Character Sketches of Romance, Fiction and the Drama, Vol 1
The Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D.
Part 11 out of 15
CYR'IC _(St.)_, the saint to whom sailors address themselves. The St.
Elmo of the Welsh.
The weary mariners
Called on St. Cyric's aid.
Southey, _Madoc_, i. 4 (1805).
CYRUS AND TOM'YRIS. Cyrus, after subduing the eastern parts of Asia,
was defeated by Tomyris queen of the Massage'tae, in Scythia. Tomyris
cut off his head, and threw it into a vessel filled with human blood,
saying, as she did so, "There, drink thy fill." Dante refers to this
incident in his _Purgatory_, xii.
Consyder Syrus ...
He whose huge power no man might overthrowe,
Tom'yris Queen with great despite hath slowe,
His head dismembered from his mangled corps
Herself she cast into a vessel fraught
With clotted bloud of them that felt her force.
And with these words a just reward she taught--
"Drynke now thy fyll of thy desired draught."
T. Sackville, _A Mirrour for Magistraytes_
("The Complaynt," 1587).
CYTHERE'A, Venus; so called from Cythe'ra (now _Cerigo_), a
mountainous island of Laco'nia, noted for the worship of Aphrodite
(or Venus). The tale is that Venus and Mars, having formed an illicit
affection for each other, were caught in a delicate net made by
Vulcan, and exposed to the ridicule of the court of Olympus.
He the fate [_May sing_]
Of naked Mars with Cytherea chained.
Akenside, _Hymn to the Naiads_.
CYZE'NIS, the infamous daughter of Diomed, who killed every one
that fell into her clutches, and compelled fathers to eat their own
CZAR (_Casar_), a title first assumed in Russia by Ivan III., who,
in 1472, married a princess of the imperial Byzantine line. He also
introduced the double-headed black eagle of Byzantium as the national
symbol. The official style of the Russian autocrat is _Samoderjetz_.
D'ACUNHA (_Teresa_), waiting-woman to the countess of Glenallan.--Sir
W. Scott, _Antiquary_ (time, George III.).
DAFFODIL. When Perseph'one, the daughter of Deme'ter, was a little
maiden, she wandered about the meadows of Enna in Sicily, to gather
_white_ daffodils to wreathe into her hair, and being tired she fell
asleep. Pluto, the god of the infernal regions, carried her off to
become his wife, and his touch turned the white flowers to a golden
yellow. Some remained in her tresses till she reached the meadows of
Acheron, and falling off there grew into the asphodel, with which the
meadows thenceforth abounded.
She stepped upon Sicilian grass,
Demeter's daughter, fresh and fair,
A child of light, a radiant lass,
And gamesome as the morning air.
The daffodils were fair to see,
They nodded lightly on the lea;
Jean Ingelow, _Persephone_.
DAGON, sixth in order of the hierarchy of hell: (1) Satan, (2)
Beelzebub, (3) Moloch, (4) Chemos, (5) Thammuz, (6) Dagon. Dagon was
half man and half fish. He was worshipped in Ashdod, Gath, Ascalon,
Ekron, and Gaza (the five chief cities of the Philistines). When the
"ark" was placed in his temple, Dagon fell, and the palms of his hands
were broken off.
Next came ...
Dagon ... sea-monster, upward man
And downward fish.
Milton, _Paradise Lost_, i. 457, etc. (1665).
DAG'ONET (_Sir_), King Arthur's fool. One day Sir Dagonet, with two
squires, came to Cornwall, and as they drew near a well Sir Tristram
soused them all three in, and dripping wet made them mount their
horses and ride off, amid the jeers of the spectators (pt. ii. 60).
King Arthur loved Sir Dagonet passing well,
and made him knight; with his own hands; and
at every tournament he made King Arthur
laugh.--Sir T. Malory, _History of Prince Arthur_.
ii. 97 (1470).
Justice Shallow brags that he once personated Sir Dagonet, while he
was a student at Clement's Inn.--Shakespeare, 2 _Henry IV_. act ii.
sc. 2 (1598).
[Illustration] Tennyson deviates in this, as he does in so many other
instances, from the old romance. The _History_ says that King Arthur
made Dagonet knight "with his own hands," because he "loved him
passing well;" but Tennyson says that Sir Gawain made him "a
mock-knight of the Round Table."--_The Last Tournament_, 1.
DAISY MILLER. Mrs. Miller, _nouvelle riche_ and in true American
subjection to her children, is travelling abroad. Her only daughter is
pretty, unconventional, and so bent upon having "a good time" that she
falls under the most degrading suspicions. The climax of flirtation
and escapade is a midnight expedition to the Colosseum, where she
contracts Roman fever and dies.--Henry James, Jr., _Daisy Miller_
DAL'DAH, Mahomet's favorite white mule.
DALES (_The_), a family in Ashurst, where is laid the scene of _John
Ward, Preacher_: By Margaret Deland. The wife is prim and dictatorial,
a pattern housewife, with decided views upon all subjects, including
religion and matrimony. The husband wears a cashmere dressing-gown,
and spreads a red handkerchief over his white hair to protect his
white head from draughts; reads "A Sentimental Journey;" looks at his
wife before expressing an opinion, and makes an excellent fourth at
DALGA, a Lombard harlot, who tries to seduce young Goltho, but Goltho
is saved by his friend Ulfinore.--Sir W. Davenant, _Gondibert_ (died
DALGARNO (_Lord Malcolm of_), a profligate young nobleman, son of
the earl of Huntinglen (an old Scotch noble family). Nigel strikes
Dalgarno with his sword, and is obliged to seek refuge in "Alsatia."
Lord Dalgarno's villainy to the Lady Hermione excites the displeasure
of King James, and he would have been banished if he had not married
her. After this, Lord Dalgarno carries off the wife of John Christie,
the ship-owner, and is shot by Captain Colepepper, the Alsatian
bully.--Sir W. Scott, _Fortunes of Nigel_ (time, James I.).
DALGETTY (_Dugald_,) of Drumthwacket, the union of the soldado with
the pedantic student of Mareschal College. As a soldier of fortune,
he is retained in the service of the Earl of Monteith. The Marquis of
Argyll (leader of the parliamentary army) tried to tamper with him
in prison, but Dugald siezed him, threw him down, and then made his
escape, locking the marquis in the dungeon. After the battle, Captain
Dalgetty was knighted. This "Ritt-master" is a pedant, very conceited,
full of vulgar assurance, with a good stock of worldly knowledge,
a student of divinity, and a soldier who lets his sword out to the
highest bidder. The character is original and well drawn.--Sir W.
Scott, _Legend of Montrose_ (time, Charles I.).
The original of this character was Munro, who wrote an account of the
campaigns of that band of Scotch and English auxiliaries in the island
of Swinemuende, in 1630. Munro was himself one of the band. Dugald
Dalgetty is one of the best of Scott's characters.
DALTON (_Mrs._), housekeeper to the Rev. Mr. Staunton, of Willingham
Rectory.--Sir W. Scott, _Heart of Midlothian_ (time, George II.).
_Dalton (Beginald)_, the hero of a novel so called, by J. C. Lockhart
DALZELL (_General Thomas_), in the royal army of Charles II.--Sir W.
Scott, _Old Mortality_ (1816).
DAME DU LAC, Vivienne le Fay. The lake was "en la marche de la petite
Bretaigne;" "en ce lieu ... avoit la dame moult de belles maisons et
_Dame du Lac_, Sebille (2 _syl_.). Her castle was surrounded by a
river on which rested so thick a fog that no eye could see across it.
Alexander the Great abode a fortnight with this fay, to be cured of
his wounds, and King Arthur was the result of their amour. (This is
not in accordance with the general legends of this noted hero. See
ARTHUR.)--_Perceforest_, i. 42.
DAM'IAN, a squire attending on the Grand-Master of the Knights
Templars.--Sir W. Scott, _Ivanhoe_ (time, Richard I.).
DAMIOT'TI (_Dr. Baptisti_), a Paduan quack, who exhibits "the
enchanted mirror" to Lady Forester and Lady Bothwell. They see therein
the clandestine marriage and infidelity of Sir Philip Forester.--Sir
W. Scott, _Aunt Margaret's Mirror_ (time, William III.). DAMIS
_[Dah.me]_, son of Orgon and Elmire (2 _syl_.), impetuous and
self-willed.--Moliere, _Tartuffe_ (1664).
DAMN WITH FAINT PRAISE.
Damn with faint praise, assent with evil leer,
And without sneering, teach the rest to sneer.
Pope, _Prologue to the Satires_, 201 (1734).
DAMNO'NII, the people of Damnonium, that is, Cornwall, Devon,
Dorsetshire, and part of Somersetshire. This region, says Richard of
Cirencester (_Hist._ vi. 18), was much frequented by the Phoenician,
Greek, and Gallic merchants, for the metals with which it abounded,
and particularly for its tin.
Wherein our Devonshire now and fartherest Cornwal are,
The old Danmonii [_sic_] dwelt.
Drayton, _Polyolbion_, xvi. (1613).
DAMARIS WAINRIGHT. A woman richly endowed by Nature and fortune, whose
mother and brother have died insane. She comes to maidenly maturity
under the impression which strengthens into belief that madness is her
heritage. After long struggles she accepts the hand of one who has
striven steadily to combat what he considers a morbid conviction, and
makes ready for her marriage. When dressed for the ceremony she sits
down to await her bridegroom, and the image of herself in a tarnished
mirror suggests a train of melancholy musing that result in dementia.
"With a mad impulse to flee she sprang to her
feet just as Lincoln knocked.... For an instant
her failing reason struggled to consciousness
as a drowning swimmer writhes a last time
to the surface, and gasps a breath only to give it
up in futile bubbles that mark the spot where he
sank. With a supreme effort her vanquished
will for a moment re-asserted itself. She knew
her lover was at the door, and she knew also
that the feet of doom had been swifter than those
of the bridegroom.... She sprang forward
and threw open the door."
"'I am mad!' she shrieked, in a voice which
pierced to every corner of the old mansion."
Arlo Bates, _The Wheel of Fire_, (1885).
DAM'OCLES (3 _syl_.), a sycophant, in the court of Dionys'ius _the
Elder_, of Syracuse. After extolling the felicity of princes,
Dionysius told him he would give him experimental proof thereof.
Accordingly he had the courtier arrayed in royal robes and seated at
a sumptuous banquet, but overhead was a sword suspended by a single
horsehair, and Damocles was afraid to stir, lest the hair should break
and the sword fall on him. Dionysius thus intimated that the lives of
kings are threatened every hour of the day.--Cicero.
Let us who have not our names in the Red
Book console ourselves by thinking comfortably
how miserable our betters may be, and that
Damocles, who sits on satin cushions, and is
served on gold plate, has an awful sword hanging
over his head, in the shape of a bailiff, or
hereditary disease, or family secret.--Thackeray,
_Vanity Fair_, xlvii. (1848).
DAMOE'TAS, a herdsman. Theocritos and Virgil use the name in their
And old Damoetas loved to hear our song.
Milton, _Lycidas_ (1638).
DA'MON, a goat-herd in Virgil's third _Eclogue_. Walsh introduces the
same name in his _Eclogues_ also. Any rustic, swain, or herdsman.
