas Hobbes, author of Leviathan (1588—1670). He taught that religion is a mere engine of state, and that man acts wholly on a consideration of self; even his benevolent acts spring from the pleasure he experiences in doing acts of kindness. A follower of Hobbes is called a Hobbist.
or Clopinel. Jean de Meung, the poet, who wrote the sequel to the Romance of the Rose (1260—1320).
Tyrtæus, the Greek elegiac poet, was called Hobbler because he introduced the alternate pentameter verse, which is one foot short of the old heroic metre.
A favourite pursuit. The hobby is a falcon trained to fly at pigeons and partridges. As hawks were universal pets in the days of falconry, and hawking the favourite pursuit, it is quite evident how the word hobby got its present meaning. Hobby—horse is a corruption of Hobby—hause (hawk—tossing), or throwing off the hawk from the wrist. Hobby is applied to a little pet riding—horse by the same natural transposition as a mews for hawks is now a place for horses. (French, hobereau, a hawk, a hobby.)
A child's plaything, so called from the hobby—horse of the ancient morris—dance; a light frame of wicker—work, appropriately draped, in which someone was placed, who performed ridiculous gambols.
“The hobby—horse doth hither prance,
Maid Marrian and the Morris dance.”
sometimes written Hobbledchoy and hobidy—hoy, between a man and a boy; neither hay nor grass. Tusser says the third age of seven years (15 to 21) is to be kept “under Sir Hobbard de Hoy.”
Puck or robin Good—fellow. Keightley thinks it a corruption of Rob—Goblin — i.e. the goblin Robin, just as Hodge is the nickname of Roger, which seems to agree with the subjoined quotation:
“Those that Hobgoblin call you, and sweet Puck,
You do their work, and they shall have good luck.”
Shakespeare: Midsummer Night's Dream, ii. .1
Hob is certainly sometimes used for a sprite or fairy, as a hob—lantern — i.e. an ignis fatuus or fairy—lantern, but this may mean a “Puck—lantern” or “Robin Goodfellow—lantern.”
(See Hobbinol .)
or Hovellers. Men who keep a light nag that they may give instant information of threatened invasion, or ugly customers at sea. (Old French, hober, to move up and down; our hobby, q.v. ) In mediæval times hoblers were like the German uhlands. Their duties were to reconnoitre, to carry intelligence, to harass stragglers, to act as spies, to intercept convoys, and to pursue fugitives. Spelman derives the word from hobby.
“Hobblers were another description of cavalry more lightly armed, and taken from the class of men rated at 15 pounds and upwards.” — Lingard: History of England, vol. iv. chap. ii. p. 116.
“Sentinels who kept watch at beacons in the lsle of Wight, and ran to the governor when they had any intelligence to communicate, were called hoblers.” — MS. Lansd. (1033).
When the London sheriff is sworn in, the tenants of a manor in Shropshire are directed to come forth and do service, whereupon the senior alderman below the chair steps forward and chops a stick, in token that the tenants of this county supplied their feudal lord with fuel.
The owners of a forge in St. Clements are then called forth to do suit and service, when an officer of the court produces six horse—shoes and sixty—one hobnails, which he used to count before the cursitor baron till that office was abolished in 1857.
A corruption of hab nab, meaning “have or not have,” hence hit or miss, at random; and, secondarily, give or take, whence also an open defiance. A similar construction to willy nilly. (Anglo—Saxon, habban, to have; nabban, not to have.)
“The citizens in their rage shot habbe or nabbe [hit or miss] at random.” — Holinshed: History of Ireland.
“He writes of the weather hab nab [at random], and as the toy [fancy] takes him, chequers the year with foul and fair.” — Quack Astrologer (1673).
“He is a devil in private brawls ... hob nob is his word, give 't or take 't.” — Shakespeare: Twelfth Night, iii. 4.
“Not of Jack Straw, with his rebellious crew,
That set king, realm and laws at hab or nab
[defiance].” Sir J. Harington: Epigram, iv.
To be in Hob's pound is to be under difficulties, in great embarrassment. Hob is a clownish rustic, and hoberd is a fool or ne'er—do—well. To be in Hob's pound is to be in the pound of a hob or hoberd —
i.e. paying for one's folly.
This or none. Tobias Hobson was a carrier and innkeeper at Cambridge, who erected the handsome conduit there, and settled “seven lays” of pasture ground towards its maintenance. “He kept a stable of forty good cattle, always ready and fit for travelling; but when a man came for a horse he was led into the stable, where there was great choice, but was obliged to take the horse which stood nearest to the stable—door; so that every customer was alike well served, according to his chance, and every horse ridden with the same justice.” (Spectator, No. 509.)
Milton wrote two quibbling epitaphs upon this eccentric character.
“Why is the greatest of free communities reduced to Hobson's choice?” — The Times.
So called from Hockheim, on the Maine, where the best is supposed to be made. It used to be called hockamore (3 syl.).
“As unfit to bottle as old hockamore.” — Mortimer.
The high cart, the last cart—load of harvest.
“The harvest swains and wenches bound
For joy, to see the hock—cart crowned.”
Herrick: Hesperides, p. 114.
or Hock Tuesday. The day when the English surprised and slew the Danes, who had annoyed them for 255 years. This Tuesday was long held as a festival in England, and landlords received an annual tribute called Hock—money, for allowing their tenants and serfs to commemorate Hock—day, which was the second Tuesday after Easter—day. (See Kenilworth, chap. xxxix.)
Hock—tide was the time of paying church dues.
“Hoke Monday was for the men, and Hock Tuesday for the women. On both days the men and women alternately, with great merryment, obstructed the public road with ropes, and pulled passengers to them, from whom they exacted money to be laid out in pious uses.” — Brand: Antiquities (Hoke day), vol. i. p. 187.
A game in which each player has a hooked stick or bandy with which to strike the ball. Hockey is simply the diminutive of hook. Called Shinty in Scotland.
Stopping the highways with ropes, and demanding a gratuity from passengers before they were allowed to pass. (See quotation from Brand under Hock—Day.)
Public gardens near Clerkenwell Green, famous for bear— and bull—baiting, dog— and
cock—fights, etc. The earliest record of this garden is a little subsequent to the Restoration.
The words uttered by a conjuror when he performs a trick, to cheat or take surreptitiously. The Welsh, hocea pwca (a goblin's trick, our hoax) is a probable etymology. But generally supposed to be Hoc est oorpus.
Ochus Bochus was the name of a famous magician of the North invoked by jugglers. He is mentioned in the French Royal Dictionary.
Hoaxed, cheated, tampered with; as, “This wine is hocussed.”
“Was ever man so hocussed?”
Art of Wheedling, p. 322.
(3 syl.) means Little—hat, a German goblin or domestic fairy; so called because he always wore a little felt hat over his face. Our hudkin.
A generic name for a farm—labourer or peasant. (Said to be an abbreviated form of Roger, as Hob is of Rob or Robin.)
“Promises held out in order to gain the votes of the agricultural labourers; promises given simply to obtain the vote of `Hodge,' who will soon find out that his vote was all that was wanted.” — Newspaper paragraph, Dec., 1885.
(2 syl.). A medley. A corruption of hotch—pot, i.e. various fragments mixed together in the “pot—au—feu.” (See Hotch—Pot.)
Balder's twin brother; the God of Darkness; the blind god who killed Balder, at the instigation of Loki, with an arrow made of mistletoe. Hödur typifies night, as Balder typifies day. (Scandinavian mythology.)
“And Balder's pile of the glowing sun
A symbol true blazed forth;
But soon its splendour sinketh down
When Höder rules the earth.”
Frithiof—Saga: Balder's Bale—Fire.
meaning a piece of money, is any silver coin — sixpence, shilling, or five—shilling. It is probably derived from the largess given on New Year's Eve called hog—manay, pronounced hog—money.
In the Bermudas the early coins bore the image of a hog.
seems to refer to age more than to any specific animal. Thus, boars of the second year, sheep between the time of their being weaned and shorn, colts, and bullocks a year old, are all called hogs or hoggets. A boar three years old is a “hog—steer.”
Some say a hogget is a sheep after its first shearing, but a “hogget—fleece” is the first shearing.
To go the whole hog. An American expression meaning unmixed democratical principles. It is used in England to signify a “thorough goer” of any kind. In Virginia the dealer asks the retail butcher if “he means to go the whole hog, or to take only certain joints, and he regulates his price accordingly.” (Men and Manners of America.
Mahomet forbade his followers to eat one part of the pig, but did not particularise what part he intended. Hence, strict Mahometans abstain from pork altogether, but those less scrupulous eat any part they fancy. Cowper refers to this in the lines:
“With sophistry their sauce they sweeten,
Till quite from tail to snout `tis eaten.”
Love of the World Reproved.
Another explanation is this: A hog in Ireland is slang for “a shilling,” and to go the whole hog means to spend the whole shilling. (See Hog.)
You have brought your hags to a fine market. You have made a pretty kettle of fish.
“You have brought your hogs to a fine market.” —
A village in Oxfordshire, now called Hook Norton. I think you were born at Hogs—Norton. A re—proof to an ill—mannered person.
“I think thou wast born at Hoggs—Norton, where piggs play upon the organs.” — Howell: English Proverbs, p. 16.
Hog in Armour
A person of awkward manners dressed so fine that he cannot move easily. A corruption of “Hodge in armour.”
(See under the word Brewer .)
(William), called the “Juvenal of Painters" (1695—1764). The Scottish Hogarth, David Allan (1744—1796).
Holland or the Netherlands; so called from Hooge en Mogendé (high and mighty), the Dutch style of addressing the States—General.
“But I have sent him for a token
To your Low—country Hogen—Mogen.”
or Hagmen'a. Holy month.
New Year's Eve is called hogmanay'—night or hogg—night, and it is still the custom in parts of Scotland for persons to go from door to door on that night asking in rude rhymes for cakes or money. (See Hog.)
In Galloway the chief features are “taking the cream off the water,” wonderful luck being attached to a draught thereof; and “the first foot,” or giving something to drink to the first person who enters the house. A grand bonfire and a procession, in which all persons are masked and in bizarre costume.
King Haco, of Norway, fixed the feast of Yole on Christmas Day, the eve of which used to be called hogg—night, which in the old style is New Year's Eve.
a large cask = 1/2—pipe or butt, is a curious instance of the misuse of h. The word is from the Danish Oxe—hud (ox—hide), the larger skins in contradistinction to the smaller goat skins. An oxe—hud contained 240 Danish quarts.
(The). The poll—men in our Universities, that is, those who take their degrees without “honours.” The proletariat. (Greek, meaning “the many,” “the general.”)
Hoist with his own petard. Beaten with his own weapons, caught in his own trap. The petard was a thick iron engine, filled with gun—powder, and fastened to gates, barricades, and so on, to blow them up. The danger was lest the engineer who fired the petard should be blown up in the explosion.
“Let it work;
For `tis the sport to have the engineer
Hoist with his own petard; and it shall go hard But I will delve one yard below their mines, And blow them at the moon.”
Shakespeare: Hamlet, iii. 4.
(1) Hoity—toity spirits means high spirits, extremely elated and flighty. Selden, in his Table Talk, says: “In Queen Elizabeth's time gravity and state were kept up ... but in King Charles's time there was nothing but Frenchmore [French manners] ... tolly—polly, and hoit—comme—toit, ' where hoit comme toit means flightiness.
(2) As an exclamation of reproof it means, Your imagination or spirits are running out of all bounds; hoit—a—toit! hity—tity! “Hoity—toity! What have I to do with dreams?” (Congreve.
We have the verb “to hoit” = to assume; to be elated in spirits, and perhaps hoity—toity is only one of those words with which our language abounds; as, harum—scarum, titty—totty, nambypamby, hugger—mugger, fiddle—faddle, and scores of others.
or Hockey Cake. Harvest cake. The cake given out to the harvesters when the hock cart reached home. (See Hock Cart.)
is not a corruption of Old Bourne, as Stowe asserts, but of Holeburne, the burne or stream in the hole or hollow. It is spelt Holeburne in Domesday Book, i. 127a; and in documents connected with the nunuery of St. Mary, Clerkenwell (during the reign of Richard II.), it is eight times spelt in the same way. (The Times; J. G. Waller.)
He rode backwards up Holborn Hill. He went to be hanged. The way to Tyburn from Newgate was up Holborn Hill, and criminals in ancient times sat with their backs to the horse, when drawn to the place of execution.
Hold of a ship is between the lowest deck and the keel. In merchant vessels it holds the main part of the cargo. In men of war it holds the provisions, water for drinking, etc., stores, and berths. The after hold is aft the main—mast; the main hold is before the same; and the fore hold is about the fore hatches.
(Anglo—Saxon, heald—an, to hold.)
He is not fit to hold the candle to him. He is very inferior. The allusion is to link—boys who held candles in theatres and other places of night amusement.
“Others say that Mr. Handel
To Bonocini can't hold a candle.” Swift.
To cry hold. Stop. The allusion is to the old military tournaments; when the umpires wished to stop the contest they cried out “Hold!”
“Lay on Macduff,
And damn'd be him that first cries, `Hold, enough!' “ Shakespeare: Macbeth, v. 8.
(To). To speak in public; to harangue; to declaim. An author holds forth certain opinions or ideas in his book, i.e. exhibits them or holds them out to view. A speaker does the same in an oratorical display.
Keep a firm hold, seat, or footing, as there is danger else of being overthrown. A caution given when a sudden change of vis inertiæ is about to occur.
(To). To restrain. The allusion is to horses reined up tightly when running too fast.
Keep at a distance. In French, “Tenez—vous á distance! “
Cling fast; to persist. The idea is clinging firmly to something to prevent falling or being overset.
Not to succumb to. “Tenir ferme; ” “Cette place ne saurait tenir. “
(To). To bear close inspection; to endure a trial. A vessel that will hold water is safe and sound.
Hold One Guilty
(To). To adjudge or regard as guilty. The French tenir.
Hold One in Hand
(To). To amuse in order to get some advantage. The allusion is to horses held in hand or under command of the driver.
Hold One's Own
(To). To maintain one's own opinion, position, way, etc. Maintain means to hold with the hand. (Latin, manus teneo.)
Hold the Fort
Immortalised as a phrase from its use by General Sherman, who signalled it to General Corse from the top of Kenesaw in 1864.
Brag is a good dog, but Holdfast is a better. Promises are all very good, but acts are far better.
“Holdfast is the only dog, my duck.”
Shakespeare: Henry V., ii. 3.
A means by which something is clamped to another; a support.
Hole Pick a hole in his coat. To find out some cause of blame. The allusion is to the Roman custom of dressing criminals in rags (Livy, ii. 61). Hence, a holey coat is a synonym for guilt.
“Hear, Land o' cakes and brither Scots
Frae Maidenkirk to Johnny Groat's
If there's a hole in a your coats
I rede you tent it;
A chield's amang you taking notes,
And, faith, he'll prent it.”
Burns: On the late Capt. Grose, stanza 1.
Hole and Corner
(business). Underhand and secret.
or Words. Fine or well—turned speeches or phrases; complimentary speeches. We have also “holiday manners,” “holiday clothes,” meaning the best we have.
“Aye, aye, sir. I know your worship loves no holiday speeches.” — Sir W. Scott: Redgauntlet, chap. iii.
“With many holiday and lady terms
He questioned me.”
Shakespeare: I Henry IV., i. 3 (Hotspur's defence).
(4 syl.), called English Henry (in Jerusalem Delivered). One of the Christian knights in the first crusade, slain by Dragutes (book ix.).
The country of paradoxes. The “houses are built on the sand;" the sea is higher than the shore; the keels of the ships are above the chimney—tops of the houses; and the cow's tail does not “grow downward,” but is tied up to a ring in the roof of the stable. Butler calls it:
“A land that rides at anchor and is moored,
In which they do not live, but go aboard.”
