Die to Dinah

The die is cast. The step is taken, and I cannot draw back. So said Julius Caesar when he crossed the Rubicon.

"I have set my life upon the cast,
And I will stand the hazard of the die."
Shakespeare: Richard III., v. 4.
   Whom the gods love die young. This is from Menander's fragments (Hon hoi theoi philousin apothneskei neos). Demosthenes has a similar apophthegm. Plautus has the line, "Quem Di diligunt adolescens moritur. " (See Byron: Don Juan, canto iv. 12.) Those who die young are "taken out of the miseries of this sinful life" into a happy immortality.

Die-hards The 57th Foot. Their colonel (Inglis) in the battle of Albuera (1811), addressing his men, said, "Die hard, my lads; die hard!" And they did die hard, for their banner was pierced with thirty bullets. Only one officer out of twenty-four survived, and only 168 men out of 584. This fine regiment is now called the West Middlesex; the East Middlesex (the Duke of Cambridge's own) is the old 77th.

Diego (San). A corruption of Santiago (St. James), champion of the red cross, and patron saint of Spain.

Dies Alliensis (See Alliensis .)

Dies Iræ A famous madiæval hymn on the last judgment, probably the composition of Thomas of Celano, a native of Abruzzi, who died in 1255. Sir Walter Scott has introduced the former part of it into his Lay of the Last Minstrel.

"Dies iræ, dies illa,
Solvet sæclum in favilla,
Teste David cum Sibylla."
   On that day, that wrathful day,
   David and the Sibyl say,
   Heaven and earth shall melt away.
   E. C. B.

Dies Non A non-business day. A law phrase, meaning a day when the courts do not sit, as on Sundays; the Purification, in Hilary term; the Ascension, in Easter term; St. John the Baptist, in Trinity term; and All Saints, with All Souls, in Michaelmas term. A contracted form of "Dies non juridicus," a non-judicial day.

Dies Sanguinis The 24th March, called Bellona's Day, when the Roman votaries of the war-goddess cut themselves and drank the sacrificial blood to propitiate the deity.

Dietrich (2 syl.), of Berne or Verona, a name given by the German minnesängers (minstrels) to Theodoric the Great, king of the Ostrogoths. One of the liegemen of King Etzel. In the terrible broil stirred up by Queen Kriemhild in the banquet-hall of the Hunnish king, after the slaughter of Sir Rudiger, his friend Dietrich interfered, and succeeded in taking prisoners the only two surviving Burgundians, kings Gunther and Hagan, whom he handed over to Kriemhild, praying that she would set them free, but the angry queen cut off both their heads with her own hands. (The Nibelungen-Lied.)

Dieu Dieu et mon droit (God and my right). The parole of Richard I. at the battle of Gisors (1198), meaning that he was no vassal of France, but owed his royalty to God alone. As the French were signally beaten, the battle-word was adopted as the royal motto of England.

Difference Ophelia says to the queen. "You may wear your rue with a difference." In heraldry differences or marks of cadency indicate the various branches of a family.
   (1) The eldest son, during the lifetime of his father, bears a label (or lambel), i.e. a piece of silk, stuff, or linen, with three pendants, broader at the bottom than at the top.
   (2) The second son bears a crescent.
   (3) The third, a mullet (or star with five points).
   (4) The fourth, a martlet.
   (5) The fifth, an annulet.
   (6) The sixth, a fleur-de-lis.
   (7) The seventh, a rose.
   (8) The eighth, a cross-moline.
   (9) The ninth, a double quatre foil.
   Ophelia says both she and the Queen are to wear rue, the one as the affianced of Hamlet, eldest son of the late king; the other as the wife of Claudius his brother, and the cadet branch. The latter was to have a "difference," to signify it was a cadet branch. "I [says Ophelia] shall wear the rue, but you [the Queen] must now wear it with a `difference.' "

  By PanEris using Melati.

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