DAMON AND DELIA. Damon asks Delia why she looks so coldly on him. She
replies because of his attention to Belvidera. He says he paid these
attentions at her own request, "to hide the secret of their mutual
love." Delia confesses that his prudence is commendable, but his
acting is too earnest. To this he rejoins that she alone holds his
heart; and Delia replies:
Tho' well I might your truth mistrust,
My foolish heart believes you just;
Reason this faith may disapprove,
But I believe, because I love.
DAMON AND MUSIDO'RA, two lovers who misunderstood each other. Musidora
was coy, and Damon thought her shyness indicated indifference; but one
day he saw her bathing, and his delicacy so charmed the maiden that
she at once accepted his proffered love.--Thomson, _The Seasons_
DA'MON AND PYTH'IAS. Damon, a senator of Syracuse, was by nature
hot-mettled, but was schooled by Pythagore'an philosophy into a Stoic
coldness and slowness of speech. He was a fast friend of the republic,
and when Dionysius was made "King" by a vote of the senate, Damon
upbraided the betrayers of his country, and pronounced Dionysius a
"tryant." For this he was seized, and as he tried to stab Dionysius,
he was condemned to instant death. Damon now craved respite for four
hours to bid farewell to his wife and child, but the request was
denied him. On his way to execution, his friend Pythias encountered
him, and obtained permission of Dionysius to become his surety, and to
die in his stead, if within four hours Damon did not return. Dionysius
not only accepted the bail, but extended the leave to six hours. When
Damon reached his country villa, Lucullus killed his horse to prevent
his return; but Damon, seizing the horse of a chance traveler, reached
Syracuse just as the executioner was preparing to put Pythias to
death. Dionysius so admired this proof of friendship, that he forgave
Damon, and requested to be taken into his friendship.
This subject was dramatized in 1571 by Richard Edwards, and again in
1825 by John Banim.
(The classic name of _Pythias_ is "Phintias.")
DAMSEL OR DAMOISEAU (in Italian, _donzel_; in Latin, _domisellus_);
one of the gallant youths domiciled in the _maison du roi._ These
youths were always sons of the greater vassals. Louis VII. _(le
Jeune_) was called "The Royal Damsel;" and at one time the royal
body-guard was called "The King's Damsells."
DAMSEL OF BRITTANY, Eleanor, daughter of Godffrey (second son of Henry
II. of England). After the death of Arthur, his sister Eleanor was
next in succession to the crown, but John, who had caused Arthur's
death, confined Eleanor in Bristol Castle, where she remained till her
death, in 1241.
D'AMVILLE (2 _syl_), "the atheist," with the assistance of Borachio,
murdered Montferrers, his brother, for his estates.--Cyril Tourneur,
_The Atheists Tragedy_ (seventeenth century).
DAM'YAN (2 _syl_.), the lover of May (the youthful bride of January, a
Lombard knight, 60 years of age).--Chaucer, _Canterbury Tales_ ("The
Merchant's Tale," 1388).
DAN OF THE HOWLET HIRST, the dragon of the revels at Kennaquhair
Abbey.--Sir W. Scott, _The Abbot_ and _The Monastery_ (time,
DAN'AE, (3 _syl_.), an Argive princess, visited by Zeus [Jupiter]
in the form of a shower of gold, while she was confined in an
DANAID (3 _syl_), Dan'aus had fifty daughters, called the Danaids or
Dana'ides. These fifty women married the fifty sons of AEgyptus, and
(with one exception) murdered their husbands on the night of their
espousals. For this crime they were doomed in Hades to pour water
everlastingly into sieves.
Let not your prudence, dearest, drowse or prove
The Danaid of a leaky vase.
Tennyson, _The Princess_, ii.
DANCING CHANCELLOR _(The)_, Sir Christopher Hatton, who attracted the
attention of Queen Elizabeth by his graceful dancing, at a masque. She
took him into favor, and made him both Chancellor and knight of the
Garter (died 1591).
[Illustration] Mons. de Lauzun, the favorite of Louis XIV., owed his
fortune to his grace in dancing in the king's quadrille.
Many more than one nobleman owed the favor he enjoyed at court to
the way he pointed his toe or moved his leg.--A. Dumas, _Taking the
DANCING WATER _(The)_, from the Burning forest. This water had the
power of imparting youthful beauty to those who used it. Prince Chery,
aided by a dove, obtained it for Fairstar.
The dancing water is the eighth wonder of
the world. It beautifies ladies, makes them
young again, and even enriches them.--Comtesse
D'Aunoy, _Fairy Tales_ ("Princess Fairstar,"
DANDIES _(The Prince of_), Beau Brummel (1778-1840).
DANDIN _(George)_, a rich French tradesman, who marries Ang'elique,
the daughter of Mons. le Baron de Sotenville, and has the "privilege"
of paying-off the family debts, maintaining his wife's noble parents,
and being snubbed on all occasions to his heart's content. He
constantly said to himself; in self-rebuke, _Vous Vavez voulu, vous
Vavez voulu, George Dandin!_ ("You have no one to blame but yourself!
you brought it on yourself, George Dandin!")
Vous l'avez voulu, vous l'avez voulu, George
Dandin! vous l'avez voulu!... vous avez juste-ment
ce que vous meritez.--Moliere, _George
Dandin_, i. 9 (1668).
"Well, _tu l'as voulu_, George Dandin," she said,
with a smile, "you were determined on it, and
must bear the consequences."--Percy Fitzgerald,
_The Parvenu Family_, ii. 262.
[Illustration] There is no such phrase in the comedy as _Tu l'as
voulu_, it is always _Vous Vavez voulu_.
DAN'DOLO _(Signor)_, a friend to Fazio in prosperity, but who turns
from him when in disgrace. He says:
Signor, I am paramount
In all affairs of boot and spur and hose;
In matters of the robe and cap supreme;
In ruff disputes, my lord, there's no appeal
From my irrefragibility.
Dean Milman, _Fazio_, ii. I (1815).
DANGEAU _(Jouer a la_), to play as good a hand at cards as Phillippe
de Courcillon, marquis de Dangeau (1638-1720).
DAN'GERFLELD _(Captain)_, a hired witness in the "Popish Plot"--Sir W.
Scott, _Pe-veril of the Peak_ (time, Charles II.).
DANGLE, a gentleman bitten with the theatrical mania, who annoys a
manager with impertinent flattery and advice. It is said that Thomas
Vaughan, a playwright of small reputation, was the original of this
character.--Sheridan, _The Critic_ (see act i. I), (1779).
DAN'HASCH, one of the genii who did not "acknowledge the great
When the Princess Badoura in her sleep was carried to the bed of
Prince Camaral'zaman that she might see him, Danhasch changed himself
into a flea, and bit her lip, at which Badoura awoke, saw the prince
sleeping by her side, and afterwards became his wife.--_Arabian
Nights_ ("Camaralzarnan and Badoura.")
DANIEL, son of Widow Lackitt; a wealthy Indian planter. A noodle of
the softest mould, whom Lucy Weldon marries for his money.--Thomas
Southern, _Oroonoko_ (1696).
DAN'NISCHEMEND, the Persian sorcerer, mentioned in Donnerhugel's
narrative.--Sir W. Scott, _Anne of Geierstein_ (time, Edward IV.).
DANTE AND BEATRICE. Some say that Beatrice, in Dante's _Divina
Commedia_, merely personifies faith; others think it a real character,
and say she was the daughter of the illustrious family of Portinari,
for whom the poet entertained a purely platonic affection. She
meets the poet after he has been dragged through the river Lethe
_(Purgatory_, xxxi), and conducts him through paradise. Beatrice
Portina'ri married Simon de Bardi, and died at the age of 24; Dante
was a few months older.
Some persons say that Dante meant Theology
By Beatrice, and not a mistress; I ...
Deem this a commentator's phantasy.
Byron, _Don Juan_, iii. 11 (1820).
DANTE AND-VIRGIL. Virgil was Dante's poetic master and is described as
conducting him through the realms depicted in the _Divina Commedia_.
[Illustration] The poet married Gemma, of the powerful house of
Donati. (See LOVES).
_Dante's Beard_. All the pictures of
Dante which I have seen represent him without any beard or hair on his
face at all; but in _Purgatory_, xxxi., Beatrice says to him, "Raise
thou thy beard, and lo! what sight shall do," _i.e._ lift up your face
and look about you; and he adds, "No sooner lifted I mine aspect up
... than mine eyes _(encountered)_ Beatrice."
DAN DEVEREUX. A young Nantucket giant married to a dainty waif rescued
in infancy from the sea. He marries her because she is homeless
and seems to be in love with him. When too late, he knows that his
affections are another's, and sees his wife fascinated by a handsome
French adventurer. In an attempt to elope, the wife and her lover are
wrecked, and clinging to a spar, are overtaken by the "terrible South
Breaker--plunging and rearing and swelling, a monstrous billow,
sweeping and swooping and rocking in." Dan in later life, marries
Georgia, his first love.--Harriet Prescott Spofford, _The South
DANTON OF THE CEVENNES. Pierre Seguier, prophet and preacher of
Magistavols, in France. He was a leader amongst the Camisards.
DANVERS _(Charles)_, an embyro barrister of the Middle Temple.--C.
Selby, _The Unfinished Gentleman._
DAPH'NE (2 _syl_.)., daughter of Sileno and Mysis, and sister of Nysa.
The favorite of Apollo while sojourning on earth in the character of a
shepherd lad named "Pol."--Kate O'Hara, _Midas_ (a burletta, 1778).
(In classic mythology Daphne fled from the amorous god, and escaped by
being changed into a laurel.)
DAPH'NIS, a beautiful Sicilian shepherd, the inventor of bucolic
poetry. He was a son of Mercury, and friend both of Pan and Apollo.
_Daph'nis_, the modest shepherd.
This is that modest shepherd, he
That only dare salute, but ne'er could be
Brought to kiss any, hold discourse, or sing,
Whisper, or boldly ask.
John Fletcher, _The Faithful Shepherdess_, i. 3
DAPH'NIS AND CHLO'E, a prose pastoral love story in Greek, by Longos
(a Byzantine), not unlike the tale of _The Gentle Shepherd_, by Allan
Ramsay. Gessner has also imitated the Greek romance in his idyll
called _Daphnis_. In this lovestory Longos says he was hunting in
Lesbos, and saw in a grove consecrated to the nymphs a beautiful
picture of children exposed, lovers plighting their faith, and the
incursions of pirates, which he now expresses and dedicates to Pan,
Cupid, and the nymphs. Daphnis, of course, is the lover of Chloe.
DAPPER, a lawyer's clerk, who went to Subtle "the alchemist," to be
supplied with "a familiar" to make him win in horse-racing, cards,
and all games of chance. Dapper is told to prepare himself for an
interview with the fairy queen by taking "three drops of vinegar in
at the nose, two at the mouth, and one at either ear," "to cry _hum_
thrice and _buzz_ as often."--Ben Jonson, _The Alchemist_ (1610).
DAPPLE, the donkey ridden by Sancho Panza, in Cervantes' romance of
_Don Quixote_ (1605-1615).
DARBY AND JOAN. This ballad, called _The Happy Old Couple_, is printed
in the _Gentleman's Magazine_, v. 153 (March, 1735).
It is also in Plumtre's _Collections of Songs_, 152 (Camb. 1805), with
the music. The words are sometimes attributed to Prior, and the first
line favors the notion: "Dear _Chloe_, while thus beyond measure;"
only Prior always spells _Chloe_ without "h."
Darby and Joan are an old-fashioned, loving couple, wholly averse to
change of any sort. It is generally said that Henry Woodfall was the
author of the ballad, and that the originals were John Darby (printer,
of Bartholomew Close, who died 1730) and his wife Joan. Woodfall
served his apprenticeship with John Darby.