Description of Holland.
(See also Don Juan, canto x. 63.)
Holland. A particular kind of cloth; so called because it used to be sent to Holland to be bleached. Lawn is cloth bleached on a lawn; and grass—lawn is lawn bleached on a grass—plat.
Bleaching is now performed by artificial processes.
I beat him hollow. A corruption of “I beat him wholly.”
used to be employed by the early Christians at Rome to decorate churches and dwellings at Christmas; it had been previously used in the great festival of the Saturnalia, which occurred at the same season of the year. The pagan Romans used to send to their friends holly—sprigs, during the Saturnalia, with wishes for their health and well—being.
is the Anglo—Saxon, holihoc, the marsh—mallow. It is a mistake to derive it from Holy—oak.
(Lieutenant James). The blind traveller (1787—1857).
Holophernes (4 syl.). Master Tubal Holophernes. The great sophister—doctor, who, in the course of five years and three months, taught Gargantua to say his A B C backward. (Rabelais: Gargantua, book i. 14.)
Holofernes, in Love's Labour's Lost. Shakespeare satirises in this character the literary affectations of the Lyly school. An anagram of Johnes Florio.
A league formed by Russia, Austria, and Prussia to regulate the affairs of Europe “by the principles of Christian charity,” — meaning that each of the contracting parties was to keep all that the league assigned them (1816).
That city which the religious consider most especially connected with their religious faith, thus: Allahabad' is the Holy City of the Indian Mahometans.
Benares (3 syl.) of the Hindus.
Cuzco of the ancient Incas.
Fez of the Western Arabs.
Jerusalem of the Jews and Christians.
Kairwan. near Tunis. It contains the Okbar Mosque, in which is the tomb of the prophet's barber. Kief, the Jerusalem of Russia, the cradle of Christianity in that country.
Mecca and Medina of the Mahometans.
Moscow and Kief of the Russians.
Solovetsk, in the Frozen Sea, is a holy Island much visited by pilgrims.
of Treves, said to be the seamless coat of our Saviour. Deposited at Treves by the Empress Helena, who discovered it in the fourth century.
(The). The fellowship of Christians manifested by their mutual partaking of the eucharist. The eucharist itself is, by a figure of speech, so called.
The infant Saviour and his attendants, as Joseph, Mary, Elizabeth, Anna, and John the Baptist. All the five figures are not always introduced in pictures of the “Holy Family.”
Lindisfarne, in the German Ocean, about eight miles from Berwick—upon—Tweed. It was once the see of the famous St. Cuthbert, but now the bishopric is that of Durham. The ruins of the old cathedral are still visible.
Ireland used to be called the Holy Island on account of its numerous “saints.” Guernsey was so called in the tenth century in consequence of the great number of monks residing there. Rugen was so called by the Slavonic Varini.
Scattery, to which St. Senanus retired, and swore that no female should set foot there, is the one referred to by Thomas Moore in his Irish Melodies, No. ii. 2.
“Oh! haste and leave this sacred isle
... For on thy deck though dark it be,
A female form I see.
(The). (1) Christians call Palestine the Holy Land, because it was the site of Christ's oirth, ministry, and death. (2) Mahometans call Mecca the Holy Land, because Mahomet was born there.
(3) The Chinese Buddhists call India the Holy Land, because it was the native land of Sakya—muni, the Buddha (q.v.
(4) The Greek considered Elis as Holy Land, from the temple of Olympian Zeus and the sacred festival held there every four years.
(5) In America each of the strange politico—religious sects calls its own settlement pretty much the same thing. (See Holy City.)
(The). A combination formed by Pope Julius II. with Louis XII. of France, Maximilian of Germany, Ferdinand III. of Spain, and various Italian princes, against the republic of Venice in 1508.
There was another league so called in the reign of Henri III. of France, in 1576, under the auspices of Henri de Guise, “for the defence of the Holy Catholic Church against the encroachments of the reformers.” The Pope gave it his sanction, but its true strength lay in Felipe II. of Spain.
Holy Orders in the English Church, are those of priest and deacon. In the Roman Church the term includes the sub—diaconate. ( See Minor Orders.)
Places in which the chief events of our Saviour's life occurred, such as the Sepulchre, Gethsemane, the Supper—room, the Church of the Ascension, the tomb of the Virgin, and so on.
The day of our Lord's ascension.
The Saturday before Easter Sunday.
are to extirpate “heresy,” or to extend what the state supposes to be the one true religion. The Crusades, the Thirty—Years' War, the wars against the Albigenses, etc., were so called.
Water blessed by a priest or bishop for holy uses.
As the devil loves holy water; i.e. not at all. This proverb arose from the employment of holy water in exorcisms in the Holy Church.
“I love him as the devil loves holy water.”
The last seven days of Passion Week or the Great Week. It begins on Palm Sunday, and ends with Holy Saturday (q.v.). The fourth day is called “Spy Wednesday;” the fifth is “Maundy Thursday;" the sixth is “Good Friday;” and the last “Holy Saturday” or the “Great Sabbath.”
Holy Week has been called Hebdomada Muta (Silent Week); Hebdomada Passionis; Hebdomada Inofficiosa (Vacant Week); Hebdomada Penitentialis; Hebdomada Indulgentioe Hebdomada Buotuosa; Hebdomada Nigra; and Hebdomada Ultima.
Holy Maid of Kent
(The). Elizabeth Barton, who incited the Roman Catholics to resist the progress of the Reformation, and pretendéd to act under direct inspiration. She was hanged at Tyburn in 1534.
Holy of Holies
(The). The innermost apartment of the Jewish temple, in which the ark of the covenant was kept, and into which only the High Priest was allowed to enter, and that but once a year — the day of atonement.
Holy Water Sprinkler
A military club set with spikes. So called facetiously because it makes the blood to flow as water sprinkled by an aspergillum.
(London). Fitzstephens, in his description of London in the reign of Henry II., speaks of “the excellent springs at a small distance from the city,” whose waters are most sweet, salubrious, and clear, and whose runnels murmur over the shining stones. “Among these are Holywell, Clerkenwell, and St. Clement's well.”
A soft sandstone used for scrubbing the decks of vessels.
(1 syl.). (Anglo—Saxon, ham.) Our long home, the grave.
Who goes home? When the House of Commons breaks up at night the door—keeper asks this question of the members. In bygone days all members going in the direction of the Speaker's residence went in a body to see him safe home. The question is still asked, but is a mere relic of antiquity.
Home, Sweet Home Words by John Howard Payne (an American), introduced in the melodrama called The Maid of Milan.
Called Melesigenes (q.v.; the Man of Chios (sce CHIOS); the Blind Old Man; Mæonides (q.v., or Mæonius, either from his father Mæon, or because he was a native of Mæonia (Lydia). He is spoken of as Mæonius senex, and his poems as Mæoniæchartæ or Mæonia carmina
The Casket Homer. An edition corrected by Aristotle, which Alexander the Great always carried about with him, and laid under his pillow at night with his sword. After the battle of Arbeéla, a golden casket richly studded with gems was found in the tent of Darius; and Alexander being asked to what purpose it should be assigned, replied, “There is but oue thing in the world worthy of so costly a depository,” saying which he placed therein his edition of Homer.
The British Homer. Milton (1608—74). The Celtic Homer. Ossian, son of Fingal, King of Morven. The Homer of dramatic poets. Shakespeare is so called by Dryden. (1564—1616.)
“Shakespeare was the Homer of our dramatic poets; Jonson was the Virgil. I admire rare Ben, but I love Shakespeare.” — Dryden.
Homer of Ferrára. Ariosto is so called by Tasso (1474—1533).
Homer of the Franks. Charlemagne called Angilbert his Homer (died 814). The Oriental Homer. Firdusi, the Persian poet, who wrote the Cháh Nâmeh (or history of the Persian kings). It contains 120,000 verses, and was the work of thirty years (940—1020).
The Homer of Philosophers. Plato (B.C. 429—347). The prose Homer of human nature. Henry Fielding; so called by Byron. (1707—1768.) The Scottish Homer. William Wilkie, author of The Epigoniad (1721—1772).
Homer a Cure for the Ague
It was an old superstition that if the fourth book of the Iliad was laid under the head of a patient suffering from quartan ague it would cure him at once. Serenus Sammonicus, preceptor of Gordian and a noted physician, vouchee for this remedy.
“Mæoniæ Iliados quartum suppone timenti.” —
Præcepta de Medicina, 50.
The subject of this book is as follows: While Agamemnon adjudges that Menelaos is the winner, and that the Trojans were bound tc yield, according to their compact, Pandaros draws his bow, wounds Menelaos, and the battle becomes general. The reason why this book was selected is because it contains the cure of Menelaos by Machaon, “a son of Æsculapius.”
Homer in a Nutshell
Cicero says that he himself saw Homer's Iliad enclosed in a nutshell.
Homer Sometimes Nods
“Quandoque bonus dormitat Homerus.”
Horace: Ars Poetica (359)
Dorotheus spent his whole life trying to elucidate one single word of Homer. Zoilos (3 syl.), the grammarian, was called “Homer's Scourge" (Homeromastix, because he assailed the Iliad and Odyssey with merciless severity.
As some deny that Shakespeare is the author of the plays which are generally ascribed to him, so Wolf, a
German critic (1759—1824), in his Prolegomena ad Homerum, denies that Homer was the author of the Iliad and Odyssey.
Hexameter verse; so called because Homer adopted it in his two great epics. (See Hexameter Verse.)
(5 syl.). The plan of curing a disease by very minute doses of a medicine which would in healthy persons produce the very same disease. The principle of vaccination is a sort of homoeopathy, only it is producing in a healthy person a mitigated form of the disease guarded against. You impart a mild form of small—pox to prevent the patient from taking the virulent disease. (Greek, homoios pathos, like disease.) (See Hahnemann.)
“Tut, man! one fire burns out another's burning!
One pain is lessened by another's anguish ... Take thou some new infection to the eye,
And the rank poison of the old will die.”
Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet, i.2.
(h silent). Honest Jack Bannister. An actor in London for thirtysix years. (1760—1836.)
“After his retirement he was once accosted by Sir George Rose, when Honest Jack, being on the other side of the street, cried out, `Stop a moment. Sir George, and I will come over to you.' `No, no, replied his friend, `I never yet made you cross, and will not begin now.” — Grinsted: Relics of Genius.
General Mouk (1608—1670).
(An). The oldest allusion to this strange expression is the epigram on St. Ives (1251—1303), of whom Dom Lobineau says: “Il distribuait avec une sainte profusion aux pauvres les revenus de son bénéfice et ccux de son patrimonie, qui etaient dé 60 de rente, alors une somme très notable, particulièrement en Basse Bretagne. ” (Lives of the Saints of Great Britain.)
“Sanctus Yvo erat Brito,
Advocatus, et non latro.
Res miranda populo.”
St. Ives was of the land of beef, An advocate, and not a thief; A stretch on popular belief. E.C.B. The phrase was facetiously applied by some wag to Sir John Strange, Master of the Rolls, who died, at the age of fifty—eight, in 1754.
“Here lies an honest lawyer, that is Strange.”
Of course this line forms no part of the inscription in Leyton churchyard, Essex, where Sir John was buried.
There is a rhododendron about Trebizond, the flowers of which the bees are fond of, but if anyone eats the honey he becomes mad, (Tourneford.)
contains no portion of honey. Some is made from the finest yellow soap; and some is a mixture of palm—oil soap, olive—soap, and curdsoap. It is scented with oil of verbena, rose—geranium, ginger—grass, bergamot, etc.
Honey better than Vinegar
“On prend plus de mouches avec du miel, qu'avcc du vinaigre.” “Plus fait douceur que violence.” “It faut avoir mauvaise bête par douccur.”
It is better to be preserved in vinegar than to rot in honey. It is better to suffer affliction if thereby the heart is brought to God, than to lose body and soul by worldly indulgences.
The hexagonal shape of the bees' cells is generally ascribed to the instinctive skill of the bee, but is simply the ordinary result of mechanical laws. Solitary bees always make circular cells; and without doubt those of hive bees are made cylindrical, but acquire their hexagonal form by mechanical pressure. Dr. Wollaston says all cylinders made of soft pliable materials become, hexagonal under such circumstances. The cells of trees are circular towards the extremity, but hexagonal in the centre of the substance; and the cellular membranes of all vegetables are hexagonal also. (See Ant.)
Will Honcycomb. A fine gentleman. One of the members of the imaginary club from which the Spectator issued.
A sweet substance found on lime—trees and some other plants. Bees and ants are fond of it. It is a curious misnomer, as it is the excretion of the aphis or vine—fretter. The way it is excreted is this: the ant beats with its antennae the abdomen of the aphis, which lifts up the part beaten, and excretes a limpid drop of seet juice called honeydew.
The month after marriage, or so much of it as is spent away from home; so called from the practice of the ancient Teutons of drinking honey—wine (hydromel) for thirty days after marriage. Attila, the Hun, indulged so freely in hydromel at his wedding—feast that he died.
“It was the custom of the higher order of the Teutons ... to drink mead or metheglin (a beverage made from honey) for thirty days after every wedding. From this comes the expression `to spend the honeymoon.' ” — W. Pulleyn: Etymological Compendium, 8, 9, p. 142.
A yea—nay type, illustrative of what Dr. Young says: “What is mere good nature but a fool?” (Goldsmith: The Good—natured Man. )
Those merchants who were alone permitted by the government of China to trade with China, till the restriction was abolished in 1842. The Chinese applied the word hong to the foreign factories situated at Canton.
Honi soit qui mal y pense (Evil be [to him] who thinks evil of this). The tradition is that Edward III. gave a grand court ball, and one of the ladies present was the beautiful Countess of Salisbury, whose garter of blue ribbon accidentally fell off. The king saw a significant smile among the guests, and gallantly came to the rescue. “Honi soit qui mal y pense ” (Shame to him who thinks shame of this accident), cried the monarch. Then, binding the ribbon round his own knee, he added, “I will bring it about that the proudest noble in the realm shall think it an honour to wear this band.” The incident determined him to abandon his plan of forming an order of the Round Table, and he formed instead the order of the “Garter.” (Tighe and Davis: Annals of
(h silent). A superior seigniory, on which other lordships or manors depend by the performance of customary services.
An affair of honour. A dispute to be settled by a duel. Duels were generally provoked by offences against the arbitrary rules of etiquette, courtesy, or feeling, called the “laws of honour;” and, as these offences were not recognisable in the law courts, they were settled by private combat.
Debts of honour. Debts contracted by betting, gambling, or verbal promise. As these debts cannot be enforced by law, but depend solely on good faith, they are called debts of honour.
Laws of honour. Certain arbitrary rules which the fashionable world tacitly admits; they wholly regard deportment, and have nothing to do with moral offences. Breaches of this code are punished by duels, expulsion from society, or suspension called “sending to Coventry” (q.v.).
Point of honour. An obligation which is binding because its violation would offend some conscientious scruple or notion of self—respect.
Word of honour. A gage which cannot be violated without placing the breaker of it beyond the pale of respectability and good society.
Honour and Glory Griffiths
Capt. Griffiths (in the reign of William IV.) was so called, because all his despatches were addressed “To their Honours and Glories at the Admiralty.”
Honour paid to Learning
Dionysius, King of Syracuse, wishing to see Plato, sent the finest galley in his kingdom royally equipped, and stored with every conceivable luxury to fetch him; and, on landing, the philosopher found the royal state carriage waiting to convey him to the palace
Ben Jonson, in 1619, made a journey from London to Scotland expressly to see William Drummond, the Scotch poet.
