Mary Magdalene to Matamore

Mary Magdalene (St.). Patron saint of penitents, being herself the model penitent of Gospel history.
   In Christian art she is represented (1) as a patron saint, young and beautiful, with a profusion of hair, and holding a box of ointment; (2) as a penitent, in a sequestered place, reading before a cross or skull.

Mary Queen of Scots Shakespeare being under the patronage of Queen Elizabeth, and knowing her jealousy, would not, of course, praise openly her rival queen; but in the Midsummer Night's Dream, composed in 1592, that is, five years after the execution of Mary, he wrote these exquisite lines:-

“Thou rememberest
Since once I sat upon a promontory,
And heard a mermaid (1) on a dolphin's back (2)
Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath,
That the rude sea (3) grew civil at her song;
And certain stars (4) shot madly from their spheres (5),
To hear the sea-maid's music.” Act ii. 1.
   (1) Mermaid and sea-maid, that is, Mary: (2) on the dolphin's back, she married the Dolphin or Dauphin of France; (3) the rude sea grew civil, the Scotch rebels; (4) certain stars, the Earl of Northumberland, the Earl of Westmoreland, and the Duke of Norfolk; (5) shot madly from their spheres, that is, revolted from Queen Elizabeth, bewitched by the sea-maid's sweetness.

Marybuds The flower of the marigold (q.v.). Like many other flowers, they open at daybreak and close at sunset.

“And winking marybuds begin
To ope their golden eyes.”
Shakespeare: Cymbeline, ii. 3.
Marygold or Marigold. A million sterling. A plum is £100,000. (See Marigold.)

Maryland (U.S. America) was so named in compliment to Queen Henrietta Maria. In the Latin charter it is called Terra Mariæ.

Marylebone (London) is not a corruption of Marie la bonne, but “Mary on the bourne” or river, as Holborn is “Old Bourne.”

Mas (plural, Masse). Master, Mr., Messrs; as, Mas John King, Masse Fleming and Stebbing.

Masaniello A corruption of TomMASo ANIELLO, a Neapolitan fisherman, who led the revolt of July, 1647. The great grievance was a new tax upon fruit, and the immediate cause of Masaniello's interference was the seizure of his wife (or deaf and dumb sister) for having in her possession some contraband flour. Having surrounded himself with 150,000 men, women, and boys, he was elected chief of Naples, and for nine days ruled with absolute control. The Spanish viceroy flattered him, and this so turned his head that he acted like a maniac. The people betrayed him, he was shot, and his body flung into a ditch, but next day it was interred with a pomp and ceremony never equalled in Naples (1647).
   Auber has an opera on this subject called La Muette de Portici (1828).

Masche-croute [gnaw-crust]. A hideous wooden statue carried about Lyons during Carnival. The nurses of Lyons frighten children by threatening to throw them to Masche-croute.

Mascotte One who brings good luck, and possesses a “good eye.” The contrary of Jettatore, or one with an evil eye, who always brings bad luck.

“Ces envoyés du paradis,
Sont des Mascottes, mes amis,
Heureux celui que le ciel dote d'une Mascotte.”
The opera called La Mascotte (1883).

“I tell you, she was a Mascotte of the first water.”- The Ludgate Monthly, No. 1, vol. ii.; Tippitywitchet, Nov. 1891.
Masdeu (Catalan for God's field). The vineyard not far from Perpignan was anciently so called.

Masetto A rustic engaged to Zerlina; but Don Giovanni intercepts them in their wedding festivities, and induces the foolish damsel to believe he meant to make her his wife. (Mozart: Don Giovanni, an opera.)

  By PanEris using Melati.

Previous chapter Back Home Email this Search Discuss Bookmark Next chapter/page
Copyright: All texts on Bibliomania are © Ltd, and may not be reproduced in any form without our written permission.
See our FAQ for more details.