"You may be a Darby _[Mr. Hardcastle]_, but
I'll be no Joan, I promise you."--Goldsmith, _She
Stoops to Conquer_, i. 1 (1773).
DRADU-LE'NA, the daughter of Foldath, general of the Fir-bolg or Belgae
settled in the south of Ireland. When Foldath fell in battle,
His soul rushed to the vale of Mona, to
Dardu-Lena's dream, by Dalrutho's stream,
where she slept, returning from the chase of
hinds. Her bow is near the maid, unstrung ...
Clothed in the beauty of youth, the love of
heroes lay. Dark-bending from ... the wood
her wounded father seemed to come. He appeared
at times, then hid himself in mist.
Bursting into tears, she arose. She knew that
the chief was low ... Thou wert the last of his
race, O blue-eyed Dardu-Lena!--Ossian, _Temora_,
DARGO, the spear of Ossian, son of Fingal.--Ossian, _Calthon and
DAR'GONET, "the Tall," son of Astolpho, and brother of Paradine.
In the fight provoked by Oswald against Duke Grondibert, which was
decided by four combatants against four, Dargonet was slain by Hugo
the Little. Dargonet and his brother were rivals for the love of
Lora.--Sir Wm. Davenant, _Gondibert_, i. (died 1668).
DARI'US AND HIS HORSE. The seven candidates for the throne of Persia
agreed that he should be king whose horse neighed first. As the horse
of Darius was the first to neigh, Darius was proclaimed king.
That brave Scythian
Who found more sweetness in his horse's neighing
Than all the Phrygian, Dorian, Lydian playing.
DARLEMONT, guardian and maternal uncle of Julio of Harancour; formerly
a merchant. He takes possession of the inheritance of his ward by foul
means, but is proud as Lucifer, suspicious, exacting, and tyrannical.
Every one fears him; no one loves him.--Thorn. Holcroft, _Deaf and
DARLING _(Grace)_, daughter of William Darling, lighthouse-keeper on
Longs tone, one of the Fame Islands. On the morning of September 7,
1838, Grace and her father saved nine of the crew of the _Forfarshire_
steamer, wrecked among the Fame Islands opposite Bamborough Castle
DARNAY _(Charles)_, the lover and afterwards the husband of Lucie
Manette. He bore a strong likeness to Sydney Carton, and was a noble
character, worthy of Lucie. His real name was Evremonde.--C. Dickens,
_A Tale of Two Cities_ (1859.)
DARNEL _(Aurelia)_, a character in Smollet's novel entitled _The
Adventures of Sir Launcelot Greaves_ (1760).
DARNLEY, the _amant_ of Charlotte [Lambert], in _The Hypocrite_, by
Isaac Bicker-staff. In Moliere's comedy of _Tartuffe_, Charlotte is
called "Mariane," and Darnley is "Valere."
DAR'-THULA, daughter of Colla, and "fairest of Erin's maidens." She
fell in love with Nathos, one of the three sons of Usnoth, lord of
Etha (in Argyllshire). Cairbar, the rebel was also in love with her,
but his suit was rejected. Nathos was made commander of King Cormac's
army at the death of Cuthullin, and for a time upheld the tottering
throne. But the rebel grew stronger and stronger, and at length found
means to murder the young king; whereupon the army under Nathos
deserted. Nathos was now obliged to quit Ireland, and Dar-Thula fled
with him. A storm drove the vessel back to Ulster, where Cairbar was
encamped, and Nathos, with his two brothers, being overpowered by
numbers, fell. Dar-Thula was arrayed as a young warrior; but when her
lover was slain "her shield fell from her arm; her breast of snow
appeared, but it was stained with blood. An arrow was fixed in
her side," and her dying blood was mingled with that of the three
brothers.--Ossian, _Dar-Thula_ (founded on the story of "Deirdri," i.
_Trans, of the Gaelic Soc_.)
DAR'TLE (_Rosa_), companion of Mrs. Steerforth. She loved Mrs.
Steerforth's son, but her love was not reciprocated. Miss Dartle is a
vindictive woman, noted for a scar on her lip, which told tales when
her temper was aroused. This scar was from a wound given by young
Steerforth, who struck her on the lip when a boy.--C. Dickens, _David
DARWIN'S MISSING LINK, the link between the monkey and man. According
to Darwin, the present host of animal life began from a few elemental
forms, which developed, and by natural selection propagated certain
types of animals, while others less suited to the battle of life died
out. Thus, beginning with the larvae of ascidians (a marine mollusc,)
we get by development to fish lowly organized (as the lancelet),
thence to ganoids and other fish, then to amphibians. From amphibians
we get to birds and reptiles, and thence to mammals, among which comes
the monkey, between which and man is a MISSING LINK.
DASHALL (_The Hon. Tom_), cousin of Tally-ho. The rambles and
adventures of these two blades are related by Pierce Egan (1821-1822).
D'ASUMAR (_Count_), an old Nestor who fancied nothing was so good as
when he was a young man.
"Alas! I see no men nowadays comparable
to those I knew heretofore; and the tournaments
are not performed with half the magnificence as
when I was a young man...." Seeing some
fine peaches served up, he observed, "In my
time, the peaches were much larger than they
are at present; natures degenerates every day."
"At that rate," said his companion, smiling,
"the peaches of Adam's time must have been
wonderfully large."--Lesage, _Gil Blas_, iv. 7
DAUGHTER (_The_), a drama by S. Knowles (1836). Marian, "daughter" of
Robert, once a wrecker, was betrothed to Edward, a sailor, who went on
his last voyage, and intended then to marry her. During his absence a
storm at sea arose, a body was washed ashore, and Robert went down to
plunder it. Marian went to look for her father and prevent his robbing
those washed ashore by the waves, when she saw in the dusk some one
stab a wrecked body. It was Black Norris, but she thought it was her
father. Robert being taken up Marian gave witness against him, and he
was condemned to death. Norris said he would save her father if she
would marry him, and to this she consented; but on the wedding day
Edward returned. Norris was taken up for murder, and Marian was saved.
DAUGHTER WITH HER MURDERED FATHER'S HEAD. Margaret Roper, daughter of
Sir Thomas More, obtained privately the head of her father, which had
been exposed for some days on London Bridge, and buried it in St.
Dunstan's Church, Canterbury (1835). Tennyson alludes to this in the
Morn broadened on the borders of the dark,
Ere I saw her who clasped in her last trance
Her murdered father's head.
The head of the young earl of Derwent-water was exposed on Temple Bar
in 1716. His wife drove in a cart under the the arch, and a man, hired
for the purpose, threw the young earl's head into the cart, that it
might be decently buried--Sir Bernard Burke Mdlle. de Sombreuil,
daughter of the Comte de Sombreuil, insisted on the sharing her
father's prison during the "Reign of Terror," and in accompanying him
to the guillotine.
DAUPHIN _(Le Grand_), Louis duc de Bourgoyne, eldest son of Louis
XIV., for whom was published the _Delphine Classics_ (1661-1711).
_Dauphin (Le Petit)_, son of the "Grand Dauphin" (1682-1712).
DAURA, daughter of Armin. She was betrothed to Armar, son of Armart,
Erath a rival lover having been rejected by her. One day, disguised as
an old grey-beard, Erath told Daura that he was sent to conduct her
to Armar, who was waiting for her. Without suspicion she followed her
guide, who took her to a rock in the midst of the sea, and there left
her. Her brother Arindal, returning from the chase, saw Erath on the
shore, and bound him to an oak; then pushing off the boat, went to
fetch back his sister. At this crisis Armar came up, and discharged
his arrow at Erath; but the arrow struck Arindal, and killed him. "The
boat broke in twain," and Armar plunged into the sea to rescue his
betrothed; but a "sudden blast from the hills struck him, and he sank
to rise no more." Daura was rescued by her father, but she haunted the
shore all night in a drenching rain. Next day "her voice grew very
feeble; it died away; and spent with grief, she expired." Ossian,
_Songs of Selma_.
DAVENANT (_Lord_), a bigamist. One wife was Marianne Dormer, whom
he forsook in three months. It was given out that he was dead, and
Marianne in time married Lord Davenant's son. His other wife was
Louisa Travers, who was engaged to Captain Dormer, but was told that
the Captain was faithless and had married another. When the villainy
of his lordship could be no longer concealed he destroyed himself.
_Lady Davenant_, one of the two wives of Lord Davenant. She was "a
faultless wife," with beauty to attract affection, and every womanly
_Charles Davenant_, a son of Lord Davenant, who married Marianne
Dormer, his father's wife.--Cumberland, _The Mysterious Husband_
_Davenant (Will)_, a supposed descendant from Shakespeare,
and Wildrake's friend,--Sir W. Scott, _Woodstock_ (time, the
DAVENPORT (_Colonel_), a Revolutionary veteran who, fighting the
battle of Long Island over again in Parson Cushing's family, admits
that General Washington poured out "a terrible volley of curses."
"And he swore?" objects Parson Gushing.
"It was not profane swearing. It was not taking GOD'S name in vain,
for it sent us back as if we had been chased by lightning. It was
an awful hour, and he saw it. It was life or death; country or no
country."--Harriet Beecher Stowe, _Poganuc People_ (1878).
DAVID, in Dryden's satire of _Absalom and Achitophel_ is meant for
Charles II. As David's beloved son Absalom rebelled against him,
so the Duke of Monmouth rebelled against his father Charles II. As
Achitophel was a traitorous counsellor to David, so was the Earl of
Shaftesbury to Charles II. As Hushai outwitted Achitophel, so Hyde
(duke of Eochester) outwitted the Earl of Shaftesbury, etc., etc.
Thy longing country's darling and desire,
Their cloudy pillar, and their guardian fire ...
The people's prayer, the glad diviner's theme,
The young men's vision and the old men's dream.
Dryden, _Absalom and Achitophel_, i. (1681).
_David_, king of North Wales, eldest son of Owen, by his second wife.
Owen died in 1169. David married Emma Plantagenet, a Saxon princess.
He slew his brother Hoel and his half-brother Yorworth (son of Owen
by his first wife), who had been set aside from the succession in
consequence of a blemish in the face. He also imprisoned his brother
Rodri, and drove others into exile. Madoc, one of his brothers, went
to America, and established there a Welsh colony.--Southey, _Madoc_
DAVID SOVINE. Witness in a murder case in Edward Eggleston's novel
_The Graysons._ He is put upon the stand and tells a plausible story
of "the shooting," which he claims to have seen. The prosecutor then
hands him over to the prisoner's counsel, Abraham Lincoln, whose
cross-examination of the wretched man concludes thus:
"Why does David Sovine go to all this trouble to perjure himself? Why
does he wish to swear away the life of that young man who never did
him any harm? Because that witness shot and killed George Lockwood
himself. I move your honor that David Sovine be arrested at once for
DAVID SWAN. A native of New Hampshire, born of respectable parents who
has had a "classic finish" by a year at Grilmanton Academy. He lies
down to sleep at noon of a Summer's day, pillowing his head on a
bundle of clothing. While sound asleep in the shade, he is passed by
many people on the road. Five or six pause to survey the youth and
comment upon him. Awakened by the stage-coach, he mounts to the top,
and bowls away, unconscious that a phantom of Wealth, of Love and
of Death had visited him in the brief hour since he lay down to
sleep.--Nathaniel Hawthorn, _Twice-told Tales_, (1851.)
