Sheep to Shepherd-Kings

Sheep (Lord Bantam’s). These sheep had tails of such enormous length that his lordship had go-carts harnessed to the sheep for carrying their tails.

There goes Mrs. Roundabout, the cutler’s wife… Odious puss! how she waddles along with her train two yards behind her! She puts me in mind of lord Bantam’s sheep.—Goldsmith: The Bee, ii.(1759).

Sheep (The Cotswold).

No brown, nor sullied black, the face or legs doth
[All] of the whitest kind, whose brows so wolly be,
As men in her fair sheep no emptiness should see…
A body long and large, the buttocks equal broad…
And of the fleecy face, the flank doth nothing lack,
But everywhere is stored, the belly as the back.

Drayton: Polyobion, xiv. (1613).

Sheep-Dog (A), a lady-companion, who occupies the back seat of the barouche, carries wraps, etc., goes to church with the lady, and “guards her from the wolves,” as much as the lady wishes to be guarded, but no more.

“Rawdon.” said Becky,… “I must have a sheep dog … I mean a moral shepherd’s dog… to keep the wolves off me”… “A sheep-dog, a companion! Becky Sharp with a sheep-dog! Isn’t that good fun?”—Thackeray: Vanity Fair, xxxvii. (1848).

Sheep of the Addane Valley. In this valley, which led to the cave of the Addanc, were two flocks of sheep, one white and the other black. When any one of the black sheep bleated, a white sheep crossed over and became black, and when one of the white sheep bleated, a black sheep crossed over and became white.—The Mabinogion (“Peredur,” twelfth century).

Sheep of the Prisons, a cant term in the French Revolution for a spy under the jailers—Dickens: A Tale of Two Cities, iii. 7 (1859).

Sheep Tilted at. Don Quixote saw the dust o f two flocks of sheep coming in opposite directions, and told Sancho they were two armies—one commanded by the emperor Alifanfaron sovereign of the island of Trap’oban, and the other by the king of the Garaman’t eans, called “Pentapolin’s with the Naked Arm.” He said that Alifanfaron was in love with Pentapolin’s daughter, but Pentapolin refused to sanction the alliance, because Alifanfaron,” was a Mohammedan. The mad knight rushed on the flock “led by Alifanfaron,” and killed seven of the sheep, but was stunned by stones thrown at him by the shepherds. When Sancho told his master that the two armies were only two flocks of sheep, the knight replied that the enchanter Freston had “metamorphosed the two grand armies” in order to show his malice.—Cervantes: Don Quixote. I. iii. 4 (1605).

After the death of Achillês, Ajax and Ulysses both claimed the armour of Hector. The dispute was settled by the sons of Atreus, who awarded the prize to Ulysses. This so enraged Ajax that it drove him mad, and he fell upon a flock of sheep driven at night into the camp, supposing it to be an army led by Ulysses and the sons of Atreus. When he found out his mistake, he stabbed himself. This is the subject of a tragedy by Soph’oclês called Ajax Mad.

Orlando in his madness also fell foul of a flock of sheep.—Ariosto: Orlando Furioso (1516).

Sheeps Heads, jemmies, for wrenching doors open. Bill Sikes had sheep’s head for supper before entering on the enterprise of breaking into Chertsey House—

Which gave occasion to several pleasant witticisms on the part of Mr. Sikes.—Dickens: Oliver Twist, ch. xx.p. 75 (1838).

Sheet=a rope. (See ERRORS OF AUTHORS: Allan Cunningham, p. 334.)

  By PanEris using Melati.

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