Jack-a-Dandy to Jacobins
Jack-a-Dandy A term of endearment for a smart, bright little fellow; a Jemmy Jessamy.
"Smart she is, and handy, O!Jack-a-dandy. Slang for brandy. Dandy rhymes with brandy. (See Chivy.)
In Ireland "dandy" means whisky: but whisky = eau de vie; and eau de vie is brandy.
"Dimidium cyathi vero apud Methropolitanos Herbernicos dicitur Dandy." - Blackwood's Magazine, May, 1838 (Father Tom and the Pope).Jack-a-Lantern (A). A Will-o'-the-wisp, an ignis fatuus.
"I will teach a scurvy jackanape priest to meddle or make." - Shakespeare: Merry Wives of Windsor, i. 4.Jack-Amend-All One of the nicknames given to Jack Cade the rebel, who promised to remedy all abuses.
Jack Horner For solution see Notes and Queries, xvi. 156; xvii. 83. In Latin alcaics, thus:
"Sedens Johannes parvus in anguloJack Ketch Although this looks very much like a sobriquet, there seems no sufficient evidence to believe it to be otherwise than a real proper name. We are told that the name Jack was applied to hangmen from Richard Jaquett, to whom the manor of Tyburn once belonged. (See Hangmen.)
Jack Pudding A buffoon who performs pudding tricks, such as swallowing a certain number of yards of black-pudding. S. Bishop observes that each country names its stage buffoon from its favourite viands: The Dutchman calls him Pickel-herringë; the Germans, Hans Wurst (John Sausage); the Frenchman, Jean Potage; the Italian, Macaroni; and the English, Jack Pudding.
Jack Robinson Before you can say Jack Robinson. Immediately. Grose says that the saying had its
birth from a very volatile gentleman of that name, who used to pay flying visits to his neighbours, and
was no sooner announced than he was off again; but the following couplet does not confirm this derivation: -
"A warke it ys as easie to be doneJack Sprat A dwarf; as if sprats were dwarf mackerels. Children, by a similar metaphor, are called small fry.
Jack Tar A common sailor, whose hands and clothes are tarred by the ship tackling.
Jack and the Bean Stalk A nursery tale of German invention. The giant is All-Father, whose three treasures are (1) a harp - i.e. the wind; (2) bags full of treasures - i.e. the rain; and (3) the red hen which laid golden eggs - that is, the genial sun. Man avails himself of these treasures and becomes rich.
Jack of all Trades is Master of None In French, "Tout savoir est ne rien savoir. "
Jack o' both Sides A supernumerary who plays on both sides to make up a party; one who for profit or policy is quite colourless.
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