Dalkey to Danaw

Dalkey (King of). A kind of "Mayor of Garrat" (q.v.) at Kingstown, in Ireland. A full description is given of this mock mayor, etc., in a book entitled Ireland Ninety Years Ago.

Dalle (French), écu de six francs (5s.). Money generally.

"Quiconque parleroit de paix ... payeroit à la bourse de l'Union certaine quantitée de dales, pour l'entretenement des docteurs." - Satyre Menippee, 1824, p.163.
Dalmatica or Dalmatic. A robe, open in front, reaching to the knees; worn at one time by deacons over the alb or stole, when the Eucharist was administered. It is in imitation of the regal vest of Dalmatia, and was imported into Rome by the Emperor Commodus. A similar robe was worn by kings, in the Middle Ages, at coronations and other great solemnities, to remind them of their duty of bountifulness to the poor. The right sleeve was plain and full, but the left was fringed and tasselled. Deacons had broader sleeves than sub-deacons, to indicate their duty to larger generosity; for a similar reason the sleeves of a bishop are larger than those of a priest. The two stripes before and behind were to show that the wearer should exercise his charity to all.

Dam An Indian copper coin, the fortieth part of a rupee. Hence the expression "Not worth a dam"; similarly "not worth a farthing," "not worth a rap" (q.v.); "not worth a sou," "not worth a stiver," etc.

Damage What's the damage? What have I to pay? how much is the bill? The allusion is to the law assessing damages in remuneration to the plaintiff.

Damask Linen So called from Damascus, where it was originally manufactured.

Damaskeening Producing upon steel a blue tinge and ornamental figures, sometimes inlaid with gold and silver, as in Damascus blades; so called from Damascus, which was celebrated in the Middle Ages for this class of ornamental art.

Dambe'a or Dembe'a. A lake in Gojam, Abyssinia, the source of the Blue Nile. Captain Speke traced the White Nile to Lake Victoria N'yanza, which, no doubt, is fed by the Mountains of the Moon.

"He [the Nile] thro' the Incid lake
Of fair Dambea rolls his infant stream."
Thomson: Summer, 807-8.
Dame du Lac A fay, named Vivienne, who plunged with the infant Lancelot into a lake. This lake was a kind of mirage, concealing the demesnes of the lady "en la marche de la petite Bretaigne." (See Vivienne.)

"En ce lieu ... avoit la dame moult de belles maisons et moult riches; et au plain dessoubs elle avoit une gente petite rivière."
Damiens' Bed of Steel R. F. Damiens, in 1757, attempted the life of Louis XV. He was taken to the Conciergerie; an iron bed, which likewise served as a chair, was prepared for him, and to this he was fastened with chains. He was then tortured, and ultimately torn to pieces by wild horses. (Smollet: History of England, v. 12, p. 39.)

"The uplifted axe, the agonising wheel,
Luke's iron crown, and Damiens' bed of steel."
Goldsmith: The Traveller (1768).
Damn with Faint Praise To praise with such a voice and in such measured terms as to show plainly secret disapproval.

"Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer,
And, without sneering, teach the rest to sneer."
Pope: Epistle to Arbuthnot.
Damocles' Sword Evil foreboded or dreaded. Damocles, the sycophant of Dionysius the elder, of Syracuse, was invited by the tyrant to try the felicity he so much envied. Accordingly he was set down to a sumptuous banquet, but overhead was a sword suspended by a hair. Damocles was afraid to stir, and the banquet was a tantalising torment to him. (Cicero.)

"These fears hang like Damocles' sword over every feast,and make enjoyment impossible." - Chambers's Cyclopædia.
Damon and Musidora Two lovers in Thomson's Summer. One day Damon caught Musidora bathing, and his delicacy so won upon her that she promised to be his bride.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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