(h silent). Crushed by his honours. The allusion is to the Roman damsel who agreed to open the gates of Rome to King Tatius, provided his soldiers would give her the ornaments which they wore on their arms. As they entered they threw their shields on her and crushed her, saying as they did so, “These are the ornaments worn by Sabines on their arms.” Roman story says the maid was named Tarpeia, and that she was the daughter of Tarpeius, the governor of the citadel.
Draco, the Athenian legislator, was crushed to death in the theatre of Ægina, by the number of caps and cloaks showered on him by the audience, as a mark of their high appreciation of his merits. Elagabalus, the Roman Emperor, invited the leading men of Rome to a banquet, and, under the pretence of showing them honour, rained roses upon them. But the shower continued till they were all buried and smothered by the flowers.
Two or four by honours. A term in whist. If two “partners” hold three court cards, they score two points; if they hold four court cards, they score four points. These are honour points, or points not won by the merit of play, but by courtesy and laws of honour. The phrases mean, “I score or claim two points by right of honours,” and “I score or claim four points by right of four court or honour cards.”
Honours of War
The privilege allowed to an honoured enemy, on capitulation, of being permitted to retain their offensive arms. This is the highest honour a victor can pay a vanquished foe. Sometimes the soldiers so honoured are required to pile arms; in other cases they are allowed to march with all their arms, drums beating, and colours flying.
`Tis not the hood that makes the monk (Cucullus non facit monachum). We must not be deceived by appearances, or take for granted that things and persons are what they seem to be.
“They should be good men; their affairs are righteous;
But all hoods make not monks.”
Shakespeare: Henry VIII., iii. 1.
(Robin). Introduced by Sir Walter Scott in Ivanhoe. (See Robin.)
BLACK silk without lining: — M.A. Cambridge, non Regius (abolished 1858); B.D. Cambridge, Oxford, Dublin.
Black stuff, with broad white fur trimming: — B.A. or LL.B. Cambridge. Black corded silk, with narrow white fur trimming: — B.A. Oxford. Black corded silk, with narrow white fur trimming: — B.A. Oxford. Black silk hood, with lining: emdash With white silk lining, M.A. Cambridge; with dark red silk lining, M.A. Oxford; with dark blue silk lining, Dublin; with russet—brown lining, M.A. London.
BLUE silk hood, with white fur trimming, B.C.L. Oxford.
BROWN (silk or stuff) hood, edged with russet—brown, B.A. London. SCARLET cloth hood: — Lined with crimson silk, D.C.L. Oxford; lined with pink silk, D.C.L. Dublin; lined with pink silk, D.D. Cambridge; lined with black silk, D.D. Oxford; lined with light cherry—coloured silk,
Scarlet cash mere hood: — Lined with silk, D.D. Dublin: — Lined with white silk, D.C.L. Durham. VIOLET hoods are St. Andrew's.
The longer the hood the higher the degree; thus, a bachelor's hood only reaches to the thighs, but a doctor's hood reaches to the heels.
(American slang) A Californian rough.
Now called “Blindman's Buff.”
“What devil was't
That thus bath cozened you at hoodman blind?” Shakespeare: Hamlet, iii. 4.
He is off the hooks. Done for, laid on the shelf, superseded, dead. The bent pieces of iron on which the hinges of a gate rest and turn are called hooks; if a gate is off the hooks it is in a bad way, and cannot readily be opened and shut.
On one's own hook. On one's own responsibility or account. An angler's phrase. To fish with a golden hook. To give bribes. “Pêcher avec un hamegon d'or. ” Risk a sprat to catch a mackerel. To buy fish, and pretend to have caught it.
With a hook at the end. My assent is given with a hook at the end means not intended to be kept. In some parts of Germany, even to the present day, when a witness swears falsely, he crooks one finger into a sort of hook, and this is supposed sufficient to avert the sin of perjury. It is a crooked oath, or an oath “with a hook at the end.” (See Over The Left.)
N.B. Ringing the bells backwards, and repeating the Lord's Prayer backwards belong to the same class of superstitions.
Take your hook; Sling your hook. Be off! Be off about your business! This expression amongst woodmen, reapers, etc., is equivalent to the military one, “Pack up your tatters and follow the drum.”
Hook or Crook
(By). Either rightfully or wrongfully; in one way or another. Formerly the poor of a manor were allowed to go into the forests with a hook and crook to get wood. What they could not reach they might pull down with their crook. The French equivalent is “A droit ou à tort, ” or “De bric et de broc. ” Either with the thief's hook or the bishop's crook. Mrs. S. C. Hall, in her Ireland (vol. ii. p. 149 n.), states, as the origin of this phrase, that when the ships of Strongbow were entering Waterford harbour he noticed a tower on one side and a church on the other. Inquiring their names, he was told it was the “Tower of Hook” and the “Church of Crook.” Then said he, “We must take the town by Hook and by Crook.” There is no such person as St. Crook mentioned by the Bollandists.
“Dymnure Wood was ever open and common to the ... inhabitants of Bodmin ... to bear away upon their backs a burden of lop, crop, hook, crook, and bag wood.” — Bodmin Register
“The which his sire had scrapt by hooke or crooke.”
Spenser: Faerie Queene, book v. ii. line 20.
(See Walker .)
Drinking pots at one time were made with hoops, that when two or more drank from the same tankard no one of them should take more than his share. Jack Cade promises his followers that “seven half—penny loaves shall be sold for a penny; the three—hooped pot shall have ten hoops; and I will make it felony to drink small beer.” (Shakespeare: 2 Henry VI., iv. 2.)
(Upupa Epops). A small crested bird revered by all the ancient Egyptains, and placed on the sceptre of Horus, to symbolise joy and filial affection. (Latin upupa, the hoopoe.)
The plant, called by Tusser “Robin Hop.” (Danish hop.) To hop on one leg is the Anglo—Saxon hopetan or hoppian.
“Get into thy hopyard, for now it is time
To teach Robin Hop on his pole how to climb.” Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry, xli. 17.
Thick as hops. Very numerous; very compact.
“And thousand other things as thicke as hops.”
Taylor the Water Poet (1630).
Hop—o'—my—Thumb A nix, the same as the German daumling, the French le petit pouce, and the Scotch Tom—a—lin (or Tamlane). Tom Thumb in the wellknown nursery tale is quite another character. He was the son of peasants, knighted by King Arthur, and killed by a spider.
Several dwarfs have assumed the name of Tom Thumb. (See Dwarfs.)
“You Stump—o'—the—Gutter, you Hop—o'—my—Thumb,
Your husband must from Lilliput come.”
Kane O'Hara: Midas.
“Plaine friend. Hop—o'—my—Thumb, know you who we are?” — Taming of the Shrew (1594).
To hop the twig. To run away from one's creditors, as a bird eludes a fowler, “hopping from spray to spray.” Also to die. The same idea as that above. There are numerous phrases to express the cessation of life; for example, “To kick the bucket” (q.v.; “To lay down one's knife and fork;” “Pegging out” (from the game of cribbage); “To be snuffed out” (like a candle); “He has given in;” “To throw up the sponge” (q.v.; “To fall asleep;” “To enter Charon's boat” (See Charon); “To join the majority;” “To cave in;” a common Scripture phrase is “To give up the ghost.”
Before Alexander set out for Asia he divided his kingdom among his friends. “My lord,” said Perdiccas, “what have you left for, yourself?” “Hope,” replied Alexander. Whereupon Perdiccas rejoined, “If hope is enough for Alexander, it is enough for Perdiccas,” and declined to accept any bounty from the king.
The Bard of Hope. Thomas Campbell (1777—1844), the author of The Pleasures of Hope. The entire profits on this poem were 900.
The Cape of Good Hope. (See Storms.)
The companion of Christian after the death of Faithful. (Bunyan: Pilgrim's Progress.)
A puritanical character drawn by Beaumont and Fletcher.
“ `Well,' said Wildrake, `I think I can make a “Hope—on—High Bomby" as well as thou canst.” ” — Sir Walter Scott: Woodstock, c. vii.
(Matthew), of Manningtree, Essex, the witch—finder of the associated counties of Essex, Suffolk, Norfolk, and Huntingdonshire. In one year he hanged sixty reputed witches in Essex alone. Dr. Z. Grey says that between three and four thousand persons suffered death for witchcraft between 1643 and 1661.
Nicholas Hopkins. A Carthusian friar, confessor of the Duke of Buckingham, who prophesied “that neither the king (Henry VIII.) nor his heirs should prosper, but that the Duke of Buckingham should govern England.
“1 Gent. That devil—monk
Hopkins that made this mischief. 2 Gent. That was he
That fed him with his prophecies.”
Shakespeare: Henry VIII., ii. 1.
Those who adopt the theological opinions of Dr. Samuel Hopkins, of Connecticut. These sectarians hold most of the Calvinistic doctrines, but entirely reject the doctrines of imputed sin and imputed righteousness. The speciality of the system is that true holiness consists in disinterested benevolence, and that all sin is selfishness.
A lame person; so called from St. Giles, the tutelar saint of cripples, who was himself lame.
Hopton When in doubt, kill Hopton. Sir Ralph Hopton was a Royalist general. During the Civil Wars we read that Hopton was killed over and over again; thus, in Diurnal Occurrences, Dec. 5th, 1642, we read, “It was likewise this day reported that Sir Ralph Hopton is either dead or dangerously sicke.” Five months later we read in Special Passages, May 6th, 1643, of Hopton's death after a fight on Roborough Down, in Devonshire. And again, May 15th, 1643, we read of his death in A True Relation of the Proceedings of the Cornish Forces.
The Roman lyric poet.
Horaces of England. George, Duke of Buckingham, preposterously declared Cowley to be the Pindar, Horace, and Virgil of England (1618—1667). Ben Jonson is invariably called Horace by Dekker.
Horaces of France. Jean Macrinus or Salmon (1490—1557); Pierre Jean de Beranger, the French Burns (1780—1857).
Horaces of Spain. The brothers Argensola, whose Christian names were Lupercio and Bartolme.
(An). Book i. Ode iv. In alternate lines, one of seventeen syllables and the other of eleven, thus:
Below is a translation of the first four lines in this Horatian metre (rhyming):
Now that the winter is past, blithe spring to the balmy fields inviteth,
And lo! from the dry sands men their keels are hauling;
Cattle no longer their stalls affect, nor the hind his hearth delighteth, Nor deadly Frost spreads over meads her palling. E. C. B.
See Alcaic, Asclepiadic, Choriambic, Sapphic, etc. (See also Hexameters, and Hexameters And Pentameters.)
Hamlet's intimate friend. (Shakespeare: Hamlet.)
Logistilla gave Astolpho at parting a horn that had the virtue to appal and put to flight the boldest knight or most savage beast. (Ariosto: Orlando Furioso, book viii.)
Astolpho's horn. (See above.) Cape Horn. So named by Schouten, a Dutch mariner, who first doubled it. He was a native of Hoorn, in north Holland, and named the cape after his native place.
Drinking horn. Drinking cups used to be made of the rhinoceros's horn, from an Oriental belief that “it sweats at the approach of poison.” (Calmet: Biblical Dictionary.)
King Horn. The hero of a French metrical romance, and the original of our Horne Childe, generally called The Geste of Kyng Horn. The nominal author of the French romance is Mestre Thomas. Dr. Percy ascribes the English romance of King Horne to the twelfth century, but this is probably a century too early (See Ritson's Ancient Romances.)
My horn hath He exalted (l Sam. ii. 10; Ps. lxxxix. 24, etc.). Mr. Buckingham says of a Tyrian lady, “She wore on her head a hollow silver horn, rearing itself upwards obliquely from the forehead. It was some four inches in diameter at the root, and pointed at its extremity. This peculiarity reminded me forcibly of the expression of the Psalmist, `Lift not up your horn on high: speak not with a stiff neck. All the horns of the wicked also will I cut off; but the horns of the righteous shall be exalted' (Ps. lxxv. 5, 10).” Bruce found in Abyssinia the silver horns of warriors and distinguished men. In the reign of Henry V. the “horned head—gear” was introduced into England, and from the effigy of Beatrice, Countess of Arundel, at Arundel church, who is represented with two horns outspread to a great extent, we may infer that the length of the head—horn, like the length of the shoe—point in the reign of Henry VI., etc., marked the degree of rank. “To cut off” such horns would be to degrade; and to exalt or extend such horns would be to add honour and dignity to the wearer.
To draw in one's horns. To retract, or mitigate, a pronounced opinion; to restrain pride. In French, “Rentrer les cornes. ” The allusion is to the snail.
To put to the horn. To denounce as a rebel, or pronounce a person an outlaw, for not answering to a
summons. In Scotland the messenger—at—arms goes to the Cross of Edinburgh and gives three blasts with a horn before he heralds the judgment of outlawry.
“A king's messenger must give three blasts with his horn, by which the person is understood to be proclaimed rebel to the king for contempt of his authority.” — Erskine: Institutes, book
To wear the horns. to be a cuckold. In the rutting season, the stags associate with the fawns: one stag selects several females, who constitute his harem, till another stag comes who contests the price with him. If beaten in the combat, he yields up his harem to the victor, and is without associates till he finds a stag feebler than himself, who is made to submit to similar terms. As stags are horned, and made cuckolds of by their fellows, the application is palpable. (See Cornette.)
The alphabet—book, which was a thin board of oak about nine inches long and five or six wide, on which was printed the alphabet, the nine digits, and sometimes the Lord's Prayer. It had a handle, and was covered in front with a sheet of thin horn to prevent its being soiled; the backboard was ornamented with a rude sketch of St. George and the Dragon. The board and its horn cover were held together by a narrow frame or border of brass. (See Crisscross Row.)
“Thee will I sing, in comely wainscoat bound,
And golden verge inclosing thee around;
The faithful horn before, from age to age
Preserving thy invulnerable page;
Behind, thy patron saint in armour shines,
With sword and lance to guard the sacred lines ... Th' instructive handle's at the bottom fixed,
Lest wrangling critics should pervert the text.” Tickell: The Horn Book.
“Their books of stature small they took in hand
Which with pellucid horn securë are,
To save from finger wet the letters fair.”
One of the two gates of “Dreams;” the other is of ivory. Visions which issue from the former come true. This whim depends upon two Greek puns; the Greek for horn is keras, and the verb krano or karanoo means “to bring to an issue,” “to fulfil; so again elephas is ivory, and the verb elephairo means “to cheat,” “to deceive.” The verb kraino, however, is derived from kra, “the head,” and means “to bring to a head;” and the verb elephairo is akin to elachus, “small.”
Anchises dismisses Æneas through the ivory gate, on quitting the infernal regions, to indicate the unreality of his vision.
“Sunt geminæ somini portæ, quarum altera fertur
Cornea, qua veris facilis datur exitus umbris; Altera candenti perfecta nitens elephanto;
Sed falsa ad coelum mittunt insomnia Manë.”
Virgil: Æneid, vi. 894, etc.
Horn of Fidelity
Morgan la Faye sent a horn to King Arthur, which had the following “virtue”: — No lady could drink out of it who was not “to her husband true;” all others who attempted to drink were sure to spill what it contained. This horn was carried to King Marke, and “his queene with a hundred ladies more” tried the
experiment, but only four managed to “drinke cleane.” Ariosto's enchanted cup possessed a similar spell. (See Chastity.)
Horn of Plenty
[Cornu—copia ]. Emblem of plenty.
Ceres is drawn with a ram's horn in her left arm, filled with fruits and flowers. Sometimes they are being poured on the earth from “the full horn,” and sometimes they are held in it as in a basket. Diodorus (iii. 68) says the horn is one from the head of the goat by which Jupiter was suckled. He explains the fable thus: “In Libya,” he says, “there is a strip of land shaped like a horn, bestowed by King Ammon on his bride Amalthæa, who nursed Jupiter with goat's milk.