_David (St.)_, son of Xantus, prince of Cereticu _(Cardiganshire)_ and
the nun Malearia. He was the uncle of King Arthur. St. David first
embraced the ascetic life in the Isle of Wight, but subsequently
removed to Menevia, in Pembrokeshire, where he founded twelve
convents. In 577 the archbishop of Caerleon resigned his see to
him, and St. David removed the seat of it to Menevia, which was
subsequently called St. David's and became the metropolis of Wales. He
died at the age of 146, in the year 642. The waters of Bath "owe their
warmth and salutary qualities to the benediction of this saint."
Drayton says he lived in the valley of Ewias (2 _syl_.), between the
hills of Hatterill, in Monmouthshire.
Here in an aged cell with moss and ivy grown,
In which not to this day the sun hath ever shown.
That reverend British saint in zealous ages past,
To contemplation lived.
_Polyolbion_, iv. (1612.)
DAVID AND JONATHAN, inseparable friends. The allusion is to David the
Psalmist and Jonathan the son of Saul. David's lamentation at the
death of Jonathan was never surpassed in pathos and beauty.--2
_Samuel_, i. 19-27.
DAVIE DEBET, debt.
So ofte thy neighbors banquet in thy hall,
Till Davie Debet in thy parler stand,
And bids thee welcome to thine own decay.
G. Gascoigne, _Magnum Vectigal, etc_. (died 1775).
DAVIE OF STENHONSE, a friend of Hobbie Elliott.--Sir W. Scott, _The
Black Dwarf_ (time, Anne).
DAVIES (_John_), an old fisherman employed by Joshua Geddes the
quaker.--Sir W. Scott, _Redgauntlet_ (time, George III).
DA'VUS, a plain, uncouth servitor; a common name for a slave in Greek
and Roman plays, as in the _Andria_ of Terence.
His face made of brass, like a vice in a game.
His gesture like Davus, whom Terence doth name.
T. Tusser, _Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry_, liv. (1557).
_Davus sum, non Oedipus._ I am a homely man, and do not understand
hints, innuendoes, and riddles, like Oedipus. Oedipus was the
Theban who expounded the riddle of the Sphinx, that puzzled all his
countrymen. Davus was the stock name of a servant or slave in Latin
comedies. The proverb is used by Terence, _Andria_, 1, 2, 23.
DAVY, the varlet of Justice Shallow, who so identifies himself with
his master that he considers himself half host half varlet. Thus when
he seats Bardolph and Page at table, he tells them they must take
"his" good will for their assurance of welcome.--Shakespeare, 2 _Henry
DAW (_Sir David_), a rich, dunder-headed baronet of Monmouthshire,
without wit, words, or worth, but believing himself somebody, and
fancying himself a sharp fellow, because his servants laugh at his
good sayings, and his mother calls him a wag. Sir David pays his suit
to Miss [Emily] Tempest; but as the affections of the young lady are
fixed on Henry Woodville, the baron goes to the wall.--Cumberland,
_The Wheel of Fortune_ (1779).
_Daw (Marjorie)_ Edward Delaney, writing to another young fellow, John
Flemming, confined in town in August by a broken leg, interests him
in a charming girl, Marjorie Daw by name, whom he has met in his
(Delaney's) summering-place. His description of her ways, sayings and
looks so works upon the imagination of the invalid that he falls madly
in love with her--_without_ sight. As soon as he can travel he rushes
madly down to "The Pines" where his friend is staying, and finds
instead of Delaney a letter:
... "I tried to make a little romance to interest you, something
soothing and idyllic, and by Jove! I've done it only too well ... I
fly from the wrath to come--when you arrive! For, O, dear Jack, there
isn't any colonial mansion on the other side of the road, there isn't
any piazza, there isn't any hammock,--there isn't any Marjorie Daw!"
Thomas Bailey Aldrich, _Marjorie Daw_ (1873).
DAWFYD, "the one-eyed" freebooter chief.--Sir W. Scott, _The
Betrothed_ (time, Henry II.).
DAWKINS (_Jack_), known by the sobriquet of the "Artful Dodger." He
is one of Fagin's tools. Jack Dawkins is a young scamp of unmitigated
villainy, and full of artifices, but of a cheery, buoyant temper.--C.
Dickens, _Oliver Twist_, viii. (1837).
DAWSON (_Bully_), a London sharper, bully, and debauchee of the
seventeenth century.--See _Spectator_, No. 2.
Bully Dawson kicked by half the town, and half the town kicked by
Bully Dawson.--Charles Lamb.
_Dawson (Jemmy)._ Captain James Dawson was one of the eight officers
belonging to the Manchester volunteers in the service of Charles
Edward, the young pretender. He was a very amiable young man, engaged
to a young lady of family and fortune, who went in her carriage to
witness his execution for treason. When the body was drawn, _i.e._
embowelled, and the heart thrown into the fire, she exclaimed, "James
Dawson!" and expired. Shenstone has made this the subject of a tragic
Young Dawson was a gallant youth,
A brighter never trod the plain;
And well he loved one charming maid,
And dearly was he loved again.
Shenstone, _Jemmy Dawson_.
_Dawson (Phoebe)_, "the pride of Lammas Fair," courted by all the
smartest young men of the village, but caught "by the sparkling
eyes" and ardent words of a tailor. Phoebe had by him a child before
marriage, and after marriage he turned a "captious tyrant and a noisy
sot." Poor Phoebe drooped, "pinched were her looks, as one who pined
for bread," and in want and sickness she sank into an early tomb. This
sketch is one of the best in Crabbe's _Parish Register_ (1807).
DAY (_Justice_), a pitiable hen-pecked husband, who always addresses
his wife as "duck" or "duckie."
_Mrs. Day_, wife of the "justice," full of vulgar dignity,
overbearing, and loud. She was formerly the kitchen-maid of her
husband's father; but being raised from the kitchen to the parlor,
became my lady paramount.
In the comedy from which this farce is taken, "Mrs. Day" was the
kitchen-maid in the family of Colonel Careless, and went by the name
of Gillian. In her exalted state she insisted on being addressed as
"Your honor" or "Your ladyship."
Margaret Woffington [1718-1760], in "Mrs. Day," made no scruples to
disguise her beautiful face by drawing on it the lines of deformity,
and to put on the tawdry habiliments and vulgar manners of an old
hypocritical city vixen.--Thomas Davies.
_Abel Day_, a puritanical prig, who can do nothing without Obadiah.
This "downright ass" (act i. I) aspires to the hand of the heiress
Arabella.--T. Knight, _The Honest Thieves_.
This farce is a mere _rechauffe_ of _The Committee_, a comedy by
the Hon. Sir R. Howard (1670). The names of "Day," "Obadiah," and
"Arabella" are the same.
_Day (Ferquhard)_, the absentee from the clan Chattan ranks at the
conflict.--Sir W. Scott, _Fair Maid of Perth_ (time, Henry IV.).
DAY OF THE DUPES, November 11, 1630. The dupes were Marie de Medicis,
Anne of Austria, and Gaston, duc d'Orleans, who were outwitted by
Cardinal Richelieu. The plotters had induced Louis XIII. to dismiss
his obnoxious minister, whereupon the cardinal went at once to resign
the seals of office; the king repented, re-established the cardinal,
and he became more powerful than ever.
DAYS RECURRENT IN THE LIVES OF GREAT MEN.
BECKET. Tuesday was Becket's day. He was born on a Tuesday, and on
a Tuesday was assassinated. He was baptized on a Tuesday, took his
flight from Northampton on a Tuesday, withdrew to France on a Tuesday,
had his vision of martydom on a Tuesday, returned to England on a
Tuesday, his body was removed from the crypt to the shrine on a
Tuesday, and on Tuesday (April 13, 1875) Cardinal Manning consecrated
the new church dedicated to St. Thomas a Becket.
CROMWELL'S day was September 3. On September 3, 1650, he won the
battle of Dunbar; on September 3, 1651, he won the battle of
Worcester; on September 3, 1658, he died.
HAROLD'S day was October 14. It was his birthday, and also the day of
his death. William the Conqueror was born on the same day, and, on
October 14, 1066, won England by conquest.
NAPOLEON'S day was August 15, his birthday; but his his "lucky" day,
like that of his nephew, Napoleon III., was the 2nd of the month. He
was made consul for life on August 2, 1802; was crowned December
2, 1804; won his greatest battle, that of Austerlitz, for which
he obtained the title of "Great," December 2, 1805; married the
archduchess of Austria, April 2, 1810; etc.
NAPOLEON III. The _coup d'etat_ was December 2, 1851. Louis Napoleon
was made emperor December 2, 1852; he opened, at Saarbrueck, the
Franco-German war August 2, 1870; and surrendered his sword to William
of Prussia, September 2, 1870.
DAZZLE, in _London Assurance_, by D. Boucicault.
"Dazzle" and "Lady Gay Spanker" "act
themselves," and will never be dropped out of
the list of acting plays.--Percy Fitzgerald.
DE BOURGO (_William_), brother of the earl of Ulster and commander of
the English forces that defeated Felim O'Connor (1315) at Athunree, in
Why tho' fallen her brother kerne [_Irish infantry_]
Beneath De Bourgo's battle stern.
Campbell, _O'Connor's Child_.
DE COURCY, in a romance called _Women_, by the Rev. C.R. Maturin. An
Irishman, made up of contradictions and improbabilities. He is in love
with Zaira, a brilliant Italian, and also with her unknown daughter,
called Eva Wentworth, a model of purity. Both women are blighted by
his inconstancy. Eva dies, but Zaira lives to see De Courcy perish of
DE GARD, a noble staid gentleman, newly lighted from his travels;
brother of Oria'na, who "chases" Mi'rabel "the wild goose," and
catches him.--Beaumont and Fletcher, _The Wild-goose Chase_ (1652).
DE L'EPEE (_Abbe_). Seeing a deaf and dumb lad abandoned in the
streets of Paris, he rescues him, and brings him up under the name of
Theodore. The foundling turned out to be Julio, count of Harancour.
"In your opinion, who is the greatest genius that France has ever
produced?" "Science would decide for D'Alembert, Nature [_would_] say
Buffon; Wit and Taste [_would_] present Voltaire; and Sentiment plead
for Rousseau; but Genius and Humanity cry out for De l'Epee, and him
I call the best and greatest of human creatures."--Th. Holcroft, _The
Deaf and Dumb_, iii. 2. (1785).
DE VALMONT (_Count_), father of Florian and uncle of Geraldine. During
his absence in the wars, he left his kinsman, the Baron Longueville,
guardian of his castle; but under the hope of coming into the
property, the baron set fire to the castle, intending thereby to kill
the wife and her infant boy. When De Valmont returned and knew his
losses, he became a wayward recluse, querulous, despondent, frantic at
times, and at times most melancholy. He adopted an infant "found in a
forest," who turned out to be his son. His wife was ultimately found,
and the villainy of Longueville was brought to light.--W. Dimond, _The
Foundling of the Forest._
Many "De Valmonts" I have witnessed in fifty-four years, but have
never seen the equal of Joseph George Holman [1764-1817].--Donaldson.
DEAF AND DUMB (_The_), a comedy by Thomas Holcroft. "The deaf and
dumb" boy is Julio, count of Harancour, a ward of M. Darlemont, who,
in order to get possession of his ward's property, abandons him when
very young in the streets of Paris. Here he is rescued by the Abbe De
l'Epee, who brings him up under the name of Theodore. The boy being
recognized by his old nurse and others, Darlemont confesses his crime,
and Julio is restored to his rank and inheritance.--Th. Holcroft, _The
Deaf and Dumb_ (1785).
