Dantesque to Davenport

Dantesque (2 syl.). Dante-like - that is, a minute life-like representation of the infernal horrors, whether by words, as in the poet, or in visible form, as in Doré's illustrations of the Inferno.

Daphnaida An elegy on Douglas Howard, daughter and heiress of Lord Howard. (Spenser, 1591.)

Daphne Daughter of a river-god, loved by Apollo. She fled from the amorous god, and escaped by being changed into a laurel, thenceforth the favourite tree of the sun-god.

"Nay, lady, sit. If I but wave this wand,
Your nerves are all chain'd up in alabaster,
And you a statue, or, as Daphnë was,
Root-bound, that fled Apollo."
Milton:Comus, 678-681.
Daphnis A Sicilian shepherd who invented pastoral poetry.
   Daphnis. The lover of Chloe in the exquisite Greek pastoral romance of Longos, in the fourth century. Daphnis was the model of Allan Ramsay's Gentle Shepherd, and the tale is the basis of St. Pierre's Paul and Virginia.

Dapper A little, nimble, spruce young clerk in Ben Jonson's Alchemist.

Dapple The name of Sancho Panza's donkey in Cervantes' romance of Don Quixote. Bailey derives dapple from the Teutonic dapper (streaked or spotted like a pippin). A dapple-grey horse is one of a light grey shaded with a deeper hue; a dapple-bay is a light bay spotted with bay of a deeper colour. (Icelandic, depill, a spot.)

Darbies (2 syl.). Handcuffs. This is derived from "Darby and Joan," because originally two prisoners were linked together as Darby and Joan.

"Hark ye! Jem Clink will fetch you the darbies." - Sir W. Scott: Peveril of the Peak.
    Johnny Darbies, policemen, is a perversion' of the French gensdarmes, in conjunction with the above.

Darby and Joan A loving, old-fashioned, virtuous couple. The names belong to a ballad written by Henry Woodfall, and the characters are those of John Darby, of Bartholomew Close, who died 1730, and his wife, "As chaste as a picture cut in alabaster. You might sooner move a Scythian rock than shoot fire into her bosom." Woodfall served his apprenticeship to John Darby.

"Perhaps some day or other we may be Darby
and Joan." - Lord Lytton.
    The French equivalent is C'est St. Roch et son chien.

Darbyites (3 syl.). The Plymouth Brethren are so called on the Continent from Mr. Darby, a barrister, who abandoned himself to the work, and was for years the "organ" of the sect.

Darics (or) Stateres Darici. Celebrated Persian coins. So called from Darius. They bear on one side the head of the king, and on the other a chariot drawn by mules. Their value is about twenty-five shillings.

Dariolet, Dariolette (French). An intriguant, a confidant, a go-between, a pander. Originally a dariole meant a little sweetmeat or cake rayed with little bands of paste.

"Dariolette, employé comme un des nombreux synonymes de soubrette, a eu d'abord la mission particuliére de designer les suivantes de roman."- Roland de Villarceaux.

"Mdlle. Vitry, confidente de Mdlle, de Guise, était la dariolette." - Tallemant, vol. i. p. 125.
Darius A classic way of spelling Darawesh (king), a Persian title of royalty. Gushtasp or Kishtasp assumed the title of darawesh on ascending the throne, and is the person generally called Darius the Great.
   Darius. Seven princes 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.
   Darius, conquered by Alexander, was Dara, surnamed kuchek (the younger). When Alexander succeeded to the throne, Dara sent to him for the tribute of golden eggs, but the Macedonian returned for answer, "The bird which laid them is flown to the other world, where Dara must seek them." The Persian king then sent him a bat and ball, in ridicule of his youth; but Alexander told the messengers, with the bat he would beat the ball of power from their master's

  By PanEris using Melati.

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