“When Amalthe'a's horn
O'er hill and dale the rose—crowned Flora pours. And scatters corn and wine, and fruits and flowers.” Camocns: Lusiad, book ii.
Horn of Power
When Tamugin assumed the title of Ghengis Khan, he commanded that a white horn should be thenceforward the standard of his troops. So the great Mogul “lifted up his horn on high,” and was exalted to great power.
Horn of the Son of Oil
(The) (Isa. v. 1). The son of oil means Syria, famous for its olives and its olive oil, and the horn of Syria means the strip of land called Syria, which has the sea bounding it on the west and the desert on the east.
Horn with Horn
or Horn under Horn. The promiscuous feeding of bulls and cows, or, in fact, all horned beasts that are allowed to run together on the same common.
Horns of a Dilemma
A difficulty of such a nature that whatever way you attack it you encounter an equal amount of disagreeables. Macbeth, after the murder of Duncan, was in a strait between two evils. If he allowed Banquo to live, he had reason to believe that Banquo would supplant him; if, on the other hand, he resolved to keep the crown for which “he had 'filed his hands,” he must “step further in blood,” and cut Banquo off.
Lemma is something that has been proved, and being so is assumed as an axiom. It is from the Greek word lambano (I assume or take for granted). Di—lemma is a double lemma, or two—edged sword which strikes either way. The horns of a dilemma is a figure of speech taken from a bull, which tosses, with either of his horns.
“Teach me to plead,” said a young rhetorician to a sophist, “and I will pay you when I gain a cause.” The master sued for payment at once, and the scholar pleaded, “If I gain my cause you must pay me, and if I lose it I am not bound to pay you by the terms of our contract.” The master pleaded, “If you gain you must pay me by the terms of the agreement, and if you lose the court will compel you to pay me.”
Horns of Moses' Face
This is a mere blunder. The Hebrew karan means “to shoot out beams of light,” but has by mistake been translated in some versions “to wear horns.” Thus Moses is conventionally represented with horns. “Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone” (Exod. xxxiv. 29); compare 2 Cor. iii. 7—13: “The children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance.”
Horns of the Altar
(To the). Usque ad aras amicus. Your friend even to the horns of the altar — i.e. through thick and thin. In swearing, the ancient Romans held the horns of the altar, and one who did so in testimony of friendship could not break his oath without calling on himself the vengeance of the angry gods.
I'll chance it, as old Horne did his neck. The reference is to Horne, a clergyman of Notts, who committed murder, but contrived to escape to the Continent. After several years of absence, he returned to England, and when told of the risk he ran, he replied, “I'll chance it.” He did chance it; but being apprehended, he was tried, condemned, and executed. (The Newgate Calendar.)
One who blows the hunting—horn; a huntsman or master of the hounds. Little Jack Horner was master of the Abbot of Glastonbury's hounds.
(Josh. xxiv. 12). “And I sent the hornet before you, which drave them out from before you, even the two kings of the Amorites.” The Egyptian standard was a hornet, and in this passage, “I sent the hornet before you,” the word hornet must be taken to mean the Egyptian army.
To poke your head into a hornet's nest. To bring a hornet's nest about your ears. To get into trouble by meddling and making. The bear is very fond of honey, and often gets stung by poking its snout by mistake into a hornet's nest in search of its favourite dainty.
(2 syl.). Auld Hornie. The devil, so called in Scotland. The allusien is to the horns with which Satan is generally represented. (See Fairy.)
(2 syl.). The dance is so called because it used to be danced in the west of England to the pib—corn or hornpipe, an instrument consisting of a pipe each end of which was made of horn.
The art of measuring time; or constructing instruments to indicate time, i.e. clocks and watches.
(3 syl.). The scheme of the twelve houses by which astrologers tell your fortune. The word means the “hour—scrutinised,” because it is the hour of birth only which is examined in these star—maps.
(The). Delirium tremens.
Hors de Combat
(French). Out of battle. Incapable of taking any further part in the fight.
The fifteen points of a good horse:
“A good horse sholde have three propyrtees of a man, three of a woman, three of a foxe, three of a haare, and three of an asse.
“Of a man. Bolde, prowde, and hardye.
“Of a woman. Fayre—breasted, faire of heere, and easy to move.
“Of a foxe. A fair taylle, short eers, with a good trotte.
“Of a haare. A grate eye, a dry head, and well rennynge.
“Of an asse. A bygge chynn, a flat legge, and a good hoof.” — Wynkyn de Worde (1496).
Creator of the horse. According to classical mythology, Poseidon [Neptune] created the horse. When the goddess of Wisdom disputed with the Sea—god which of them should give name to Athens, the gods decided that it should be called by the name of that deity which bestowed on man the most useful boon. Athene (the goddess of Wisdom) created the olive tree, but Poseidon or Neptune created the horse. The vote was given in favour of the olive—tree, and the city called Athens.
It was a remarkable judgment, but it must be remembered that an olive branch was the symbol of peace, and was also the highest prize of the victor in the Olympic games. The horse, on the other hand, was the symbol of war, and peace is certainly to be preferred to war.
Horses (four—in—hand). The first person that drove a four—in—hand was Erichthonius, according to Virgil:
“Primus Erichthonius currus et quatuor ausus
Jungere equos.” Georg. iii. 113.
(Erichthon was the first who dared command A chariot yoked with horses four in hand.)
A horse wins a kingdom. On the death of Smerdis, the several competitors for the throne of Persia agreed that he should be king whose horse neighed first when they met on the day following. The groom of Darius showed his horse a mare on the place appointed, and immediately it arrived at the spot on the following day the horse began to neigh, and won the crown for its master.
Horse (in the Catacombs). Emblem of the swiftness of life. Sometimes a palm—wreath is placed above its head to denote that “the race is not to the swift.”
(in Christian art). Emblem of courage and generosity. The attribute of St. Martin, St. Maurice, St. George, and St. Victor, all of whom are represented on horseback. St. Léon is represented on horseback, in pontifical robes, blessing the people.
Brazen horse. (See Cambuscan; see also Barbed Steed, Dobbin.)
Flesh—eating horses. The horses of Diomed, Tyrant of Thrace (not Diomede, son of Tydeus); he fed his horses on the strangers who visited his kingdom. Hercule vanquished the tyrant, and gave the carcase to the horses to eat.
Like to the Thracian tyrant who, they say,
Unto his horses gave his guests for meat,
Till he himself was made their greedy prey,
And torn to pieces by Alcides great.”
Spenser: Faërie Queene, book v., canto 8.
Wooden horse. (See Wooden.)
Horse, in the British Army:
Elliott's Light Horse. The 15th Hussars of the British Army; so called from Colonel Elliott. They are now called the “King's Hussars.”
Paget's Irregular Horse. The 4th Hussars; so called from their loose drill, after their return from India in 1839. Now called “The Queen's Hussars.”
The Black Horse. The 7th Dragoon Guards, or Princess Royal's Dragoon Guards; called “black” from its facings.
The Blue Horse. the 4th Dragoon Guards; called “blue” from their facings. The Green Horse or “The Green Dragoon Guards.” The 5th Dragoon Guards; called “green” from their facings. “The Princess Charlotte of Wales's Dragoon Guards.”
The Royal Horse Guards (called, in 1690, Oxford Blues from their blue facings) are the three heavy cavalry regiments of the Household Brigade, first raised in 1661.
The White Horse. The old 8th Foot; now called “The King's” (Liverpool Regiment); called the “White Horse” from one of the badges — a white horse within the garter.
The public—house sign. (1) The White Horse. The standard of the Saxons, and therefore impressed on hop pockets and bags as the ensign of Kent. On Uffington Hill, Berks, there is formed in the chalk an enormous white horse, supposed to have been cut there after the battle in which Ethelred and Alfred defeated the Danes (871). This rude ensign is about 374 feet long, and 1,000 feet above the sea—level. It may be seen twelve miles off.
(2) The galloping white horse is the device of the house of Hanover.
(3) The rampant white horse. The device of the house of Savoy, descended from the Saxons.
HORSFS FAMOUS IN HISTORY AND FABLE:
Abakur (Celtic). One of the horses of Sunna. The word means the “hot one.” (Scandinavian mythology. Abaster (Greek). One of the horses of Pluto. The word means “away from the stars” or “deprived of the light of day.”
Abatos (Greek). One of the horses of Pluto. The word means “inaccessible,” and refers to the infernal realm. Abraxas (Greek). One of the horses of Aurora. The letters of this word in Greek make up 365, the number of days in the year.
Actæ'on (Greek, “effulgence"). One of the horses of the Sun. Æthon (Greek, “fiery red"). One of the horses of the Sun.
A'eton. One of the horses of Pluto Greek, “swift as an eagle.” Agnes. (See below, Black Agnes.
Alborak. (See Borak.
Alfana. Gradasso's horse. The word means “a mare.” (Orlando Furioso. Aligero Clavileno. The “wooden—pin wing—horse” which Don Quixote and his squire mounted to achieve the deliverance of Dolorida and her companions.
Alsvidur. One of the horses of Sunna. The word means “all scorching.” (Scandinavian mythology. Amethe'a (Greek). One of the horses of the Sun. The word means “no loiterer.”
Aquiline (3 syl.). Raymond's steed, bred on the banks of the Tagus. The word means “like an eagle.” (Tasso: Jerusalem Delivered.
Arion (Greek). Hercules' horse, given to Adrastos. The horse of Neptune, brought out of the earth by striking it with his trident; its right feet were those of a human creature, it spoke with a human voice, and ran with incredible swiftness. The word means “martial,” i.e. “war—horse.”
Arundel. The horse of Bevis of Southampton. The word means “swift as a swallow.” (French, hirondelle, “a swallow.”)
Arvakur. One of the horses of Sunna. The word means “splendid.” (Scandinavian mythology. Aslo. One of the horses of Sunna. (Scandinavian mythology.
`Babieca (Spanish, “a simpleton"). The Cid's horse. He survived his master two years and a half, during which time no one was allowed to mount him; and when he died he was buried before the gate of the monastery at Valencia, and two elms were planted to mark the site. The horse was so called because, when
Rodrigo in his youth was given the choice of a horse, he passed by the most esteemed ones and selected a rough colt; whereupon his godfather called the lad babiéca (a dolt), and Rodrigo transferred the appellation to his horse.
Bajardo. Rinaldo's horse, of a bright bay colour, once the property of Amadis of Gaul. It was found by Malagigi, the wizard, in a cave guarded by a dragon, which the wizard slew. According to tradition, it is still alive, but flees at the approach of man, so that no one can ever hope to catch him. The word means of a “bay colour.” (Orlando Furioso.
Balios (Greek, “swift"). One of the horses given by Neptune to Peleus. It afterwards belonged to Achilles. Like Xanthos, its sire was the West—wind, and its dam Swift—foot the harpy.
Bayard. The horse of the four sons of Aymon, which grew larger or smaller as one or more of the four sons mounted it. According to tradition, one of the foot—prints may still be seen in the forest of Soignes, and another on a rock near Dinant. The word means “bright bay colour.”
Also the horse of FitzJames.
“Stand, Bayard, stand! The steed obeyed
With arching neck, and bended head,
And glaring eye, and quivering ear,
As if he loved his lord to hear.”
Sir W. Scott: Lady of the Lake, x viii.
Barbary. (See Roan Barbary. Bevis. The horse of Lord Marmion. The word is Norse, and means “swift.” (Sir W. Scott. Black Agnes. The palfrey of Mary Queen of Scots, given her by her brother Moray, and named after Agnes of Dunbar, a countess in her own right.
Black Bess. The famous mare ridden by the highwayman Dick Turpin, which, tradition says, carried him from London to York.
Black Saladin. Warwick's famous horse, which was coal—black. It sire was Malech, and, according to tradition, when the race of Malech failed, the race of Warwick would fail also. And it was so.
Borak (Al). The “horse” which conveyed Mahomet from earth to the seventh heaven. It was milk—white, had the wings of an eagle, and a human face, with horse's cheeks. Every pace she took was equal to the farthest range of human sight. The word is Arabic for “the lightning.”
Brigadore (3 syl.) or Brigliadore [Bril—yar—dore]. Sir Guyon's horse, which had a distinguishing black spot in its mouth, like a horse—shoe in shape. (Spenser: Faërie Queene, v. 2.)
Brigliadoro [Bril—ya—doro]. Orlando's famous charger, second only to Bayardo in swiftness and wonderful powers. The word means “golden—bridle.” (Orlando Furioso, etc.)
Bronte (2 syl.). One of the horses of the Sun. The word means “thunder.” Bronzomarle (3 syl.). The horse of Sir Launcelot Greaves. The word means “a mettlesome sorrel.” Brown Hal. A model pacing stallion.
Bucephalos (Greek). The celebrated charger of Alexander the Great. Alexander was the only person who could mount him, and he always knelt down to take up his master. He was thirty years old at death, and Alexander built a city for his mausoleum, which he called Bucephala. The word means “ox—head.”
Capilet (Grey). The horse of Sir Andrew Aguecheek. (Shakespeare: Twelfth Night, iii. 4.) A capilet or capulet is a small wen on the horse's hock.
Carman. The Chevalier Bayard's horse, given him by the Duke of Lorrain. It was a Persian horse from Kerman or Carmen (Laristan).
Celer. The horse of the Roman Emperor Verus. It was fed on almonds and raisins, covered with royal purple, and stalled in the imperial palace. (Latin for “swift.”)
Cerus. The horse of Adrastos, swifter than the wind (Pausanias). The word means “fit.” Cesar. A model Percheron stallion.
Clavileno. (See Aligero. Comrade (2 syl.). Fortunio's fairy horse.
Copenhagen. Wellington's charger at Waterloo. It died in 1835 at the age of twenty—seven. Napoleon's horse was Marengo.
Curtal (Bay). The horse of Lord Lafeu. (Shakespeare: All's Well that Ends. Well, ii. 3.) The word means “cropped.”
Cut. The carrier's horse. (Shakespeare: 1 Henry IV., act ii. 1.) A familiar name of a horse. The word may be taken to mean either “castrated” or “cropped.”
Cyllaros (Greek). Named from Cylla, in Troas, a celebrated horse of Castor or of Pollux. Dapple. Sancho Panza's ass (in the History of Don Quixote de la Mancha, by Cervantes). So called from its colour.
Dinos (Greek). Diomed's horse. The word means “the marvel.” Dhuldul. The famous horse of Ali, son—in—law of Mahomet. Doomstead. The horse of the Norns or Fates. (Scandinavian mythology. Eoos (Greek, “dawn"). One of the horses of Aurora.
Erythreos (Greek, “red—producer"). One of the horses of the Sun. Ethon (Greek, “fiery") One of the horses of Hector.
Fadda. Mahomet's white mule. Ferrant d'Espagne. The horse of Oliver. The word means “the Spanish traveller.” Fiddle—back. Oliver Goldsmith's unfortunate pony.
Frontaletto. Sacripant's charger. The word means “little head.” (Ariosto: Orlando Furioso. Frontino or Frontin. Once called “Balisarda.” Rogero's or Rugiero's horse. The word means “little head.” (Ariosto: Orlando Furioso, etc.)
Galathe (3 syl.). One of Hector's horses. The word means “cream—coloured.” Giblas. A model German coach stallion.
Grane (2 syl.). Siegfried's horse, of marvellous swiftness. The word means “grey—coloured.” Grey Capilet. (See Capilet.
Grizzle. Dr. Syntax's horse, all skin and bone. The word means “grey—coloured.” Haïz'um. The horse of the archangel Gabriel. (Koran.
Harpagos (Greek, “one that carries off rapidly.”) One of the horses of Castor and Pollux. Hippocampes (4 syl.). One of Neptune's horses. It had only two legs, the hinder quarter being that of a dragon's tail or fish.