DEAN OF ST. PATRICK (_The_), Jonathan Swift, who was appointed to the
deanery in 1713, and retained it till his death. (1667-1745).
DEANS (_Douce Davie_), the cowherd at Edinburgh, noted for his
religious peculiarities, his magnanimity in affection, and his
_Mistress Rebecca Deans_, Douce Davie's second wife.
_Jeanie Deans_, daughter of Douce Davie Deans, by his first wife. She
marries Reuben Butler, the Presbyterian minister. Jeanie Deans is
a model of good sense, strong affection, resolution, and
disinterestedness. Her journey from Edinburgh to London is as
interesting as that of _Elizabeth_ from Siberia to Moscow, or of
_Effie [Euphemia] Deans_, daughter of Douce Davie Deans, by his second
wife. She is betrayed by George [afterward Sir George] Staunton
(called _Geordie Robertson_) and imprisoned for child-murder. Jeanie
goes to the queen and sues for pardon, which is vouchsafed to her,
and Staunton does what he can to repair the mischief he has done by
marrying Effie, who thus becomes Lady Staunton. Soon after this Sir
George is shot by a gypsy boy, who proves to be his own son, and
Effie retires to a convent on the Continent.--Sir W. Scott, _Heart of
Midlothian_ (time, George II).
[Illustration] J.E.Millais has a picture of Effie Deans keeping tryst
with George Staunton.
[Illustration] The prototype of Jeanie Deans was Helen Walker, to
whose memory Sir W. Scott erected a tombstone in Irongray churchyard
DEAN (Elder). Rigid and puritaincal church, official who brings a
charge of heretical opinions and blacksliding against his pastor's
wife in _John Ward, Preacher_, Margaret Deland (1888).
DEATH OR MORS. So did Tennyson call Sir Ironside the Red Knight of the
Red Lands, who kept Lyonors (for Liones) captive in Castle Perilous.
The name "Mors," which is Latin, is very inconsistent with a
purely British tale, and of course does not appear in the original
story.--Tennyson, _Idylls_ ("Gareth and Lynette"); Sir T. Malory,
_History of Prince Arthur_, i. 134-137 (1470).
DEATH FROM STRANGE CAUSES.
AEschylus was killed by the fall of a tortoise on his head from the
claws of an eagle in the air.--Pliny, _Hist_. vii. 7.
Agath'ocles (4 _syl_.), tyrant of Sicily, was killed by a tooth-pick,
at the age of 95.
Anacreon was choked by a grape stone.--Pliny, _Hist_. vii. 7.
Bassus (_Q. Lucilius_) died from the prick of a fine needle in his
Chalchas, the soothsayer, died of laughter at the thought of his
having outlived the time predicted for his death.
Charles VIII., conducting his queen into a tennis-court, struck his
head against the lintel, and it caused his death.
Fabius, the Roman praetor, was choked by a single goat-hair in the
milk which he was drinking.--Pliny, _Hist_. vii. 7.
Frederick Lewis, prince of Wales, died from the blow of a cricket
Itadach died of thirst in the harvest field, because (in observance of
the rule of St. Patrick) he refused to drink a drop of anything.
Louis VI. met with his death from a pig running under his horse, and
causing it to stumble. Margutte died of laughter on seeing a monkey
try ing to pull on a pair of his boots.
Philom'enes (4 _syl_.) died of laughter at seeing an ass eating the
figs provided for his own dessert.--Valerius Maximus.
Placut (_Phillipot_) dropped down dead while in the act of paying a
bill.--Backaberry the elder.
Quenelault, a Norman physician of Montpellier, died from a slight
wound made in his hand in the extraction of a splinter.
Saufeius (_Spurius_) was choked supping up the albumen of a
Zeuxis, the painter, died of laughter at sight of a hag which he had
DEATH RIDE (_The_), the charge of the Light Brigade at Balaklava,
October 25, 1854. In this action 600 English horsemen, under the
earl of Cardigan, charged a Russian force of 5,000 calvary and six
batallions of infantry. They galloped through the battery of thirty
guns, cutting down the artillerymen, and through the calvary, but then
discovered the batallions and cut their way back again. Of the 670
who advanced to this daring charge, not 200 returned. This reckless
exploit was the result of some misunderstanding in an order from the
commander-in-chief. Tennyson has a poem on the subject called _The
Charge of the Light Brigade_.
For chivalrous devotion and daring, "the Death Ride" of the Light
Brigade will not easily be paralleled.--Sir Edw. Creasy, _The Fifteen
Decisive Battles_ (preface).
DEB'ON, one of the companions of Brute. According to British fable,
Devonshire is a corruption of "Debon's-share", or the share of the
country assigned to Debon.
DEBORAH DEBBITCH, governante at Lady Peveril's--Sir W. Scott, _Peveril
of the the Peak_ (time, Charles II.).
DEBORAH WOODHOUSE. The practical sister of the spinster pair who
cherish (respectively) a secret attachment for Mr. Dermer. Miss
Deborah is an admirable cook, and an affectionate aunt and considers
that in religion a woman ought to think just as her husband
does.--Margaret Deland, _John Ward, Preacher_ (1888).
DECEM SCRIPTORES, a collection of ten ancient chronicles on English
history, edited by Twysden and John Selden. The names of the
chroniclers are Simeon of Durham, John of Hexham, Richard of Hexham,
Ailred of Rieval, Ralph De Diceto, John Brompton of Jorval, Gervase
of Canterbury, Thomas Stubbs, William Thorn of Canterbury, and Henry
Knighton of Leicester.
DECEMBER. A mother laments in the
"Darkest of all Decembers
Ever her life has known,"
the death of two sons, one of whom fell in battle, while the other
perished at sea.
"Ah, faint heart! in thy anguish
What is there left to thee?
Only the sea intoning
Only the wainscot-mouse
Only the wild wind moaning
Over the lonely house!"
Thomas Bailey Aldrich, _Poems_, (1882).
DE'CIUS, friend of Antin'ous (4 _syl_.).--Beaumont and Fletcher, _Laws
of Candy_ (1647).
DEDLOCK _(Sir Leicester), bart_., who has a general opinion that the
world might get on without hills, but would be "totally done up"
without Dedlocks. He loves Lady Dedlock, and believes in her
implicity. Sir Leicester is honorable and truthful, but intensely
prejudiced, immovably obstinate, and proud as "county" can make a man;
but his pride has a most dreadful fall when the guilt of Lady Dedlock
_Lady Dedlock_, wife of Sir Leicester, beautiful, cold, and apparently
heartless; but she is weighed down with this terrible secret, that
before marriage she had had a daughter by Captain Hawdon. This
daughter's name is Esther [Summerson] the heroine of the novel.
_Volumnia Dedlock_, cousin of Sir Leicester. A "young" lady of 60,
given to rouge, pearl-powder, and cosmetics. She has a habit of prying
into the concerns of others.--C. Dickens, _Bleak House_ (1853).
DEE'S SPEC'ULUM, a mirror, which Dr. John Dee asserted was brought to
him by the angels Raphael and Gabriel. At the death of the doctor it
passed into the possession of the Earl of Peterborough, at Drayton;
then to Lady Betty Grermaine, by whom it was given to John, last duke
of Argyll. The duke's grandson (Lord Frederic Campbell) gave it to
Horace Walpole; and in 1842 it was sold, at the dispersion of the
curiosities of Strawberry Hill, and bought by Mr. Smythe Pigott.
At the sale of Mr. Pigott's library, in 1853, it passed into the
possession of the late Lord Londesborough. A writer in _Notes and
Queries_ (p. 376, November 7, 1874) says, it "has now been for many
years in the British Museum," where he saw it "some eighteen years
This magic speculum is a flat _polished mineral, like cannel coal_, of
a circular form, fitted with a handle.
DEERSLAYER (_The_), the title of a novel by J.F. Cooper, and the
nickname of its hero, Natty or Nathaniel Bumppo. He is a model
uncivilized man, honorable, truthful, and brave, pure of heart and
DEERFIELD. The particulars of the captivity of the Williams family
of Deerfield, (Mass.), are told by John Williams, the head of the
household. The Indians entered the town before dawn Feb. 29, 1703,
broke into the house, murdered two children and a servant and carried
the rest into the wilderness. Mrs. Williams being weak from a recent
illness, was killed on the journey.--John Williams, _The Redeemed
Captive Returning to Zion_ (1707).
DEFARGE (_Mons._), keeper of a wine shop in the Faubourg St. Antoine,
in Paris. He is a bull-necked, good-humored, but implacable-looking
_Mde. Defarge_, his wife, a dangerous woman, with great force of
character; everlastingly knitting.
Mde. Defarge had a watchful eye that seldom seemed to look at
anything.--C. Dickens, _A Tale of Two Cities_, i. 5 (1859).
DEFENDER OF THE FAITH, the title first given to Henry VIII, by Pope
Leo X., for a volume against Luther, in defence of pardons, the
papacy, and the seven sacraments. The original volume is in the
Vatican, and contains this inscription in the king's handwriting;
_Anglorum rex Henricus, Leoni X. mittit hoc opus et fidei testem et
amicitiae_; whereupon the pope (in the twelfth year of his reign)
conferred upon Henry, by bull, the title "Fidei Defensor," and
commanded all Christians so to address him. The original bull was
preserved by Sir Robert Cotton, and is signed by the pope,
four bishop-cardinals, fifteen priest-cardinals, and eight
deacon-cardinals. A complete copy of the bull, with its seals and
signatures, may be seen in Selden's _Titles of Honor_, v. 53-57
DEFOE writes _The History of the Plague of London_ as if he had been
a personal spectator, but he was only three years old at the the time
DEGGIAL, antichrist. The Mohammedan writers say he has but one eye and
one eyebrow, and on his forehead is written CAFER ("infidel")
Chilled with terror, we concluded that the Deggial, with his
exterminating angels, had sent forth their plagues on the earth.--W.
Beckford, _Vathek_ (1784).
DEIRD'RI, an ancient Irish story similar to the _Dar-Thula_ of Ossian.
Conor, king of Ulster, puts to death by treachery the three sons
of Usnach. This leads to the desolating war against Ulster, which
terminates in the total destruction of Eman. This is one of the three
tragic stories of the Irish, which are: (1) The death of the children
of Touran (regarding Tuatha de Danans); (2) the death of the children
of Lear or Lir, turned into swans by Aoife; (3) the death of the
children of Usnach (a "Milesian" story).
DEK'ABRIST, a Decembrist, from _Dekaber_, the Russian for December.
It denotes those persons who suffered death or captivity for the part
they took in the military conspiracy which broke out in St. Petersburg
in December, 1825, on the accession of Czar Nicholas to the throne.
DELA'DA, the tooth of Buddah, preserved in the Malegawa temple at
Kandy. The natives guard it with the greatest jealousy, from a belief
that whoever possesses it acquires the right to govern Ceylon. When
the English (in 1815) obtained possession of this palladium, the
natives submitted without resistance.
DELASERRE (_Captain Philip_), a friend of Harry Bertram.--Sir W.
Scott, _Guy Mannering_ (time, George II.).
DE'LIA, Diana; so called from the island Delos, where she was born.
Similarly, Apollo was called _Delius_. Milton says that Eve, e'en
In gait surpassed and goddess-like deport,
Though not as she with bow and quiver armed.
