Double to Dovetail

Double (To). To pass or sail round, as "to double the cape." The cape (or point) is twice between the ship and the land. (French, doubler; Latin, duoplico.)

"What capes he doubled, and what continent,
The gulfs and straits that strangely he had past."
Dryden: Ideas, stanza 1.
Double Dealing Professing one thing and doing another inconsistent with that promise.

"[She] was quite above all double-dealing. She had no mental reservation." - Maria Edgeworth.
Double Dutch Gibberish, jargon, or a foreign tongue not understood by the hearer. Dutch is a synonym for foreign; and double is simply excessive, in a twofold degree.

Double-edged Sword Literally, a sword which cuts either way; metaphorically, an argument which makes both for and against the person employing it, or which has a double meaning.

" `Your Delphic sword,' the panther then replied,
`Is double-edged, and cuts on either side.' "
Dryden: Hind and Panther, part iii. 191-2.
Double Entendre (English-French for Un mot a double entente, or à deux ententes). Words which secretly express a rude or coarse covert meaning, generally of a licentious character. "Entendre" is the infinitive mood of a verb, and is never used as a noun.

Double First (A). In the first class both of the classical and mathematical final examination in the Oxford University; or of the classical and mathematical triposes of the University of Cambridge.

Double-headed Eagle (The). The German eagle has its head turned to our left hand, and the Roman eagle to our right hand. When Charlemagne was made "Kaiser of the Holy Roman Empire," he joined the two heads together, one looking east and the other west.

Double-tongued One who makes contrary declarations on the same subject at different times; deceitful.

"Be grave, not double-tongued." - 1 Tim. iii.8.
Double up (To). To fold together. "To double up the fist" is to fold the fingers together so as to make the hand into a fist.
   I doubled him up. I struck him in the wind, so as to make him double up with pain, or so as to leave him "all of a heap."

Double X (See XX.)

Double or Quits The winner stakes his stake, and the loser promises to pay twice the stake if he loses again; but if he wins the second throw he pays nothing, and neither player loses or wins anything. This is often done when the stake is 3d., and the parties have no copper: if the loser loses again, he pays 6d.; if not, the winner does not claim his 3d.

Doubles or Double-walkers. Those aerial duplicates of men or women who represent them so minutely as to deceive those who know them. We apply the word to such persons as the Dromio brothers, the Corsican brothers, and the brothers Antipholus. The "head centre Stephens" is said to have had a double, who was perpetually leading astray those set to hunt him down.

Doubting Castle The castle of the giant Despair, in which Christian and Hopeful were incarcerated, but from which they escaped by means of the key called "Promise." (Bunyan: Pilgrim's Progress.)

Douceur' (French.) A gratuity for service rendered or promised.

Douglas The tutelary saint of the house of Douglas is St. Bridget. According to tradition, a Scottish king in 770, whose ranks had been broken by the fierce onset of the Lord of the Isles saw, the tide of battle turned in his favour by an unknown chief. After the battle the king asked who was the "Du-glass" chieftain, his deliverer, and received for answer Sholto Du-glass (Behold the dark-grey man you inquired for). The king then rewarded him with the Clydesdale valley for his services.

" `Let him not cross or thwart me.' said the page; `for I will not yield him an inch of way, had he in his body the soul of every Douglas that has lived since the time of the Dark Gray Man.' " - Scott: The Abbot, chap.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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