Honest Tom. A model shire stallion, 1105. Hrimfaxi. The horse of Night, from whose bit fall the “rime—drops” which every night bedew the earth [i.e. frostmane]. (Scandinavian mythology.
Ilderim. A model Arabian stallion.
Incitatus. The horse of the Roman Emperor Caligula, made priest and consul. It had an ivory manger, and drank wine out of a golden pail. The word means “spurred on.
Jenny Geddes (1 syl.). Robert Burns's mare. Kantaka. The white horse of Prince Gautama of India (Budda). Kelpy or Kelpie. The water—horse of fairy mythology. The word means “of the colour of kelp or sea—weed.” Kervela. A model French coach stallion, 1342.
Lampon (Greek, “the bright one"). One of the horses of Diomed. Lampos (Greek, “shining like a lamp"). One of the steeds of the Sun at noon. Lamri. King Arthur's mare. The word means “the curveter.”
Leiston. A model Suffolk stallion, 1415.
Leonatus. A model thoroughbred stallion.
Marengo. The white stallion which Napoleon rode at Waterloo. Its remains are now in the Museum of the United Services, London. It is represented in Vernet's picture of Napoleon Crossing the Alps. Wellington's horse was called Copenhagen.
Matchless of Londesborough. A model hackney stallion. Malech. (See Black Saladin.
Marocco. Banks's famous horse. Its shoes were of silver, and one of its exploits was to mount the steeple of
Molly. Sir Charles Napier's mare. It died at the age of 35. Nobbs. The steed of Dr. Dove of Doncaster. (Southey. Nonios. One of the horses of Pluto.
Orelia. The charger of Roderick, last of the Goths, noted for its speed and symmetry. (Southey. Pale Horse (The) on which Death rides. (Rev. vi. 8.)
Palo Alto. A model trotting stallion.
Passe Brewell. Sir Tristram's charger. (Hist. of Prince Arthur, ii. 68.) Pegasos. The winged horse of Apollo and the Muses. (Greek, “born near the pege or source of the ocean.”) Perseus rode him when he rescued Andromeda.
Phaeton (Greek, “the shining one"). One of the steeds of Aurora.
Phallas. The horse of Heraclios. The word means “stallion.” Phlegon (Greek, “the burning or blazing one"). One of the horses of the Noon—day Sun Phrenicos. The horse of Hiero, of Syracuse, that won the Olympic prize for single horses in the seventy—third Olympiad. It means “intelligent.”
Podarge (3 syl.). One of the horses of Hector. The word means “swift—foot.” Prince Royal. A model Belgian stallion.
Puroeis [pu'—ro—ice]. One of the horses of the Noon—day Sun. (Greek, “fiery hot.”) Rabicano or Rabican. Argali'a's horse in Orlando Innamorato, and Astolpho's horse in Orlando Furioso. Its dam was Fire, its sire Wind; it fed on unearthly food. The word means a horse with a “dark tail but with some white hairs.”
“Rabicano (adj.), que se applica al caballo que tiene algunas cerdas blaneas in la cola.” — Salva: Spanish Dictionary.
Reksh. Rustem's horse.
Rimfaxi. (See Hrimfaxi. Roan Barbary. The favourite horse of King Richard II.
“When Bolingbroke rode on Roan Barbary,
That horse that thou so often hast bestrid.”
Shakespeare: Richard II., v. 5.
Ronald. Lord Cardigan's thoroughbred chestnut, with white stockings on the near hind and fore feet. It carried him through the Balaclava Charge.
Rosabelle (3 syl.). The favourite palfrey of Mary Queen of Scots. Rosinante (4 syl.). Don Quixote's horse, all skin and bone. The word means “formerly a hack.” Rossignol. The palfrey of Madame Châtelet of Cirey, the lady with whom Voltaire resided for ten years. Royalty. A model Cleveland bay stallion.
Saladin. (See Black Saladin. Savoy. The favourite black horse of Charles VIII. of France; so called from the Duke of Savoy who gave it him. It had but one eye, and “was mean in stature.”
Shibdiz. The Persian Bucephalos, fleeter than the wind. It was the charger of Chosroes II. of Persia. Skinfaxi. The steed which draws the car of day. The word means “shining mane.” (Scandinavian mythology. Sleipnir (Slipeneer). Odin's grey horse, which had eight legs and could traverse either land or sea. The horse typifies the wind which blows over land and water from eight principal points.
Sorrel. The horse of William III., which stumbled by catching his foot in a mole—heap. This accident ultimately caused the king's death. Sorrel, like Savoy, was blind of one eye, and “mean of stature.”
Spumador. King Arthur's horse. The word means “the foaming one.” Strymon. The horse immolated by Xerxes before he invaded Greece. Named from the river Strymon, in Thrace, from which vicinity it came.
Suleiman. The favourite charger of the Earl of Essex.
Tachebrune (q.v.). The horse of Ogier the Dane. Trebizond. The grey horse of Admiral Guarinos, one of the French knights taken at Roncesvalles. Vegliantino [Vail—yan—te'—no]. The famous steed of Orlando, called in French romance Veillantif, Orlando being called Roland. The word means “the little vigilant one.”
White Surrey. The favourite horse of King Richard III.
“Saddle White Surrey for the field to—morrow.”
Shakespeare: Richard III., v. 3.
Wzmakh. A model Orloff stallion.
Wooden Horse. (See Wooden.)
Xanthos. One of the horses of Achilles, who announced to the hero his approaching death when unjustly chidden by him. Its sire was Zephyros, and dam Podarge (q.v.). The word means “chestnut—coloured.”
(See Hunters And Runners.)
O'Donohue's white horse. Those waves which come on a windy day, crested with foam. The spirit of the hero reappears every May—day, and is seen gliding, to sweet but unearthly music, over the lakes of Killarney, on his favourite white horse. It is preceded by groups of young men and maidens, who fling spring—flowers in his path. (Derrick's Letters.
T. Moore has a poem on the subject in his Irish Melodies, No. vi.; it is entitled O'Donohue's Mistress, and refers to a tradition that a young and beautiful girl became enamoured of the visionary chieftain, and threw herself into the lake that he might carry her off for his bride.
IN PHRASE AND PROVERB.
A dark horse. A horse whose merits as a racer are not known to the general public. Flogging the dead horse. (See Flogging.)
Riding the wooden horse. A military punishment now discontinued. It was a flogging—stool. I will win the horse or lose the saddle. Neck or nothing; double or quits. Milton makes Satan say, “Better to reign in hell than serve in heaven.”
Latin: “Aut ter sex, aut tres tesserae.” (See Ter Sex.) “Au Caesar, aut nullus.” French: “Tout ou rien.” “Je veux risquer le tout pour le tout.”
They cannot draw (or set) horses together. They cannot agree together. The French say, “Nos chiens ne chassent pas ensemble. “
'Tis a Trojan horse (Latin proverb). A deception, a concealed danger. Thus Cicero says, “Intus, intus, inquam, est equus Trojanus ' (Pro Murena, 78). It was Epeos who made the Trojan horse.
'Tis a good horse that never stumbles. Everyone has his faults. Every black has its white, and every sweet its sour.
Latin: “Quandoque bonus dormitat Homerus.” Horace: Ars Poetica, 359.
“Humanum est errare.”
French: “Il n'y a bon cheval qui ne bronche,”or “Il n'est si bon cheval qui ne bronche.”
To get upon one's high horse. To give oneself airs. (See High Horse.) To set the cart before the horse. (See Cart.)
When the horse (or steed) is stolen, lock the stable door. The French say: “Apres la mort, le medicine. ” Somewhat similar is: “After beef, mustard.”
Working on the dead horse. (See Working.)
Coarse, acrid or pungent, inferior of its kind, rough. “Hoarse" is the Anglo—Saxon has.
The bean usually given to horses for food.
If a slip is cut off obliquely close to a joint, it will present a perfect miniature of a horse's hock and foot, shoe and nails. I have cut off numerous specimens. Probably this has given the name horse to the tree. (See Horse—Vetch.)
Having a long, coarse face.
Horse Latitudes A region of calms between 30 and 35 North; so called because ships laden with horses bound to America or the West Indies were often obliged to lighten their freight by casting the horses overboard when calmbound in these latitudes.
“Nothing could have been more delightful than our run into the horse latitudes. Cales and dead calms, terrible thunderstorms and breezes, fair one hour and foul the next, are the characteristics of these parallels. Numbers of horses were exported from the mother country, and it was reckoned that more of the animals died in these ... latitudes than in all the rest of the passage.” — Clark Russell: Lady Maud, vol. i. chap. vii. p. 186.
A coarse, vulgar laugh.
“He plays rough pranks ... and has a big horse—laugh in him when there is a top to be roasted.” — Carlyle: Frederick the Great, vol. i. book iv. chap. ii. p. 305.
(The). There is no such force. The Royal Marines are either artillery or infantry; there are no cavalry marines. To belong to the “Horse Marines” is a joke, meaning an awkward lubberly recruit.
Properly, one who makes up and supplies decorations for horses. A horse—soldier more fit for the toilet than the battle—field. The expression was first used by Rowley in his Ballads of Charitie, but Sir Walter Scott revived it.
“One comes in foreign trashery
Of tinkling chain and spur,
A walking haberdashery
Of feathers, lace, and fur;
In Rowley's antiquated phrase.
Horse milliner of modern days.”
Bridal of Triermain, ii. 3.
The pungent mint.
Similarly hoarse, having a rough voice from inflammation of the throat; gorse, a rough, prickly plant; goose—berry, a rough berry; goose—grass, the grass whose leaves are rough with hair, etc.
A measure of force. Watt estimated the “force” of a London dray—horse, working eight hours a day, at 33,000 foot—pounds (q.v. ) per minute. In calculating the horse—power of a steam—engine the following is the formula: —
times A times L times N33,000 deduct 10 for friction.
P, pressure (in lbs.) per sq. inch on the piston.
A, area (in inches) of the piston.
L, length (in feet) of the stroke.
N, number of strokes per minute.
As good a Protestant as Oliver Cromwell's horse. This expression arises in a comparison made by Cromwell respecting some person who had less discernment than his horse in the moot points of the Protestant controversy.
The pungent root.
Horse—shoes were at one time nailed up over doors as a protection against witches. Aubrey says, “Most houses at the West—end of London have a horse—shoe on the threshold.” In Monmouth Street there were seventeen in 1813, and seven so late as 1855.
“Straws laid across my path retard;
The horse—shoes nailed, each threshold's guard.” Gay: Fable xxiii. part 1.
It is lucky to pick up a horse—shoe. This is from the notion that a horse—shoe was a protection against witches. For the same reason our superstitious forefathers loved to nail a horse—shoe on their house—door. Lord Nelson had one nailed to the mast of the ship Victory.
There is a legend that the devil one day asked St. Dunstan, who was noted for his skill in shoeing horses, to shoe his “single hoof.” Dunstan, knowing who his customer was, tied him tightly to the wall and proceeded with his job, but purposely put the devil to so much pain that he roared for mercy. Dunstan at last consented to release his captive on condition that he would never enter a place where he saw a horse—shoe displayed.
The vetch which has pods shaped like a horse—shoe; sometimes called the “horse—shoe vetch.” (See Horse—Chestnut.)
Horse and his Rider
One of Æsop's fables, to show that nations crave the assistance of others when they are aggrieved, but become the tools or slaves of those who rendered them assistance. Thus the Celtic Britons asked aid of the Saxons, and the Danish Duchies of the Germans, but in both cases the rider made the horse a mere tool.
Horse—shoes and Nails
(for rent). In 1251 Walterle Brun, farrier, in the Strand, London, was to have a piece of land in the parish of St. Clements, to place there a forge, for which he was to pay the parish six
horse—shoes, which rent was paid to the Exchequer every year, and is still rendered to the Exchequer by the Lord Mayor and citizens of London, to whom subsequently the piece of ground was granted.
“In the reign of King Edward I. Walter Marescullus paid at the crucem lapideam six
horse—shoes with nails, for a certain building which he held of the king in capite opposite the stone cross.” — Blount: Ancient Tenures.
Light horsemen. Those who live by plundering ships. Heavy horsemen. Those who go aboard to clear ships.
(A). One who affects the manners and style of a jockey or horse—dealer.
(Latin, “a dry garden.”) A collection of plants dried and arranged in a book.
The Egyptian day—god, represented in hieroglyphics by a sparrow—hawk, which bird was sacred to him. He was son of Osiris and Isis, but his birth being premature he was weak in the lower limbs. As a child he is seen carried in his mother's arms, wearing the pschent or atf, and seated on a lotus—flower with his finger on his lips. As an adult he is represented hawk—headed. (Egyptian, har or hor, “the day” or “sun's path.”) Strictly speaking, Horus is the rising sun, Ra the noonday sun, and Osiris the setting sun. (Whence Greek and Latin hora, and our hour.)
Stockings, or stockings and breeches both in one. French, chausses. There were the haut de chausses and the bas de chausses.
“Their points being broken, down fell their hose.” — Shakespeare: 1 Henry IV., ii. 4.
From the Latin hospes (a guest), being originally an inn or house of entertainment for pilgrims; hence our words host (one who entertains), hospitality (the entertainment given), and hospitaller (the keeper
of the house). In process of time these receptacles were resorted to by the sick and infirm only, and the house of entertainment became an asylum for the sick and wounded. In 1399 Katherine de la Court held a “hospital” at the bottom of the court called Robert de Paris; after the lapse of four years her landlord died, and the tavern or hospital fell to his heirs Jehan de Chevreuse and William Cholet.
(The), in Post—office phraseology, is the department where loose packages are set to rights.
First applied to those whose duty it was to provide hospitium (lodging and entertainment) for pilgrims. The most noted institution of the kind was at Jerusalem, which gave its name to an order called the Knights Hospitallers. This order was first called that of the Knights of St. John at Jerusalem, which still exists; afterwards they were styled the Knights of Rhodes, and then Knights of Malta, because Rhodes and Malta were conferred on them by different monarchs.
“The first crusade ... led to the establishment of the Christian kingdom of Jerusalem, in 1099. The chief strength of the kingdom lay in the two orders of military monks — the Templars and the Hospitallers or Knights of St. John.” — Freeman: General Sketch. chap. xi.
A victim. The consecrated bread of the Eucharist is so called in the Latin Church because it is believed to be a real victim consisting of flesh, blood, and spirit, offered up in sacrifice. (Latin, hostia.) At the service known as the Benediction it is set up for adoration, and with it the blessing is given in a transparent vessel called a “monstrare.” (Latin, monstrare, to show.
Host. An army. At the breaking up of the Roman Empire the first duty of every subject was to follow his lord into the field, and the proclamation was banire in hostem (to order out against the foe), which soon came to signify “to order out for military service,” and hostem facere came to mean “to perform military service.” Hostis (military service) next came to mean the army that went against the foe, whence our word host.
“Like the leaves of the forest, when summer is green,
That host with their banners at sunset was seen;
Like the leaves of the forest, when autumn has blown,
That host on the morrow lay withered and strown.”
Byron: Destruction of Sennacherib, stanza 2.
To reckon without your host. To reckon from your own standpoint only. Guests who calculate what their expenses at an hotel will come to always leave out certain items which the landlord adds in.
“Found in few minutes, to his cost,
He did but count without his host.”
Butler: Hudibras, pt. i. canto iii. lines 22—3.
(2 syl.) is connected with the Latin obses, through the Mid. Latin hostagium, French Stage or ostage, Italian ostaggio.
is properly the keeper of an hostelry or inn.
I'll make the place too hot to hold him. (See Talus.)
I'll give it him hot and strong. I'll rate him most soundly and severely. Liquor very hot and strong takes one's breath away, and is apt to choke one.