_Paradise Lost_, ix. 338, etc. (1665).
_Delia_, any female sweetheart. She is one of the shepherdesses in
Virgil's _Eclogues_. Tibullus, the Roman poet, calls his lady-love
"Delia," but what her real name was is not certain.
_Delia_, the lady-love of James Hammond's elegies, was Miss Dashwood,
who died in 1779. She rejected his suit, and died unmarried. In one of
the elegies the poet imagines himself married to her, and that they
were living happily together till death, when pitying maids would tell
of their wondrous loves.
DELIAN KING (_The_). Apollo or the sun is so called in the Orphic
Oft as the Delian king with Sirius holds
The central heavens.
Akenside, _Hymn to the Naiads_ (1767).
DELIGHT OF MANKIND (_The_), Titus the Roman emperor, A.D.40, (79-81).
Titus indeed gave one short evening gleam,
More cordial felt, as in the midst it spread
Of storm and horror: "The Delight of Men."
Thomson, _Liberty_, in. (1725).
DELLA CRUSCA SCHOOL, originally applied in 1582 to a society in
Florence, established to purify the national language and sift from it
all its impurities; but applied in England to a brotherhood of poets
(at the close of the last century) under the leadership of Mrs.
Piozzi. This school was conspicuous for affectation and high-flown
panegyrics on each other. It was stamped out by Gifford, in _The
Baviad_, in 1794, and _The Moeviad_, in 1796. Robert Merry, who signed
himself _Della Crusca_, James Cobb, a farce-writer, James Boswell
(biographer of Dr. Johnson), O'Keefe, Morton, Reynolds, Holcroft,
Sheridan, Colman the younger, Mrs. H. Cowley, and Mrs. Robinson were
its best exponents.
DEL'PHINE, (2 _syl._), the heroine and title of a novel by Mde. de
Stael. Delphine is a charming character, who has a faithless lover,
and dies of a broken heart. This novel, like _Corinne_, was written
during her banishment from France by Napoleon I., when she travelled
in Switzerland and Italy. It is generally thought that "Delphine" was
meant for the authoress herself (1802).
DELPHINE CLASSICS (_The_), a set of Latin classics edited in France
for the use of the grand dauphin (son of Louis XIV.). Huet was chief
editor, assisted by Montausier and Bossuet. They had thirty-nine
scholars working under them. The indexes of these classics are very
DELTA [Illustration] of _Blackwood_ is D.M.Moir (1798-1851).
DEL'VILLE (2 _syl_.), one of the guardians of Cecilia. He is a man
of wealth and great ostentation, with a haughty humility and
condescending pride, especially in his intercourse with his social
inferiors.--Miss Burney, _Cecilia_ (1782). DEME'TIA, South Wales; the
inhabitants are called Demetians.
Denevoir, the seat of the Demetian king.
Drayton, _Polyolbion_, v. (1612).
DEME'TRIUS, a young Athenian, to whom Egeus (3 _syl_.) promised his
daughter Hermia in marriage. As Hermia loved Lysander, she refused to
marry Demetrius, and fled from Athens with Lysander. Demetrius went in
quest of her, and was followed by Helena, who doted on him. All four
fell asleep, and "dreamed a dream" about the fairies. On waking,
Demetrius became more reasonable. He saw that Hermia disliked him, but
that Helena loved him sincerely, so he consented to forego the one and
take to wife the other. When Egeus, the father of Hermia, found out
how the case stood, he consented to the union of his daughter with
Lysander.--Shakespeare, _Midsummer Night's Dream_ (1592).
_Deme'trius_, in _The Poetaster_, by Ben Jonson, is meant for John
Marston (died 1633).
_Deme'trius_, (4 _syl_.), son of King Antig'onus, in love with Celia,
_alias_ Enan'the.--Beaumont and Fletcher, _The Humorous Lieutenant_
_Deme'trius_, a citizen of Greece during the reign of Alexius
Comnenus.--Sir W. Scott, _Count Robert of Paris_ (time, Rufus).
DEMIURGUS, that mysterious agent which, according to Plato, made the
world and all that it contains. The Logos or "Word" of St. John's
Gospel (ch. i. I) is the demiurgus of platonizing Christians.
DEMOC'RITOS (in Latin _Democritus_), the laughing or scoffing
philosopher, the Friar Bacon of his age. To "dine with Democ'ritos"
is to go without dinner, the same as "dining with Duke Humphrey," or
"dining with the cross-legged knights."
People think that we [_authors_] often dine with Democritos, but there
they are mistaken. There is not one of the fraternity who is not
welcome to some good table.--Lesage, _Gil Blas_, xii. 7 (1735).
DEMOCRITUS JUNIOR, Robert Burton, author of _The Anatomy of
DEMOD'OCOS (in Latin _Demodocus_), bard of Alcin'ous (4 _syl_.) king
of the Phaea'cians.
Such as the wise Demodicos once told
In solemn songs at King Alcinous' feast,
While sad Ulysses' soul and all the rest
Are held, with his melodious harmony,
In willing chains and sweet captivity.
Milton, _Vacation Exercise_ (1627).
DEM'OGOR'GON, tyrant of the elves and fays, whose very name inspired
terror; hence Milton speaks of "the dreaded name of Demogorgon"
(_Paradise Lost_, ii. 965). Spenser says he "dwells in the deep abyss
where the three fatal sisters dwell" (_Faery Queen_, iv. 2); but
Ariosto says he inhabited a splendid palace on the Himalaya Mountains.
Demogorgon is mentioned by Statius in the _Thebaid_, iv. 516.
He's the first-begotten of Beelzebub, with a face as terrible as
Demogorgon.--Dryden, _The Spanish Fryar_, v. 2 (1680).
DEMON. Increase Mather tells a long and circumstantial story of _The
Demon at William Morse His House_, time of visitation being 1679.
"The true story of these strange disturbances is as yet not certainly
known," he says. "Some (as has been hinted), did suspect Morse's wife
to be guilty of witchcraft."--Increase Mather, _An Essay for the
Eecording of Illustrious Providences_ (1681). DEMOPH'OON (4 _syl._)
was brought up by Demeter, who anointed him with ambrosia and plunged
him every night into the fire. One day, his mother, out of curiosity,
watched the proceeding, and was horror-struck; whereupon Demeter told
her that her foolish curiosity had robbed her son of immortal youth.
[Illustration] This story is also told of Isis.--Plutarch, _De Isid.
et Osirid_., xvi. 357.
[Illustration] A similar story is told of Achilles. His mother Thet'is
was taking similar precautions to render him immortal, when his father
Pe'leus (2 _syl_.) interfered.--Apollonius Rhodius, _Argonautic Exp_.,
DEMOS'THENES OF THE PULPIT. Dr. Thomas Rennell, dean of Westminster,
was so called by William Pitt (1753-1840).
DENDIN (_Peter_), an old man, who had settled more disputes than all
the magistrates of Poitiers, though he was no judge. His plan was to
wait till the litigants were thoroughly sick of their contention,
and longed to end their disputes; then he would interpose, and his
judgment could not fail to be acceptable.
_Tenot Dendin_, son of the above, but, unlike the father, he always
tried to crush quarrels in the bud; consequently, he never succeeded
in settling a single dispute submitted to his judgment.--Rabelais,
_Pantagruel_, in. 41 (1545).
(Racine has introduced the same name into his comedy called _Les
Plaideurs_ (1669), and Lafontaine in his _Fables_ 1668).
DENNET (_Father_), an old peasant at the Lists of St. George.--Sir W.
Scott, _Ivanhoe_ (time, Richard I.).
DENNIS the hangman, one of the ringleaders of the "No Popery Riots;"
the other two were Hugh, servant of the Maypole inn, and the
half-witted Barnaby Rudge. Dennis was cheerful enough when he "turned
off" others, but when he himself ascended the gibbet he showed a most
grovelling and craven spirit.--C. Dickens, _Barnaby Rudge_ (1841).
_Dennis (John)_, "the best abused man in English literature." Swift
lampooned him; Pope assailed him in the _Essay on Criticism_; and
finally he was "damned to everlasting fame" in the _Dunciad_. He is
called "Zo'ilus" (1657-1733).
DENNISON _(Jenny)_, attendant on Miss Edith Bellenden. She marries
Cuddie Headrigg.--Sir W. Scott, _Old Mortality_ (time, Charles II.).
DERMER _(Mr.)_, a little bachelor lawyer, whose face has "a pinched,
wistful look" under the curls of his brown wig. He lives in a dreary
house, with a testy housekeeper, and a timid little nephew-ward, and
spends many of his lonely hours in trying to decide if he loves Miss
Deborah Woodhouse the utilitarian, or aesthetic Miss Ruth. On his
death-bed, he gives an old daguerreotype of himself to Miss Ruth.
"Not that I have--have changed my mind,
but it is not improper, I am sure that Miss Deborah's
sister should give me--if she will be
so good--her hand, that I may say 'goodbye'"--Margaret
Deland, _John Ward, Preacher_
D'EON DE BEAUMONT (_Le Chevalier_), a person notorious for the
ambiguity of his sex; said to be the son of an advocate. His face was
pretty, without beard, moustache, or whiskers. Louis XV. sent him as a
woman to Russia on a secret mission, and he presented himself to the
czarina as a woman (1756). In the Seven Years' War he was appointed
captain of dragoons. In 1777 he assumed the dress of a woman again,
which he maintained till death (1728-1810).
DERBY (_Earl of_), third son of the Earl of Lancaster, and near
kinsman of Edward III. His name was Henry Plantagenet, and he died
1362. Henry Plantagenet, earl of Derby, was sent to protect Guienne,
and was noted for his humanity no less than for his bravery. He
defeated the Comte de l'Isle at Bergerac, reduced Perigord, took the
castle of Auberoche, in Gascony, overthrew 10,000 French with only
1000, taking prisoners nine earls and nearly all the barons, knights,
and squires (1345). Next year he took the fortresses of Monsegur,
Montpezat, Villefranche, Miraumont, Tonneins, Damazin, Aiguillon, and
That most deserving Earl of Derby, we prefer Henry's third valiant
son, the Earl of Lancaster. That only Mars of men,
Dayton, _Polyolbion_, xviii. (1613).
_Derby (Countess of)_, Charlotte de la Tremouille, Countess of Derby
and Queen of Man.
_Philip (earl of Derby)_, King of Man, son of the countess.--Sir W.
Scott, _Peveril of the Peak_ (time, Charles II.).
DANIEL DERONDA, pure young fellow whose influence for good over men
and women is marvellous, and explicable only upon the principle that
virtue is mightier than vice. "You could not have seen his face
thoroughly meeting yours without believing that human creatures
had done nobly in times past and might do more nobly in time to
come."--George Eliot, _Daniel Deronda_.
DER'RICK, hangman in the first half of the seventeenth century. The
crane for hoisting goods is called a derrick, from this hangman.
_Derrick (Faith)._ The rural heroine of Susan Warner's novel _Say and
_Derrick (Tom)_, quarter-master of the pirate's vessel.--Sir W. Scott,
_The Pirate_ (time, William III.).
DERRY DOWN TRIANGLE _(The)_, Lord Castlereagh; afterwards marquis of
Londonderry; so called by William Hone. The first word is a pun on the
title, the second refers to his lordship's oratory, a triangle being
the most feeble, monotonous, and unmusical of all musical instruments.
