Blacks to Bleak House

Blacks (The), an Italian faction of the fourteenth century. The Guelphs of Florence were divided into the Blacks who wished to open their gates to Charles de Valois, and the Whites who opposed him. Dantê the poet was a “White,” and as the “Blacks” were the predominant party, he was exiled in 1302, and during his exile wrote his immortal poem, the Divina Commedia.

Blackacre (Widow), a masculine, litigious, pettifogging, headstrong woman.—Wycherly: The Plain Dealer (1677).

Blackchester (The countess of), sister of lord Dalgarno.—Sir W. Scott: Fortunes of Nigel (time, James I.).

Blackfriar’s Bridge (London) was once called “Pitt’s Bridge.” This was the bridge built by R. Mylne in 1780, but the name never found favour with the general public.

Blackguards (Victor Hugo says), soldiers condemned for some offence in discipline to wear their red coats (which were lined with black) inside out. The French equivalent, he says, is Blaquers. L’Homme qui Rit, II. iii. I.

It is quite impossible to believe this to be the true derivation of the word. Other suggestions will be found in the Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, p. 141.

Blackless (Tomalin), a soldier in the guard of Richard Cœur de Lion.—Sir W. Scott: The Talisman (time, Richard I.).

Blacmantle (Bernard), Charles MolloyWestmacott, author of The English Spy (1826).

Blackpool (Stephen), a power-loom weaver in Bounderby’s mill at Coketown. He had a knitted brow and pondering expression of face, was a man of the strictest integrity, refused to join the strike, and was turned out of the mill. When Tom Gradgrind robbed the bank of £150, he threw suspicion on Stephen Blackpool, and while Stephen was hastening to Cokeburn to vindicate himself, he fell into a shaft known as “the Hell Shaft,” and, although rescued, died on a litter. Stephen Blackpool loved Rachel, one of the hands, but had already a drunken, worthless wife.—Dickens: Hard Times (1854).

Blacksmith (The Flemish), Quintin Matsys, the Dutch painter (1460–1529).

Blacksmith (The Learned), Elihu Burritt, United States (1811–1879).

Blacksmith’s Daughter (The), lock and key.

Place it under the care of the blacksmith’s daughter.
Dickens: Tale of Two Cities (1859).

Blackwood’s Magazine. The vignette on the wrapper of this magazine is meant for George Buchanan, the Scotch historian and poet (1506–1582). He is the representative of Scottish literature generally.

The magazine originated in 1817 with William Blackwood of Edinburgh, publisher.

Bladamour, the friend of Paridel the libertine.—Spenser: Faerie Queene.

Bladderskate (Lord) and lord Kaimes, the two judges in Peter Peeble’s lawsuit.—Sir W. Scott: Redgauntlet (time, George III.).

Bladud, father of king Lear. Geoffrey of Monmouth says that Bladud, attempting to fly, fell on the temple of Apollo, and was dashed in pieces. Hence when Lear swears “By Apollo” he is reminded that Apollo was no friend of the kings (act i. sc. I). Bladud, says the story, built Bath (once called Badon), and dedicated to Minerva the medicinal spring which is called “Bladud’s Well.”

  By PanEris using Melati.

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