Hot Cockles A Christmas game. One blindfolded knelt down, and being struck had to guess who gave the blow.
“Thus poets passing time away.
Like children at hot—cockles play.” (1653.)
Hot Cross Buns
Fosbroke says these buns were made of the dough kneaded for the host, and were marked with the cross accordingly. As the Good Friday buns are said to keep for twelve months without turning mouldy, some persons still hang up one or more in their house as a “charm against evil.” (See Cross.)
The round bun represents the full moon, and the cross represents the four quarters of the moon. They were made in honour of Diana by the ancient Roman priests, somewhere about the vernal equinox. Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Egyptians, as well as the Greeks and Romans, worshipped the moon.
With speed; fast.
“And the Blackfoot who courted each foeman's approach.
Faith, `tis hotfoot he'd fly from the stout Father
N.B. The Blackfoot was an Irish faction, similar to the Terry Alts in the early part of the nineteenth century.
(In.) In a state of trouble, or of anxiety. The reference is to the ordeal by hot water (q.v.).
Blackstone says hotch—pot is a pudding made of several things mixed together. Lands given in
frank—marriage or descending in fee—simple are to be mixed, like the ingredients of a pudding, and then cut up in equal slices among all the daughters. (Book ii. 12.)
As to personality: Hotch—pot may be explained thus: Suppose a father has advanced money to one child, at the decease of the father this child receives a sum in addition enough to make his share equal to the rest of the family. If not content, he must bring into hotch—pot the money that was advanced, and the whole is then divided amongst all the children according to the terms of the will.
French, hochepot, from hocher, to shake or jumble together; or from the German hoch—pot, the huge pot or family caldron. Wharton says it is haché en poche.
A confused mixture or jumble; a thick broth containing meat and vegetables.
“A sort of soup, or broth, or brew,
Or hotchpotch of all sorts of fishes.”
Thackeray: Ballad of Bouillabaisse, stanza 2.
A fiery person who has no control over his temper. Harry Percy was so called. Lord Derby was sometimes called the “Hotspur of debate.” Lytton, in New Timon, calls him, “frank haughty, bold, the Rupert of debate.” (See Shakespeare: 1 Henry IV. )
Rude, uncultured, a boor. As “You are a perfect Hottentot.”
is said to be a corruption of Cháteau Goumont; but Victor Hugo says it is Hugo—mons, and that the house was built by Hugo, Sire de Sommeril, the same person that endowed the sixth chapelry of the abbey of Villers.
Hound To hound a person is to persecute him, or rather to set on persons to annoy him, as hounds are let from the slips at a hare or stag.
“As he who only lets loose a greyhound out of the slip is said to hound him at the hare.” — Bramhall.
A superior quality of tea, so called from Hoque, the celebrated Hong—Kong tea merchant; died 1846.
(Greek and Latin, hora.)
At the eleventh hour. Just in time not to be too late; only just in time to obtain some benefit. The allusion is to the parable of labourers hired for the vineyard (Matt. xx.).
My hour is not yet come. The time of my death is not yet fully come. The allusion is to the belief that the hour of our birth and death is appointed and fixed.
“When Jesus knew that His hour was come.” —
John xiii. 1.
In an evil hour. Acting under an unfortunate impulse. In astrology we have our lucky and unlucky hours. In the small hours of the morning. One, two, and three, after midnight.
To keep good hours. To return home early every night; to go to bed bedtimes. “Se retirer la nuit de bonne heure.” In Latin, “Tempestive se domum recipere.”
(pl. Houris). The large blackeyed damsels of Paradise, possessed of perpetual youth and beauty, whose virginity is renewable at pleasure. Every believer will have seventy—two of these houris in Paradise, and his intercourse with them will be fruitful or otherwise, according to his wish. If an offspring is desired, it will grow to full estate in an hour. (Persian, huri; Arabic, huriya, nymphs of paradise. Compare ahivar, black—eyed.) (The Koran.)
(1 syl.). In astrology the whole heaven is divided into twelve portions, called “houses,” through which the heavenly bodies pass every twenty—four hours. In casting a man's fortune by the stars, the whole host is divided into two parts (beginning from the east), six above and six below the horizon. The eastern ones are called the ascendant, because they are about to rise; the other six are the descendant, because they have already passed the zenith. The twelve houses are thus awarded: —
(1) House of life; (2) House of fortune and riches; (3) House of brethren; (4) House of relatives; (5) House of children; (6) House of health.
(7) House of marriage; (8) House of death (the upper portal); (9) House of religion; (10) House of dignities;
(11) House of friends and benefactors; (12) House of enemies.
Like a house afire Very rapidly. “He is getting on like a house afire” means he is getting on excellently. To bring down the house (in a theatre, etc.) is to receive unusual and rapturous applause.
To keep house. To maintain a separate establishment. “To go into house—keeping" is to start a private establishment.
To keep a good house. To supply a bountiful table. To keep open house. To give free entertainment to all who choose to come. “Omnes benigne mensâ
occipere.” In French, “Tenir table ouverte.”
To throw the house out of the windows. To throw all things into confusion from exuberance of spirit (á des excès de joic). “Coelum terræ, terram coelo miscere;” or “Omnia confundere.” In French, “Jeter le maison par le fenêtres.”
Race or lineage; as, “the House of Hanover,” “the House of Austria.”
A sufficient allowance of wood to repair the dwelling and to supply fuel.
(A). The distinguishing flag of a company of shipowners or of a single ship—owner, as, for instance, that of the Cunard Company.
[Jove's beard]. Grown on house—roofs, from the notion that it warded off lightning. Charlemagne made an edict that every one of his subjects should have house—leek on his house—roof. The words are, “Et habet quisque supra domum suum Jovis barbam.” It was thought, to ward off all evil spirits. Fevers as well as lightning were at one time supposed to be due to evil spirits.
“If the herb house—leek or syngreen do grow on the house—top, the same house is never stricken with lightning or thunder” — Thomas Hill Natural and Artf. Conclusion.
Of DENMARK, Nis or Nisse (2 syl.).
Of ENGLAND, Puck or Robin Goodfellow.
Of FAROE ISLANDS, Niagruisar.
Of MINLAND, Para.
Of FRANCE, Esprit Follet.
Of GERMANY, Kobold.
Of MUNSTER, Fear Dearg or Red Man.
Of NAPLES, Monaciello or Little Monk.
Of NORWAY, same as Denmark.
Of SCOTLAND, Brownie.
Of SPAIN, Duende (3 syl.).
Of SWITZERLAND, Jack of the Bowl.
Of VAUDOIS, Servant.
Others of particular houses.
To cry from the house—top. To proclaim [it] from the house—top. To announce something in the most public manner possible. Jewish houses had flat roofs, which were paved. Here the ancient Jews used to assemble for gossip; here, too, not unfrequently, they slept; and here some of their festivals were held. From the house—tops the rising of the sun was proclaimed, and other public announcements were made.
“That which ye have spoken [whispered] in the ear ... shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.” — Luke xii. 3.
House and Home
He hath eaten me out of house and home (Shakespeare: 2 Henry IV., ii. 1). It is the complaint of hostess Quickly to the Lord Chief Justice when he asks for “what sum” she had arrested Sir John Falstaff. She explains the phrase by “he hath put all my substance into that fat belly of his;” “I am undone by his going.”
House of Correction
A gaol governed by a keeper. Originally it was a place where vagrants were made to work, and small offenders were kept in ward for the correction of their offences.
House of God (The). Not solely a church, or a temple made with hands, but any place sanctified by God's presence. Thus, Jacob in the wilderness, where he saw the ladder set up leading from earth to heaven, said, “This is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven (Gen. xxviii. 17).
House that Jack Built
(The). There are numerous similar glomerations. For example the Hebrew parable of The Two Zuzim. The summation runs thus: —
10. This is Yavah who vanquished
9. Death which killed
8. The butcher which slew
7. The ox which drank
6. The water which quenched
5. The fire which burnt
4. The stick which beat
3. The dog which worried
2. The cat which killed
1. The kid which my father bought for two zuzim.
(A zuzim was about = a farthing.)
Domestic pets, and all those things which help to endear home. The Romans had household gods called pe—na'—tes, who were supposed to preside over their private dwellings. Of these pe—na'—tes some were called lares, the special genii or angels of the family. One was Vest'a, whose office was to preserve domestic unity. Jupiter and Juno were also among the pe—na'—tes. The modern use of the term is a playful adaptation.
“Bearing a nation with all its household gods into exile.” Longfellow: Evangeline.
Those troops whose special duty it is to attend the sovereign and guard the metropolis. They consist of the 1st and 2nd Life—guards, the Royal Horseguards, and the three regiments of Footguards called the Grenadier, Coldstream, and Scots Fusilier Guards.
To give or receive the Eucharist. (Anglo—Saxon, huslian, to give the husel or host.)
“Children were christened, and men houseled and assoyled through all the land, except such as were in the bill of excommunication by name expressed.” — Holinshed: Chronicle.
(Prince). Brother of Prince Ahmed. He possessed a piece of carpet or tapestry of such wonderful power that anyone had only to sit upon it, end it would transport him in a moment to any place to which he desired to go.
“If Prince Houssain's flying tapestry or Astolpho's hippogriff had been shown, he would have judged them by the ordinary rules, and preferred a well—hung chariot.” — Sir Walter Scott.
(whinhims). A race of horses endowed with reason, who bear rule over a race of men. Gulliver, in his Travels, tells us what he “saw” among them. (Swift.)
“Nay, would kind Jove my organ so dispose
To hymn harmonious Houyhnhnms through the nose,
I'd call thee Houhnhnm, that high—sounding name;
Thy children's noses all should twang the same.”
How Do You Do?
A philanthropist. John Howard is immortalised by his efforts to improve the condition of prisoners. “He visited all Europe,” says Burke, “not to survey the sumptuousness of palaces or the stateliness of temples; not to make accurate measurements of the remains of ancient grandeur, nor to form a scale of the curiosity of modern art; not to collect manuscripts — but to dive into the depths of dungeons; to plunge into the infection of hospitals; to survey the mansions of sorrow and pain; to take the dimensions of misery, depression, and contempt; to remember the forgotten; to attend to the neglected; to visit the forsaken, and to compare the distress of all men in all countries. His plan is original, and it is as full of genius as it is of humanity. It was a voyage of discovery; a circumnavigation of charity.” (John Howard, 1726—1790.)
“The radiant path that Howard trod to Heaven.”
Bloomfield: Farmer's Boy.
The female Howard. Mrs. Elizabeth Fry (1780—1844).
All the blood of all the Howards. All the nobility of our best aristocracy. The ducal house of Norfolk stands at the head of the English peerage, and is interwoven in all our history.
“What could ennoble sots, or slaves, or cowards?
Alas! not all the blood of all the Howards.”
Pope: Essay on Man, Ep. iv. line 216.
What will “all the blood of all the Howards” say to Mr. Walter Rye who, in his History of Norfolk (1885), tells us that “Howard is from hog—ward,” and that the original Howards were so called from their avocation, which was to tend the pigs.
Howard. Mr. Bug, late of Epsom (Surrey), then of Wakefield (Yorkshire), landlord of the Swan Tavern, changed his name (June, 1862) to Norfolk Howard.
A canopy, or seat fixed on the back of an elephant.
“Leading the array, three stately elephants marched, bearing the Woons in gilded howdahs under gold umbrellas.” — J. W. Palmer: Up and Down the Irrawaddi, chap. xx. p. 169.
(2 syl.). A midwife.
are guns used to fire buildings, to reach troops behind hills or parapets, to bound their shells along lines and against cavalry, to breach mud walls by exploding their shells in them, etc. They project common shells, common and spherical case—shot, carcasses, and, if necessary, round shot. In a mortar the trunnions are at the end; in howitzers they are in the middle.
“The howitzer was taken to pieces, and carried by the men to its destination.” — Grant: Personal Memoirs, chap. xi. p. 158.
(2 syl.). A clever rascal, the hero of an old German romance by Thomas Murner, popular in the eighteenth century.
(See Horse .)
The nave of a wheel; a boss; also a skid. (Welsh, hob, a swelling, a protuberance; compare also a hwb.) The Americans call Boston, Massachusetts, “The hub [boss] of the solar system.”
“Boston State—house is the hub of the solar system.” — Holmes: Autocrat of the Breakfast Table, chap. vi. p. 143.
“Calcutta swaggers as if it were the hub of the universe.” — Daily News, 1886.
An Arab idol brought from Bulka, in Syria, by Amir Ibn—Lohei, who asserted that it would procure rain when wanted. It was the statue of a man in red agate; one hand being lost, a golden one was supplied. He held in his hand seven arrows without wings or feathers, such as the Arabians use in divination. This idol was destroyed in the eighth year of “the flight.”
(Old Mother). The famous dame of nursery mythology, who went to the cupboard to fetch her poor dog a bone; but when she got there the cupboard was bare, so the poor dog had none.
(h silent), in Shakespeare's King John, is Hubert de Burgh, Justice of England, created Earl of Kent. He died 1243.
St. Hubert. Patron saint of huntsmen. He was son of Bertrand, Due d'Acquitaine, and cousin of King Pepin.
Hubert was so fond of the chase that he neglected his religious duties for his favourite amusement, till one day a stag bearing a crucifix menaced him with eternal perdition unless he reformed. Upon this the merry huntsman entered a cloister, became in time Bishop of Lièe, and the apostle of Ardennes and Brabant. Those who were descended of his race were supposed to possess the power of curing the bite of mad dogs.
St. Hubert in Christian art is represented sometimes as a bishop with a miniature stag resting on the book in his hand, and sometimes as a noble huntsman kneeling to the miraculous crucifix borne by the stag.
Said to be a caricature of Sir Samuel Luke, a patron of Samuel Butler. The Grub'Street Journal (1731) maintains it was Colonel Rolle, of Devonshire, with whom the poet lodged for some time, and adds that the name is derived from Hugh de Bras, the patron saint of the county He represents the Presbyterian party, and his squire the Independents.
“ `Tis sung there is a valiant Mameluke,
In foreign land ycleped [Sir Samuel Luke].”
Butler: Hudibras, i. 1
Sir Hudibras. The cavalier of Elisa of Parsimony. (Spenser: Faërie Queene, book. ii.)
A doggerel eight—syllable rhyming verse, after the style of Butler's Hudibras.
(Sir Jeffrey). The famous dwarf, at one time page to Queen Henrietta Maria. Sir Walter Scott has introduced him in his Peveril of the Peak, chap. xxxiv. Vandyke has immortalised him by his brush; and his clothes are said to be preserved in Sir Hans Sloane's museum. (1619—1678.) The person slain in a duel by this dwarf was the Hon. Mr. Crofts.
“We fought on horseback — breaking ground and advancing by signal; and, as I never miss aim, I had the misfortune to kill [my adversary] at the first shot.” — Sir W. Scott: Peveril of the Peak, chap. xxxiv.
Hue and Cry
A phrase used in English law to describe a body of persons joining in pursuit of a felon or suspected thief. (French, huéc, verb huer, to hoot or shout after; Anglo—Saxon, hui, ho!)
Hug the Shore
(To). In the case of a ship, to keep as close to the shore as is compatible with the vessel's safety, when at sea. “Serrer la terre.”
Hug the Wind
(To). To keep a ship close hauled. “Serrer le vent.”
The primary meaning is clandestinely. The secondary meaning is disorderly, in a slovenly manner. To hugger is to lie in ambush, from the Danish hug, huger, huggring, to squat on the ground; mugger is the Danish smug, clandestinely, whence our word smuggle.
The king in Hamlet says of Polonius: “We have done but greenly in hugger—mugger to inter him” — i.e. to smuggle him into the grave clandestinely and without ceremony.