Tom Moore compares the oratory of Lord Castlereagh to "water spouting
from a pump."
_Q_. Why is a pump like viscount Castlereigh?
_A_. Because it is a slender thing of wood,
That up and down its awkward arm doth sway,
And coolly spout, and spout, and spout away,
In one weak, washy, everlasting flood.
DERVISH ("_a poor man_"), a sort of religious friar or mendicant among
DESBOROUG-H _(Colonel)_, one of the parliamentary commissioners.--Sir
W. Scott, _Woodstock_ (time, Commonwealth).
DESDEMO'NA, daughter of Brabantio, a Venetian senator, in love with
Othello the Moor (general of the Venetian army). The Moor loves her
intensely, and marries her; but Iago, by artful villainy, induces him
to believe that she loves Cassio too well. After a violent conflict
between love and jealousy, Othello smothers her with a bolster, and
then stabs himself.--Shakespeare, _Othello_ (1611.)
The soft simplicity of Desdemona, confident of merit and conscious of
innocence, her artless perseverance in her suit, and her slowness to
suspect that she can be suspected, are proofs of Shakespeare's skill
in human nature.--Dr. Johnson.
DESERT FAIRY _(The)_. This fairy was guarded by two lions, that
could be pacified only by a cake made of millet, sugar-candy, and
crocodiles' eggs. The Desert Fairy said to Allfair, "I swear by
my coif you shall marry the Yellow Dwarf, or I will burn my
crutch."--Comtesse D'Aunoy, _Fairy Tales_ ("The Yellow Dwarf," 1682).
DESERTED DAUGHTER _(The)_, a comedy by Holcroft. Joanna was the
daughter of Mordent, but her mother died, and Mordent married Lady
Anne. In order to do so he ignored his daughter and had her brought
up by strangers, intending to apprentice her to some trade. Item, a
money-lender, acting on the advice of Mordent, lodges the girl with
Mrs. Enfield, a crimp, where Lennox is introduced to her, and obtains
Mordent's consent to run away with her. In the interim Cheveril sees
her, falls in love with her, and determines to marry her. Mordent
repents, takes the girl home, acknowledges her to be his daughter, and
she becomes the wife of the gallant young Cheveril (1784).
[Illustration] This comedy has been recast, and called _The Steward_.
DESERTER _(The)_, a musical drama by Dibdin (1770). Henry, a soldier,
is engaged to Louisa, but during his absence some rumors of gallantry
to his disadvantage reach the village, and to test his love, Louisa
in pretence goes with Simkin as if to be married. Henry sees the
procession, is told it is Louisa's wedding day, and in a fit of
desperation gives himself up as a deserter, and is condemned to death.
Lousia goes to the king, explains the whole affair, and returns with
his pardon as the muffled drums begin to beat.
DESMAS. The repentant thief is so called in _The Story of Joseph
of Arimathea_; but Dismas in the apocryphal _Gospel of Nicodemus._
Longfellow, in _The Golden Legend_, calls him Dumachus. The impenitent
thief is called Gestas, but Longfellow calls him Titus.
Imparibus meritis pendent tria corpora ramis:
_Dismas et Gesmas_, media est Divina Potestas;
Alta petit Dismas, infelix infima Gesmas;
Nos et res nostras conservet Summa Potestas.
Of differing merits from three trees incline
Dismas and Gesmas and the Power Divine;
Dismas repents, Gesmas no pardon craves,
The power Divine by death the sinner saves.
DESMONDS OF KILMALLOCK (Limerick). The legend is that the last
powerful head of this family, who perished in the reign of Queen
Elizabeth, still keeps his state under the waters of Lough Gur, that
every seventh year he re-appears fully armed, rides round the lake
early in the morning, and will ultimately return in the flesh to claim
his own again. (See BARBAROSSA.)--Sir W. Scott, _Fortunes of Nigel_.
DESPAIR (_Giant_), lived in Doubting Castle. He took Christian and
Hopeful captive for sleeping on his grounds, and locked them in a dark
dungeon from Wednesday to Saturday, without "one bit of bread, or drop
of drink, or ray of light." By the advice of his wife, Diffidence, the
giant beat them soundly "with a crab-tree cudgel." On Saturday night
Christian remembered he had a key in his bosom, called "Promise,"
which would open any lock in Doubting Castle. So he opened the dungeon
door, and they both made their escape with speed.--John Bunyan,
_Pilgrim's Progress_, i. (1678).
DEUCE IS IN HIM (_The_) a farce by George Colman, senior. The person
referred to is Colonel Tember, under which name the plot of the farce
is given (1762).
DEUGA'LA, says Ossian, "was covered with the light of beauty, but her
heart was the house of pride."
DEVE'TA, plu. Devetas, inferior or secondary deities in Hindu
DEVIL (_The_). Olivier le Daim, the tool of Louis XL, and once the
king's barber, was called _Le Diable_, because he was as much feared,
was as fond of making mischief, and was far more disliked than the
prince of evil. Olivier was executed in 1484.
_Devil (The French)_, Jean Bart, an intrepid French sailor, born at
_Devil (The White)_. George Castriot, surnamed "Scanderbeg," was
called by the Turks "The White Devil of Wallachia" (1404-1467).
_Devil (The Printer's)_. Aldus Manutius, a printer in Venice to the
holy Church and the doge, employed a negro boy to help him in his
office. This little black boy was believed to be an imp of Satan, and
went by the name of the "printer's devil." In order to protect him
from persecution, and confute a foolish superstition, Manutius made a
public exhibition of the boy, and announced that "any one who doubted
him to be flesh and blood might come forward and pinch him."
_Devil (Robert the)_, of Normandy; so called because his father was
said to have been an incubus or fiend in the disguise of a knight
[Illustration] Robert Francois Damiens is also called _Robert le
Diable_, for his attempt to assassinate Louis XV. (1714-1757).
_Devil (Son of the)_, Ezzeli'no, chief of the Gibelins, governor of
Vicenza. He was so called for his infamous cruelties (1215-1259).
DEVIL DICK, Richard Porson, the critic, (1759-1808).
DEVIL ON TWO STICKS, (_The_), that is _Le Diable Boiteux_, by Lesage
(1707). The plot of this humorous satirical tale is borrowed from the
Spanish, _El Diabolo Cojuelo_, by Gueva'ra (1635). Asmode'us (_le
diable boiteux_) perches Don Cle'ofas on the steeple of St. Salvador,
and stretching out his hand, the roofs of all the houses open, and
expose to him what is being done privately in every dwelling.
_Devil on Two Sticks (The)_, a farce by S. Foote; a satire on the
DEVIL TO PAY, (_The_), a farce by C. Coffey. Sir John Loverule has
a termagant wife, and Zackel Jobson, a patient grissel. Two spirits
named Nadir and Ab'ishog transform these two wives for a time, so that
the termagant is given to Jobson, and the patient wife to Sir John.
When my lady tries her tricks on Jobson, he takes his strap to her and
soon reduces her to obedience. After she is well reformed, the two
are restored to their original husbands, and the shrew becomes an
obedient, modest wife (died, 1745).
DEVIL'S AGE (_The_). A wealthy man once promised to give a poor
gentleman and his wife a large sum of money if at a given time they
could tell him the devil's age. When the time came, the gentleman at
his wife's suggestion, plunged first into a barrel of honey and then
into a barrel of feathers, and walked on all fours. Presently up came
his Satanic majesty, and said, "_X and x_ years have I lived," naming
the exact number, "yet never saw I an animal like this." The gentlemen
had heard enough, and was able to answer the question without
difficulty.--Rev. W. Webster, _Basque Legends_, 58 (1877).
DEVIL'S CHALICE (_The_). A wealthy man gave a poor farmer a large sum
of money on this condition: at the end of a twelvemonth he was either
to say "of what the devil made his chalice," or else give his head to
the devil. The poor farmer as the time came round, hid himself in the
crossroads, and presently the witches assembled from all sides. Said
one witch to another, "You know that Farmer So-and-so has sold his
head to the devil, for he will never know of what the devil makes his
chalice. In fact I don't know myself." "Don't you?" said the other;
"why, of the parings of finger-nails trimmed on Sundays."--The farmer
was overjoyed, and when the time came round was quite ready with his
answer.--Rev. W. Webster, _Basque Legends_, 71 (1877).
DEVIL'S DYKE, BRIGHTON (_The_). One day, as St. Cuthman was walking
over the South Downs, and thinking to himself how completely he had
rescued the whole country from paganism, he was accosted by his sable
majesty in person. "Ha, ha!" said the prince of darkness; "so you
think by these churches and convents to put me and mine to your ban,
do you? Poor fool! why, this very night will I swamp the whole land
with the sea." "Forewarned is forearmed," thought St. Cuthman, and
hies him to sister Celia, superior of a convent which then stood on
the spot of the present Dyke House. "Sister," said the saint, "I love
you well. This night, for the grace of God, keep lights burning at the
convent windows from midnight to day-break, and let masses be said
by the holy sisterhood." At sundown came the devil with pickaxe and
spade, mattock: and shovel, and set to work in right good earnest to
dig a dyke which should let the waters of the seas into the downs.
"Fire and brim-stone!"--he exclaimed, as a sound of voices rose and
fell in sacred song--"Fire and brim-stone! What's the matter with
me?" Shoulders, feet, wrists, loins, all seemed paralyzed. Down went
mattock and spade, pickaxe and shovel, and just at that moment the
lights at the convent windows burst forth, and the cock, mistaking the
blaze for daybreak, began to crow most lustily. Off flew the devil,
and never again returned to complete his work. The small digging he
effected still remains in witness of the truth of this legend of the
DEVIL'S PARLIAMENT (_The_), the parliament assembled by Henry VI. at
Conventry, 1459. So called because it passed attainders on the duke of
York and his chief supporters.
DEVIL SACRAMENT. This blasphemous rite whereby those who would
practice witchcraft were initiated into the diabolical mysteries is
described by Deodat Lawson in 1704.
"At their cursed supper they were said to have red bread and red
drink, and when they pressed an afflicted person to eat and drink
thereof she turned away her head and spit at it, and said, 'I will
not eat, I will not drink. It is blood.' ... Thus horribly doth Satan
endeavor to have his kingdom and administrations to resemble those of
our Lord Jesus Christ."--Deodat Lawson, _Christ's Fidelity the only
Shield against Satan's Malignity_ (1704).
DEVONSHIRE, according to historic fable, is a corruption of
"Debon's-share." This Debon was one of the companions of Brute, the
descendent of Aene'as. He chased the giant Coulin till he came to a
pit eight leagues across. Trying to leap this chasm, the giant fell
backwards and lost his life.
... that ample pit, yet far renowned
For the great leap which Debon did compel
Coulin to make, being eight lugs of ground,
Into the which retourning back he fell ...
And Debon's share was that is Devonshire.
Spenser, _Faery Queen_, ii. 10 (1590).
DE'VORGOIL (_Lady Jane_), a friend of the Hazlewood family.--Sir W.
Scott, _Guy Mannering_ (time, George II.).
DEWLAP (_Dick_), an anecdote teller, whose success depended more upon
his physiognomy than his wit. His chin and his paunch were his most
I found that the merit of his wit was founded upon the shaking of
a fat paunch, and the tossing up of a pair of rosy jowls.--Richard
DEXTER, (_Gregory_), the typical Successful Man who is first suitor,
then the generous friend of Anne Douglas, in Constance Fennimore
"A little indifference to outside opinion would
have made him a contented, as he was a successful
man. But there was a surface of personal
vanity over his better qualities which led him to
desire a tribute of universal liking." (1882).
