Badge of Poverty to Baillif

Badge of Poverty In former times those who received parish relief had to wear a badge. It was the letter P, with the initial of the parish to which they belonged, in red or blue cloth, on the shoulder of the right sleeve. (See Dyvour.)

Badge-men Alms-house men; so called because they wear some special dress, or other badge, to indicate that they belong to a particular foundation.

"He quits the gay and rich, the young and free,
Among the badge-men with a badge to be." Crabbe: Borough.
Badger (A) A licensed huckster, who was obliged to wear a badge. By 5 Eliz., c. 12, it was enacted that "Badgers were to be licensed annually, under a penalty of #5."

"Under Dec. 17, 1565, we read of "Certain persons upon Humber side who ... by great quantities of corn two of whom were authorised badgers."" - State Papers (Domestic Series).
Badger (To) To tease or annoy by superior numbers. In allusion to the ancient custom of badger-baiting. A badger was kennelled in a tub, where dogs were set upon him to worry him out. When dragged from his tub the poor beast was allowed to retire to it till he recovered from the attack. This process was repeated several times.

Badger. It is a vulgar error that the legs of a badger are shorter on one side than on the other.

"I think that Titus Oates was as uneven as a badger." - Lord Macaulay.
Drawing a badger is drawing him out of his tub by means of dogs.

Badinage Playful raillery, banter (French), from the verb badiner, to joke or jest. The noun badine means a switch, and in France they catch wild ducks by covering a boat with switches, in which the ducks seek protection. A person quizzed is like these wild ducks.

Badinguet A nickname given to Napoleon III. It was the name of the workman whose clothes he wore when he contrived to escape from the fort of Ham, in 1846.

"If Badinguet and Bismarck have a row together let them settle it between them with their fists, instead of troubling hundreds of thousands of men who ... have no wish to fight." - Zola: The Downfall , chap. ii. (1892).
Badingueux The party of the Emperor Napoleon III. The party of the Empress were called "Montijoyeux" and "Montijocrisses," from Montijo in Spain. She was the second daughter of the Count of Montijo.

Badminton is properly a "copus cup," made of claret spiced and sweetened, a favourite with the Duke of Beaufort of Badminton. As the duke used to be a great patron of the prize ring, Badminton was used as equivalent to claret as the synonym of blood.

Also a game similar to lawn tennis only played with shuttlecocks instead of balls.

Baffle To erase the cognisance of a recreant knight. To degrade a knight from his rank. To be knocked about by the winds.

"I am disgraced, impeached, and baffled here." Shakespeare: Richard II, act i. 1.

Bag Bag and Baggage, as "Get away with you, bag and baggage," i.e. get away, and carry with you all your belongings. The bag or sack is the pouch in which a soldier packs his few articles when he moves from place to place. Baggage is a contemptuous term for a woman, either because soldiers send their wives in the baggage wagons, or from the Italian bagascia (a harlot), French bagasse, Spanish bagazo, Persian, baga.

Bag and baggage policy. In 1876 Mr. Gladstone, speaking on the Eastern question, said, "Let the Turks now carry away their abuses in the only possible manner, namely, by carrying away themselves. ... One and all, bag and baggage, shall, I hope, clear out from the province they have desolated and profaned." This was termed by the Conservatives the bag and baggage policy.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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