Sir T. North, in his Plutarch, says: “Antonius thought that his body should be honourably buried, and not in hugger—mugger" (clandestinely).
Ralph says: —
“While I, in hugger—mugger hid,
Have noted all they said and did.”
Butler: Hudibras, iii. 3.
Under the secondary idea we have the following expressions: — He lives in a hugger—mugger sort of way; the rooms were all hugger—mugger (disorderly).
Huggins and Muggins
Mr. and Mrs. Vulgarity, of Pretension Hall.
Hugh Lloyd's Pulpit
(Merionethshire). A natural production of stone. One pile resembles the Kilmarth Rocks. There is a platform stone with a back in stone. (Hugh pron. You.)
An English perversion of “Euperion,” a predecessor of lucifer matches invented by Heurtner, who opened a shop in the Strand, and advertised his invention thus —
“To save your knuckles time and trouble,
Use Heurter's Euperion.”
(See Prometheans, Vesuvians.)
Hugh of Lincoln
It is said that the Jews in 1255 stole a boy named Hugh, whom they tortured for ten days and then crucified. Eighteen of the richest Jews of Lincoln were hanged for taking part in this affair, and the boy was buried in state. This is the subject of The Prioress's Talc of Chaucer, which Wordsworth has modernised. In Rymer's Foedera are several documents relating to this event.
Hugin and Munin
[mind and memory]. The two ravens that sit on the shoulders of Odin or Alfader.
“Perhaps the nursery saying, `A little bird told me that,' is a corruption of Hugo and Munin, and so we have the old Northern superstition lingering among us without our being aware of it.” — Julia Goddard: Joyce Dormer's Story, ii. 11. (See Bird.)
in Jerusalem Delivered, Count of Vermandois, brother of Philippe I. of France, leader of the Franks. He died before Godfrey was appointed leader of the united armies (book i.), but his spirit was seen by Godfrey amongst the angels who came to aid in taking Jerusalem (book xviii.).
Hugo, natural son of Azo, Marquis of Estë who fell in love with Parisina, his father's young wife. Azo discovered the intrigue, and condemned Hugo to be beheaded. (Byron: Parisina.)
(King). The great hobgoblin of France.
(U—gue—no). First applied to the Reformed Church party in the Amboise Plot (1560). From the German cidgenosscn (confederates)
Huguenot Pope (La pape des Huguenots). Philippe de Mornay, the great supporter of the French Protestants. (1549—1623.)
[the Benignant]. Goddess of marriage and fecundity, who sent bridegrooms to maidens and children to the married. (German.) (See Berchta.)
Hulda is making her bed. It snows. (See above.)
An old ship unfit for service. (Anglo—Saxon, hule, from Mid. Latin hulca, connected with Greek ó= a ship which is towed, a merchant ship.)
A great hulking fellow. A great overgrown one. A bulk is a big, lubberly fellow, applied to Falstaff by Shakespeare. It means the body of an old ship. (See above.)
The monster sausage brought in on Christmas day was called a haulkin or haukin
“From Hull, Hell, and Halifax
Good Lord, deliver us.”
This occurs in Taylor, the water poet. Hull is not the town so called, but a furious river in Kingston, very dangerous. In regard to Halifax, the allusion is to the law that the theft of goods to the value of 13d.shall subject the thief to execution “by a jyn.”
Strong ale, or rather intoxicating cake, like “tipsy cake,” thus described by Taylor, the
water—poet: “It is much like a loafe out of a brewer's basket; it is composed of two simples — mault and water,
... and is cousin—germane to the mightiest ale in England. (See vol. ii. of Taylor's Works.)
Uproar. Irish pullalue, a coronach or crying together at funerals. (See Hurly—Burly.)
“All this the poor ould creathure set up such a pullalue, that she brought the seven parishes about her.” — Dublin and London Magazine (Loughleagh), 1825.
Instituted by the Rev. John Hulse, of Cheshire, in 1777. Every year some four or six sermons are preached at Great St. Mary's, Cambridge, by what is now called the Hulsean Lecturer, who, till 1860, was entitled the Christian Advocate. Originally twenty sermons a year were preached and afterwards printed under this benefaction.
Hum and Haw
(To). To hesitate to give a positive plain answer; to hesitate in making a speech. To introduce hum and haw between words which ought to follow each other freely.
(The). A fabulous Oriental bird which never alights, but is always on the wing. It is said that every head which it overshadows will wear a crown (Richardson). The splendid little bird suspended over the throne of Tippoo Saib at Seringapatam represented this poetical fancy.
In the first chapter of the Autocrat of the Breakfast Table a certain popular lecturer is made to describe himself, in allusion to his many wanderings, to this bird: “Yes, I am like the Huma, the bird that never lights; being always in the cars, as the Huma is always on the wing.”
(h soft). Father of the human race. Adam.
A custom still subsisting seems to prove that the Egyptians formerly sacrificed a young virgin to the god of the Nile, for they now make a statue of clay in shape of a girl, which they call the
“betrothed bride,” and throw it into the river. (Savary.)
Those who believe that Jesus Christ was only man. The disciples of St. Simon are so called also, because they maintain the perfectibility of human nature without the aid of grace.
or Humanity Studies. Grammar, rhetoric, and poetry, with Greek and Latin (literæ humaniores); in contradistinction to divinity (literæ divinæ).
“The humanities ... is used to designate those studies which are considered the most specially adapted for training ... true humanity in every man.” — Trench: On the Study of Words, Lecture iii. p. 69.
Humber Chief of the Huns, defeated by Locrin, King of England, and drowned in the river Abus, ever since called the Humber. (Geoffrey of Monmouth: Chronicles.)
“Their chieftain Humber named was aright
Unto the mighty streame him to betake,
Where he an end of battall and of life did make.” Spenser: Faërie Queene, ii. 10.
A corruption of the German hummel bee, the buzzing bee. Sometimes called the Dumble—dor. Also Bumble—bee, from its booming drone.
(A) A cow without horns.
“ `That,' said John with a broad grin, was Grizzel chasing the humble cow out of the close.” — Sir W. Scott: Guy Mannering, chap. ix.
To eat humble pie. To come down from a position you have assumed, to be obliged to take “a lower room.” “Umbles” are the heart, liver, and entrails of the deer, the huntsman's perquisites. When the lord and his household dined the venison pasty was served on the daïs, but the umbles were made into a pie for the huntsman and his fellows.
N.B. Pie and patty are both diminutives of pasty. Pasty and patty are limited to venison, veal, and some few other meats; pie is of far wider signification, including fruit, mince, etc.
A correspondent in Notes and Queries (March 5th, 1892) suggests as the fons et origo of this word the Italian Uomo bugiardo, a lying man.
To hum used to signify “to applaud,” “to pretend admiration,” hence “to flatter,” “to cajole for an end,” “to deceive.”
“He threatened, but behold! `twas all a hum.”
Peter Pindar, i. 436.
“ `Gentlemen, this humming [expression of applause] is not at all becoming the gravity of this court.” — State Trials (1660).
(David), the historian, takes the lead among modern philosophical sceptics. His great argument is this: It is more likely that testimony should be false than that miracles should be true. (1711—1776.)
Strong liquor that froths well, and causes a humming in the head of the drinker.
(in Covent Garden). So called from the Persian humoun (a sweating or Turkish bath).
As good humour, ill or had humour, etc. According to an ancient theory, there are four principal humours in the body: phlegm, blood, choler, and black bile. As any one of these predominates it determines the temper of the mind and body; hence the expressions sanguine, choleric, phlegmatic, and melancholic humours. A just balance made a good compound called “good humour;” a preponderance of any one of the four made a bad compound called an ill or evil humour. (See Ben Jonson . Every Man Out of His Humour (Prologue).
Geronimo Amelunghi, Il Gobo di Pisa (sixteenth century). Andre'a Solari, the Italian painter, Del Gobbo (1470—1527).
Humphrey (Master). The imaginary collector of the tales in Master Humphrey's Clock, by Charles Dickens.
The good Duke Humphrey. (See Good Duke Humphrey.) To dine with Duke Humphrey. To have no dinner to go to. Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester, son of Henry
IV., was renowned for his hospitality. At death it was reported that a monument would be erected to him in St. Paul's, but his body was interred at St. Albans. When the promenaders left for dinner, the poor stay—behinds who had no dinner used to say to the gay sparks who asked if they were going, that they would stay a little longer and look for the monument of the “good duke.”
To dine with Duke Humphrey in Powl's Walk.
A similar locution is To sup with Sir Thomas Gresham. The Exchange built by Sir Thomas being a common lounge.
“Though little coin thy purseless pocket line,
Yet with great company thou art taken up;
For often with Duke Humphrey thou dost dine, And often with Sir Thomas Gresham sup.”
Hayman: Quodlibet (Epigram on a Loafer), 1628.
An egg, a little deformed dwarf. Dumpty is a corruption of dumpy (short and thick). A dump is a piece of lead used in chuck—farthing. Humpty is having a hump or hunch. The two mean short, thick, and round—shouldered.
Styled My Lord. Grose says this was done in the reign of Richard III., when many deformed men were made peers; but probably the word is the Greek lordos (crooked).
Hero of the hundred fights or battles. Lord Nelson (1758—1805)
Conn, a celebrated Irish hero, is so called by O'Gnive, the bard of O'Niel: “Conn, of the hundred fights, sleeps in thy grass—grown tomb.”
A county division mentioned in Domesday Book, and supposed to embrace ten tithings for military and constabulary purposes. If a crime was committed (such as robbery, maiming cattle, stack—burning, etc.), these sureties were bound to make it good, or bring the offender to justice.
Northumberland, Cumberland, Westmoreland, and Durham are divided into “wards” (q.v.). Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, and Notts, into “wapentakes” (q.v.). Yorkshire has also a special division, called “ridings” (q.v.).
Kent is divided into five lathes, with subordinate hundreds. (See Lathes.) Sussex is divided into six rapes (1 syl.), with subordinate hundreds. (See Rapes.)
The days between March 20, 1815, when Napoleon reached the Tuileries, after his escape from Elba, and June 28, the date of the second resioration of Louis XVIII. These hundred days were noted for five things:
The additional Act to the constitutions of the empire, April 22; The Coalition; The Champ de Mai, June 1; The battle of Waterloo, June 18; The second abdication of Napoleon in favour of his son, June 22.
He left Elba February 26; landed at Cannes March 1, and at the Tuileries March 20. He signed his abdication June 22, and abdicated June 28.
The address of the Count de Chambord, the prefect, begins thus: “A hundred days, sire, have elapsed since the fatal moment when your Majesty was forced to quit your capital in the midst of tears.” This is the origin of the phrase.
(The). Argus, in Greek and Latin fable. Juno appointed him guardian of Io [the cow], but Jupiter caused him to be put to death, whereupon Juno transplanted his eyes into the tail of her peacock.
Hundred—handed (The). Three of the sons of Uranus were so called, viz. Ægaeon or Briareus [Bri'—a—ruce], Kottos, and Gyges or Gyes. Called in Greek Hekatogcheiros [hek'—ka—ton—kiros]. After the war between Zeus and the Titans, when the latter were overcome and hurled into Tartarus, the
Hundred—handed ones were set to keep watch and ward over them. (See Giants.)
Sometimes the three—headed Cerberus is so called, because the necks were covered with snakes instead of hair.
(A). Not a hundred miles off. An indirect way of saying in this very neighbourhood, or very spot. The phrase is employed when it would be indiscreet or dangerous to refer more directly to the person or place hinted at, as, “Not a hundred miles off, there is ...”
Hundred Years' War
(The). The struggle between France and England, beginning in the reign of Edward III., 1337, and ending in that of Henry VI., 1453.
“Sons les regnés de Philippe VI. (de Valois), de Jean II., de Charles V., VI., et VII., en France” — Bouillet: Dictionnaire d'Histoire, p. 367 col. 2.
One half—starved; intended as a pun on the word hunger (a dinnerless fop).
Made of rosemary, sage, and spices; so called because the receipt was given by a hermit to the Queen of Hungary.
Hunger seasons Food
“Hunger is the best sauce.”
“Hunger is good kitchen meat.”
“Il n'y a sauce que d'appétit.”
“L'appétit assaisonne tout.”
“Optimum condimentum fames.” (Socrates.)
“Optimum tibi condimentum est fames, potionis sitis.” Cicero. “Manet hodieque vulgo tritum proverbium: Famem efficere ut crudæ etiam fabæ saccharium sapiant.” (Erasmus.)
“La fame e il miglior intingolo.”
“Appetito non vuol salsa.”
The contrary: —
“The full soul loatheth a honey—comb.” (Prov. xxvii. 7.) “It must be a delicate dish to tempt the o'ergorged appetite.” (Southey.) “He who is not hungry is a fastidious eater.” (Spanish.)
“Plenty makes dainty.”
(hunger). The dish out of which the goddess Hel (q.v.) was wont to feed
Hungry as a dog In Latin, “Rabidus fame, ceu canis.” Hungry as a hawk.
Hungry as a hunter.
Hungry as a kite. In Latin, Milvinam appententiam habere.” (Plautus.) Hungry as a wolf. In French, “Avoir une faim de loup.” Another French phrase is “Avoir un faim de diable.”
Hungry dogs will eat dirty puddings.
“To the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.” (Prov. xxvii. 7.) “When bread is wanting oaten cakes are excellent.”
Latin: — “Jejunus raro stomachus vulgaria temnit.” (Horace.) French: — “A la faim il n'y a point de mauvais pain.”
“A ventre affameé tout est bon.”
“Ventre affamé n'a point d'oreilles.”
“L'asino chi a fame mangia d'ogni strame.” German: —
“Wem kase und brod nicht schmeckt, der ist nicht hungrig.”
or Hunyady (4 syl.). One of the greatest captains of the fourteenth century. The Turks so much feared him that they used his name for scaring children. (1400—1456.) (See Bogie.)
“The Turks employed this name to frighten their perverse children. He was corruptly denominated `Jancus lain.' ” — Gibbon: Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, xii. 166.
An old hunks. A screw, a hard, selfish, mean fellow. (Icelandic, hunskur, sordid.)
Like Hunt's dog, he would neither go to church nor stay at home. One Hunt, a labouring man in Shropshire, kept a mastiff, which, on being shut up while his master went to church, howled and barked so terribly as to disturb the whole congregation; whereupon Hunt thought he would take his Lycisca with him the next Sunday,—but on reaching the churchyard the dog positively refused to enter. The proverb is applied to a tricky, self—willed person, who will neither be led or driven.
Mr. and Mrs. Leo Hunter. Two lion hunters, or persons who hunt up all the celebrities of London to grace their parties. (Dickens: Pickwick Papers.)
The mighty hunter. Nimrod is so called (Gen. x. 9). The meaning seems to be a conqueror. Jeremiah says, “I [the Lord] will send for many hunters [warriors], and they shall hunt [chase] them [the Jews] from every mountain ... and out of the holes of the rocks” (xvi. 16).
“Proud Nimrod first the bloody chase began —
A mighty hunter, and his prey was man.”
(The). The month or moon following the “harvest moon” (q.v.). Hunting does not begin until after harvest.
Hunters and Runners
of classic renown:
ACASTOS, who took part in the famous Calydonian hunt (a wild boar). ACTÆON, the famous huntsman who was transformed by Diana into a stag, because he chanced to see her bathing.
ADONIS, beloved by Venus, slain by a wild boar while hunting.
ADRASTOS, who was saved at the siege of Thebes by the speed of his horse Arion, given him by Hercules.
ATALANTA, who promised to marry the man who could outstrip her in running. CAMILLA, the swiftest—footed of all the companions of Diana.
LADAS, the swiftest—footed of all the runners of Alexander the Great, MELEAGER, who took part in the great Calydonian boar—hunt.