DHU (_Evan_) of Lochiel, a Highland chief in the army of Montrose.
_Mhich-Connel Dhu_. or M'Ilduy, a Highland chief in the army of
Sir W. Scott, _Legend of Montrose_ (time, Charles I.).
DHUL'DUL, the famous horse of Ali, son-in-law of Mahomet.
DHU'L KARNEIN ("_the two-horned_,") a true believer according to the
Mohammedan notion, who built the wall to prevent the incursions of Gog
and Magog.--_Al Koran_, xviii.
Commentators say the wall was built in this
manner: The workman dug till they found
water; and having laid the foundation of stone
and melted brass, they built the superstructure
of large pieces of iron, between which they
packed wood and coal, till the whole equalled
the height of the mountains [_of Armenia_]. Then
setting fire to the combustibles, and by the use of
bellows, they made the iron red hot, and poured
molten brass over to fill up the interstices.
DHU'LNUN, the surname of Jonah.; so called because he was _swallowed
by a fish_.
Remember Dhu'lnun, when he departed in wrath, and thought that we
could not exercise our power over him.--_Al Koran_, xxi.
DIAFOIRUS (_Thomas_), son of Dr. Diafoirus. He is a young medical
milksop, to whom Argan has promised his daughter Angelique in
marriage. Diafoirus pays his compliments in cut-and-dried speeches,
and on one occasion, being interrupted in his remarks, says, "Madame,
vous m'avez interrompu dans le milieu de ma periode, et cela m'a
trouble la memoire." His father says, "Thomas, reservez cela pour une
autre fois." Angelique loves Cleante (2 _syl_.), and Thomas Diafoirus
goes to the wall.
Il n'a jamais eu l'imagination bien vive, ni ce feu d'esprit qu'on
remarque dans quelques uns,.... Lorsqui'il etait petit, il n'a jamais
ete ce qu'on appelle mievre et eveille; on le voyait toujours doux,
paisible, et taciturne, ne disant jamais mot, et ne jouant jamais a
tons ces petits jeux que l'on nomme enfantins.--Moliere, _Le Malade
Imaginaire_, ii.6 (1673).
DI'AMOND, one of three brothers, sons of the fairy Agape. Though very
strong, he was slain in single fight by Cambalo. His brothers were
Pri'amond and Tri'amond.--Spenser, _Faery Queen_, iv. (1596).
DIAMOND JOUSTS, nine jousts instituted by Arthur, and so called
because a diamond was the prize. These nine diamonds were all won by
Sir Launcelot, who presented them to the queen, but Guinevere, in a
tiff, flung them into the river which ran by the palace.--Tennyson,
_Idylls of the King_ ("Elaine").
DIAMOND SWORD, a magic sword given by the god Syren to the king of the
She gave him a sword made of one entire diamond, that gave as great
lustre as the sun.--Comtesse D'Aunoy, _Fairy Tales_ ("The Yellow
DIANA, the heroine and title, a pastoral of Montemayor, imitated from
the _Daphnis_ and _Chloe_ of Longos (fourteenth century).
_Dian'a_, daughter of the widow of Florence with whom Hel'ena lodged
on her way to the shrine of St. Jacques le Grand. Count Bertram
wantonly loved Diana, but the modest girl made this attachment the
means of bringing about a reconciliation between Bertram and his wife
Helena.--Shakespeare, _All's Well that Ends Well_ (1598).
DIAN'A DE LASCOURS, daughter of Ralph and Louise de Lascours, and
sister of Martha, _alias_ Ogari'la. Diana was betrothed to Horace de
Brienne, whom she resigns to Martha.--E. Stirling, _The Orphan of the
Frozen Sea_ (1856).
DIAN'A THE INEXORABLE. (1) She slew Orion with one of her arrows, for
daring to make love to her. (2) She changed Actaeon into a stag and set
her own dogs on him to worry him to death, because he chanced to look
upon her while bathing. (3) She shot with her arrows the six sons and
six daughters of Niobe, because the fond mother said she was happier
than Latona, who had only two children.
Dianae non movenda numina.
Horace, _Epode_, xvii.
DIANA THE SECOND OF SALMANTIN, a pastoral romance by Gil Polo.
"We will preserve that book," said the cure, "as carefully as if
Apollo himself had been its author."--Cervantes, _Don Quixote_, I. i.
DIANA _(the Temple of_), at Ephesus, one of the Seven Wonders of
antiquity, was set on fire by Herostratos to immortalize his name.
DIANA OF THE STAGE, Mrs. Anne Brace-girdle (1663-1748).
DIAN'A'S FORESTERS, "minions of the moon," "Diana's knights," etc.,
Marry, then, sweet wag, when thou art king,
let not us that are "squires of the night's body"
be called _thieves_ ... let us be "Diana's foresters,"
"Gentlemen of the shade," "minions of the
moon."--Shakespeare, I _Henry IV_. act i. sc. 2
DIANO'RA, wife of Gilberto of Friu'li, but amorously loved by Ansaldo.
In order to rid herself of his importunities, she vowed never to yield
to his suit till he could "make her garden at midwinter as gay with
flowers as it was in summer" (meaning _never_). Ansaldo, by the aid of
a magician, accomplished the appointed task; but when the lady told
him that her husband insisted on her keeping her promise, Ansaldo, not
to be outdone in generosity, declined to take advantage of his
claim, and from that day forth was the firm and honorable friend of
Gilberto.--Bocaccio, _Decameron_, x.5.
The _Franklin's Tale_ of Chaucer is substantially the same story. (See
DIARMAID, noted for his "beauty spot," which he covered up with his
cap; for if any woman chanced to see it, she would instantly fall in
love with him.--Campbell, _Tales of the West Highlands_ ("Diarmaid and
DIAV'OLO (_Fra_), Michele Pezza, Insurgent of Calabria
(1760-1806).--Auber, _Fra Diavolo_ (libretto by Scribe, 1836).
DIBBLE (_Davie_), gardener at Monkbarns.--Sir W. Scott, _Antiquary_
(time, George III.).
_Dibu'tades_ (4 _syl_.), a potter of Sicyon, whose daughter traced on
the wall her lover's shadow, cast there by the light of a lamp. This,
it is said, is the origin of portrait painting. The father applied the
same process to his pottery, and this, it is said, is the origin of
sculpture in relief.
Will the arts ever have a lovelier origin than that fair daughter of
Dibutades tracing the beloved shadow on the wall!--Ouida, _Ariadne_,
DICAE'A, daughter of Jove, the "accusing angel" of classic mythology.
Forth stepped the just Dicaea, full of rage.
Phineas Fletcher, _The Purple Island_, vi. (1633).
DICCON THE BEDLAMITE, a half-mad mendicant, both knave and thief. A
specimen of the metre will be seen by part of Diccon's speech:
Many amyle have I walked, divers and sundry waies,
And many a good man's house have I bin at in my dais;
Many a gossip's cup in my tyme have I tasted,
And many a broche and spyt have I both turned and basted ...
When I saw it booted nit, out at doores I hyed mee,
And caught a slyp of bacon when I saw none spyd mee
Which I intend not far hence, unless my purpose fayle,
Shall serve for a shooing home to draw on two pots of ale.
_Gammer Gurton's Needle_ (1575).
DICIL'LA, one of Logistilla's handmaids, noted for her
chastity.--Ariosto, _Orlanda Furioso_ (1516).
DICK, ostler at the Seven Stars inn, York.--Sir W. Scott, _Heart of
Midlothian_ (time, Greorge II.).
_Dick_, called "The Devil's Dick of Hellgarth;" a falconer and
follower of the earl of Douglas.--Sir W. Scott, _Fair Maid of Perth_
(time, Henry IV.).
_Dick (Mr.)_, an amiable, half-witted man, devoted to David's "aunt,"
Miss Betsey Trotwood, who thinks him a prodigious genius. Mr. Dick
is especially mad on the subject of Charles I.--C. Dickens, _David
DICK AMLET, the son of Mrs. Amlet, a rich, vulgar tradeswoman. Dick
assumes the airs of a fine gentleman, and calls himself Colonel
Shapely, in which character he gets introduced to Corinna, the
daughter of Gripe, a rich scrivener. Just as he is about to elope, his
mother makes her appearance, and the deceit is laid bare; but Mrs.
Amlet promises to give her son L10,000, and so the wedding is
adjusted. Dick is a regular scamp, and wholly without principle; but
being a dashing young blade, with a handsome person, he is admired by
the ladies.--Sir John Vanbrugh, _The Confederacy_ (1695).
DICK SHAKEBAG, a highwayman in the gang of Captain Colepepper (the
Alsatian bully).--Sir W. Scott, _Fortunes of Nigel_ (time, James I).
DICKSON (_Thomas_) farmer at Douglasdale.
_Charles Dickson_, son of the above, killed in the church.--Sir W.
Scott, _Castle Dangerous_ (time, Henry I.).
DICTA'TOR OF LETTERS, Francois Marie Arouet de Voltaire, called the
"Great Pan" (1694-1778).
DICTIONARY (_A Living_). Wilhelm Leibnitz (1646-1716) was so called by
[Illustration] Longinus was called "The Living Cyclopaedia" (213-273).
[Illustration] Daniel Huet, chief editor of the _Delphine Classics_,
was called a _Porcus Literarum_ for his unlimited knowledge
DIDDLER (_Jeremy_), an artful swindler; a clever, seedy vagabond, who
borrows money or obtains credit by his songs, witticisms, or other
expedients.--Kenny, _Raising the Wind_.
DIDERICK, the German form of Theodorick, king of the Goths. As Arthur
is the centre of British romance, and Charlemagne of French romance,
so Diderick is the central figure of the German minnesingers. DIDIER
(_Henri_), the lover of Julie Les-urques (2 _syl_.); a gentleman in
feeling and conduct, who remains loyal to his _fiancee_ through all
her troubles.--Ed. Stirling, _The Courier of Lyons_ (1852).
DIDO, _daughter of Belus, king of Tyre_. She bought "as much land in
Africa as a bull's hide could cover," shred the hide into strings, and
enclosed a large tract. AEneas was wrecked upon her coast, and a love
affair ensued. He deserted her, and she killed herself after watching
his ship until it was out of sight.
DIE'GO, the sexton to Lopez the "Spanish curate."--Beaumont and
Fletcher, _The Spanish Curate_ (1622).
_Die'go (Don)_, a man of 60, who saw a country maiden named Leonora,
whom he liked, and intended to marry if her temper was as amiable as
her face was pretty. He obtained leave of her parents to bring her
home and place her under a duenna for three months, and then either
return her to them spotless, or to make her his wife. At the
expiration of the time, he went to settle the marriage contract; and,
to make all things sure, locked up the house, giving the keys to
Ursula, but to the outer door he attached a huge padlock, and put the
key in his pocket. Leander, being in love with Leonora, laughed at
locksmiths and duennas, and Diego (2 _syl_.), found them about to
elope. Being a wise man, he not only consented to their union, but
gave Leonora a handsome marriage portion.--I. Bickerstaff, _The
DIES IRAE. The name generally given from the opening words to a
mediaeval hymn on the Last Judgment. The author is unknown, but the
hymn is now generally ascribed to a monk of the Abruzzi, in Naples,
Thomas de Celano, who died about 1255.
Dies irae, dies ilia
Sol vet sseclum in favilla
Teste David cum Sibylla.
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