ORION, the great and famous hunter, changed into the Constellation, so conspicuous in November. PHEIDIPPIDES, who ran 135 miles in two days.
Hunting of the Hare
A comic romance, published in Weber's collection. A yeoman informs the inhabitants of a village that he has seen a hare, and invites them to join him in hunting it. They attend with their curs and mastiffs, pugs and house—dogs, and the fun turns on the truly unsportsmanlike manner of giving puss the chase.
Hunting the Gowk
(See April Fool .)
Hunting the Snark
A child's tale by “Lewis Carroll,” a pseudonym adopted by C. Lutwidge Dodgson, author of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, with its continuation, Through the Looking—glass, etc. (See Snark.)
Hunting two Hares
He who hunts two hares leaves one and loses the other. No one can do well or properly two things at once. “No man can serve two masters.”
“Poursuis deux lièvres, et les manques” (La Fontaine). On ne peut tirer à deux cibles.”
“Duos qui sequitur leporcs, neutrum capit.” “Simul sorbere ac flare non poseum.”
“Like a man to double business bound
I stand in pause where I shall first begin,
And both neglect.”
(called by the Saxons Huntantun, and in Doomsday Hunter's dune) appears to have derived its name from its situation in a tract of country which was anciently an extensive forest abounding with deer, and well suited for the purposes of the chase.
(A). An ass's foal. Pepys, in his Diary, tells us that during a high flood between the meadows of Huntingdon and Godmanchester something was seen floating on the water, which the Huntingdonians insisted was a sturgeon, but, being rescued, it proved to be a young donkey.
Huon de Bordeaux
encounters in Syria an old follower of the family named Gerasmes (2 syl.), whom he asks the way to Babylon. Gerasmes told him the shortest and best way was through a wood sixteen leagues long, and full of fairies; that few could go that way because King O'beron was sure to encounter them, and whoever spoke to this fay was lost for ever. If a traveller, on the other hand, refused to answer him, he raised a most horrible storm of wind and rain, and made the forest seem one great river. “But,” says the vassal, “the river is a mere delusion, through which anyone can wade without wetting the soles of his shoes.” Huon for a time followed the advice of Gerasmes, but afterwards addressed Oberon, who told him the history of his birth. They became great friends, and when Oberon went to Paradise he left Huon his successor as lord and king of Mommur. He married Esclairmond, and was crowned “King of all Faerie.” (Huon de Bordeaux, a romance).
(A). A race in which the runners have to leap over three or more hurdles, fixed in the ground at unequal distances.
Hurdy—gurdy A stringed instrument of music, like a rude violin; the notes of which are produced by the friction of a wheel.
A ridiculous burlesque, which in 1730 had an extraordinary run at the Haymarket theatre. So great was its popularity that a club called “The Hurlo—Thrumbo Society” was formed. The author was Samuel Johnson, a half—mad dancing master, who put this motto on the title—page when the burlesque was printed: —
“Ye sons of fire, read my Hurlo—Thrumbo,
Turn it betwixt your finger and your thumbo, And being quite undone, be quite struck dumbo.”
Uproar, tumult, especially of battle. A reduplication of hurly. Hurlu—berlu is the French equivalent, evidently connected with hurler, to howl or yell. (See Hullabaloo.)
In the Garden of Eloquence (1577) the word is given as a specimen of onomatopoeia.
“When the hurly—burly's done,
When the battle's lost and won.”
The Witches, in Macbeth i. 1.
the Hebrew . Our “Old Hundredth Psalm” begins with “Shout joyfully [hurrah] to Jehovah!” The word is also of not uncommon occurrence in other psalms. See Notes and Queries, October 16th, 1880.
(Norwegian and Danish, hurra!) (See Huzza.)
The Norman battle—cry was “Ha Rollo!” or “Ha Rou!” (French, huzzer, to shout aloud; Russian, hoera and hoezee.)
“The Saxon cry of `Out! Out, Holy Crosse!' rose high above the Norman sound of `Ha Rou! Ha Rou, Notre Dame!' ” — Lord Lytton: Harold, book xii. chap. 8.
Wace (Chronicle) tells us that Tur aie (Thor aid) was the battle cry of the Northmen.
(3 syl.). A large private party or rout; so called from its hurry, bustle and noise. (See Drum.)
The Mahouts cheer on their elephants by repeating ur—ré, the Arabs their camels by shouting ar—ré, the French their hounds by shouts of hare, the Germans their horses by the word hurs, the herdsmen of Ireland their cattle by shouting hurrish. (Welsh, gyru, to drive; Armenian, haura, to hasten; Latin, curro, to run; etc.)
Don't hurry, Hopkins. A satirical reproof to those who are not prompt in their payments. It is said that one Hopkins, of Kentucky, gave his creditor a promissory note on which was this memorandum, “The said Hopkins is not to be hurried in paying the above.”
Another ricochet word with which our language abounds. It means a confused haste, or rather, haste without waiting for the due ordering of things; pell—mell.
is the house farmer. Bonde is Norwegian for a “farmer,” hence bondë—by (a village where farmers dwell); and hus means “house.” Hus—band—man is the man—of—the—house farmer. The husband, therefore, is the master farmer, and the husband—man the servant or labourer. “Husbandry” is the occupation of a farmer or husband; and a bondman or bondslave has no connection with bond = fetters, or the verb to bind. It means simply a cultivator of the soil. (See Villein.) Old Tusser was in error when he derived the word from
“house—band,” as in the following distich: —
“The name of the husband, what is it to say?
Of wife and of house hold the band and the stay.” Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry.
(The). The boat which leaves London on Saturday, and takes to Margate those fathers of families who live in that neighbourhood during the summer months.
“I shall never forget the evening when we went down to the jetty to see the Husbands' boat come in.” — The Mistletoe Bough.
Very weak tea.
Money given to a person who knows a secret to keep him from mentioning it. A bribe for silence or “hushing” a matter up.
(2 syl.), in Dryden's satire of Absalom and Achitophel, is Hyde, Earl of Rochester. Hushai was David's friend, who counteracted the counsels of Achitophel, and caused the plot of Absalom to miscarry; so Rochester defeated the schemes of Shaftesbury, and brought to nought the rebellion of the Duke of Monmouth.
N.B. This was not John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester, the wit.
Matthias Corvinus compelled every twenty families to provide him with one horse—soldier free of all charge. This was in 1458, and in confirmation of this story we are told that huss is an Hungarian word meaning “twenty,” and that ar means “pay.”
When Matthias Corvinus succeeded to the crown of Hungary (1458), Mohammed III. and Frederick III. conspired to dethrone “the boy king”; but Matthias enrolled an army of Hussars, and was able to defy his enemies.
“Item si contigerit ut aliqui predones aut huzarii Hungari aliquam rapinam ... intulerínt...” — A clause in a truce between the Turks and George Brankovich, May 21st, 1449.
(2 syl.). Followers of John Huss, the Bohemian reformer, in the fourteenth century. (See Bethlemenites.)
A little hussy. A word of slight contempt, though in some counties it seems to mean simply girl, as “Come hither, hussy.” Of course, the word is a corruption of housewife or hussif. In Swedish hustru means woman in general. It is rather remarkable that mother in Norfolk has given rise to a similar sort of word, morther, as “Come hither, morther” — i.e. girl. Neither hussy nor morther is applied to married women. In Norfolk they also say mor for a female, and bor for the other sex. Moer is Dutch for woman in general, and boer for peasant, whence our boor.
A wood in Flanders, where Reynard declared his vast treasures were concealed. (Reynard the Fox.)
House — things or city courts. London has still its court of Hustings in Guildhall, in which are elected the lord mayor, the aldermen, and city members. The hustings of elections are so called because, like the court of Hustings, they are the places of elective assemblies. (Anglo—Saxon, husting, a place of council.)
Followers of Anne Hutchinson, who retired to Rhode Island. Anne and fifteen of her children were subsequently murdered by the Indians (died 1643).
Hutin Louis le Hutin. Louis X. Mazerai says he received the name because he was tongue—doughty. The hutinet was a mallet used by coopers which made great noise, but did not give severe blows; as we should say, the barker or barking dog. It is my belief that he was so named because he was sent by his father against the
“Hutins,” a seditious people of Navarre and Lyons. (1289, 1314—1316.)
A cover for a sore finger, made by cutting off the finger of an old glove. The word hut in this instance is from the German huten (to guard or protect). It is employed in the German noun finger—hut (a thimble to protect the finger), and in the word huth or hut. (See Hodeken.)
(Old French, huzzer, “to shout aloud;” German, hussah! (See Hurrah.)
(See Hussy .)
A boiling cauldron in Niflheim, whence issues twelve poisonous springs, which generate ice, snow, wind, and rain. (Scandinavian mythology.)
according to Grecian fable, was the son of Amyclas, a Spartan king. The lad was beloved by Apollo and Zephyr, and as he preferred the sun—god, Zephyr drove Apollo's quoit at his head, and killed him. The blood became a flower, and the petals are inscribed with the boy's name. (Virgil Eclogues, iii. 106.)
“The hyacinth bewrays the doleful `A I,
And culls the tribute of Apollo's sigh.
Scill on its bloom the mournful flower retains The lovely blue that dyed the stripling's veins.' Camoens: Lusiad, ix.
(3 syl.). Seven nymphs placed among the stars, in the constellation Taurus, which threaten rain when they rise with the sun. The fable is that they wept the death of their brother Hyas so bitterly, that Zeus (1 syl.), out of compassion, took them to heaven, and placed them in the constellation Taurus. (Greek, huein, to rain.)
A mountain in Sicily, famous for its honey. (See Hymettus.)
A monster of the Lernean marshes, in Argolis. It had nine heads, and Hercules was sent to kill it. As soon as he struck off one of its heads, two shot up in its place.
Hydra—headed. Having as many heads as the hydra (q.v.); a difficulty which goes on increasing as it is combated.
Hydra—headed multitude. The rabble, which not only is many—headed numerically, but seems to grow more numerous the more it is attacked and resisted.
were worshipped by the ancient Egyptians. Pliny says that a certain stone, called the “hyænia,” found in the eye of the creature, being placed under the tongue, imparts the gift of prophecy (xxxvii. 60).
(3 syl.). Goddess of health and the daughter of Æsculapios. Her symbol was a serpent drinking from a cup in her hand.
A tribe of Cuthites (2 syl.), driven out of Assyria by Aralius and the Shemites. They founded in Egypt a dynasty called Hyksos (shepherd kings), a title assumed by all the Cuthite chiefs. This dynasty, which gave Egypt six or eight kings, lasted 259 years, when the whole horde was driven from Egypt, and retired to Palestine. It is from these refugees that the lords of the Philistines arose. The word is compounded of hyk (king) and sos (shepherd).
Hylas A boy beloved by Hercules, carried off by the nymphs while drawing water from a fountain in Mysia.
(in Astrology). That planet, or point of the sky, which dominates at man's birth, and influences his whole life.
God of marriage, a sort of overgrown Cupid. His symbols are a bridal—torch and veil in his hand.
The giant in Celtic mythology who took Thor in his boat when that god went to kill the serpent; for which service he was flung by the ears into the sea. (See Giants.)
A mountain in Attica, famous for its honey. (See Hybla.)
“The Heavens are Telling.” (From Haydn's Creation.)
“Marching to Glory.” The tune of Marching to Georgia. “Onward, Christian Soldiers.” One of Haydn's Symphonies. “Lo! He comes with clouds descending.” The tune of a hornpipe danced at Saddler's Wells in the eighteenth century. (Helmsley.)
“There is a Happy Land.” An Indian air.
“The Land of the Leal.” Scots wha hae wi' Wallace bled. “Brightest and best of the Sons of the Morning.” Mendelssohn's Lieder No. 9. “Sweet the Moments.” The first sixteen bars of Beethoven's Piano Sonata, Op. 26.
Sung as the clock strikes 5 a.m. by Magdalen choir on the summit of Wolsey's Tower (Oxford) on May morning to greet the rising sun. Some say the custom dates from the reign of Henry VIII.; if this overshoots the mark, no one knows for certainty a more exact period.
“Te Deum Patrem collmus,
Te laudibus prosequimur;
Qui corpus ciboriflcis,
Coelesti mentem gratia.”
(5 syl.). The most northern people, who dwell beyond Boreas (the sent of the north wind), placed by Virgil under the North Pole. They are said to be the oldest of the human race, the most virtuous, and the most happy; to dwell for some thousand years under a cloudless sky, in fields yielding double harvests, and in the enjoyment of perpetual spring. When sated of life they crown their heads with flowers, and plunge headlong from the mountain Hunneberg or Halleberg into the sea, and enter at once the paradise of Odin.
The Hyperboreans, it is said, have not an atmosphere like our own, but one consisting wholly of feathers. Both Herodotos and Pliny mention this fiction, which they say was suggested by the quantity of snow observed to fall in those regions. (Herodotos, iv. 31.)
Properly, the father of the Sun and Moon, but by poets made a surname of the Sun. Shakespeare makes it a synonym of Apollo. The proper pronunciation is Hyperion. Thus Ovid —
“Placat equo Persis radiis Hyperione cinctum.”
Fasti, i. 385.
“So excellent a king, that was to this
Hyperion to a satyr.”
Shakespeare: Hamlet, i. 9.
Wife of Lynceus (2 syl.), and the only one of the fifty daughters of Danaos who did not murder her husband on their bridal night.
The art of producing trance—sleep, or hypnosis; or the state of being hypnotised. (Greek, hupnos, sleep.)
“The method, discovered by Mr. Braid, of prod ucing this state ... appropriately designated ... hypnotism, consists in the maintenance of a fixed gaze for several minutes ... on a bright object placed somewhat above [the line of sight], at so short a distance [as to produce pain].” — Carpenter: Principles of Mental Physiology, book ii. chap. i. p. 65.
(Greek, hypo chondros, under the cartilage) — i.e. the spaces on each side of the epigastric region, supposed to be the seat of melancholy as a disease.
L'hypocrisie est un hommage que le vice rend à la vertu. (Rochefoucauld.)
(3 syl.). Prince of hypocrites. Tiberius Caesar was so called, because he affected a great regard for decency, but indulged in the most detestable lust and cruelty (B.C. 42, 14 to A.D. 37).
Abdallah Ibn Obba and his partisans were called The Hypocrites by Mahomet, because they feigned to be friends, but were in reality disguised foes.
called by Rabelais Chaneph, which is the Hebrew for “hypocrisy.” Rabelais says it is wholly inhabited by sham saints, spiritual comedians, bead—tumblers, mumblers of avemarias, and such like sorry rogues, who lived on the alms of passengers, like the hermit of Lormont. (Pantagruel, iv. 63.)
The union of two or more persons into one undivided unity, as, for example, the three persons of the eternal Godhead. The Greek hyposiasis corresponds to the Latin persona. The three persons of the God and three hypostases of the Godhead mean one and the same thing.
“We do not find, indeed, that the hypostatic pre—existence of Christ was an article of their creed [i.e. of the Nazarenes].” — Fisher: Supernatural Origin of Christianity, essay v. p. 319.
[hipt ]. Melancholy, low—spirited. Hyp, is a contraction of hypochondria.
One of the varieties of green tea. “Ainsi nommé d'un mot chinois qui veut dire printemps, parce que c'est au commencement de cette saison qu'on le cueille. ” (M. N. Bouillet.)
Hyssop David says (Ps. li. 7): “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean.” The reference is to the custom of someone who was ceremoniously “clean” sprinkling the unclean (when they came to present themselves in the Temple) with a bunch of hyssop dipped in water, in which had been mixed the ashes of a red heifer. This was done as they left the Court of the Gentiles to enter the Court of the women (Numbers xix. 17).
(Greek). The cart before the horse.