Mercia to Merry Dun of Dover

Mercia The eighth and last kingdom of the Heptarchy, between the Thames and the Humber. It was the merc or boundary of the Anglo-Saxons and free Britons of Wales.

Mercurial Light-hearted and gay, like those born under the planet Mercury. (Astrological notion.)

Mercurial Finger (The). The little finger.

“The thumb, in chiromancy, we give to Venus,
The forefinger to Jove, the midst to Saturn,
The ring to Sol, the least to Mercury.”
Ben Jonson: The Alchemist, i. 1.
    If pointed it denotes eloquence, if square it denotes sound judgment.

Mercuriale (4 syl., French). An harangue or rebuke; so called from Mercuriale, as the first Wednesday after the great vacation of the Parliament under the old French régime used to be called. On this day the house discussed grievances, and reprimanded members for misconduct.

Mercury Images of Mercury, or rather, shapeless posts with a marble head of Mercury on them, used to be erected by the Greeks and Romans where two or more roads met, to point out the way. (Juvenal, viii. 53.)
    There are two famous statues of this god in Paris: one in the garden of Versailles, by Lerambert, and another in the Tuileries, by Mellana.
   You cannot make a Mercury of every log. Pythagoras said: “Non ex quovis ligno Mercurius fit.” That is, “Not every mind will answer equally well to be trained into a scholar.” The proper wood for a statute of Mercury was boxwood- “vel quod hominis pultorem præ se ferat, vel quod materies sit omnium maxime æterna.” (Erasmus.)

Mercury in astrology, “signifieth subtill men, ingenious, inconstant: rymers, poets, advocates, orators, phylosophers, arithmeticians, and busie fellowes.”

Mercury Fig (In Latin Ficus and Mercurium). The first fig gathered off a fig-tree was by the Romans devoted to Mercury. The proverbial saying was applied generally to all first fruits or first works, as the “Guide to Science was my Mercury fig.”

Mercutio A kind-hearted, witty nobleman, kinsman to the Prince of Verona, in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. Being mortally wounded by Tybalt, he was asked if he were hurt, and replied, “A scratch, a scratch; marry, 'tis enough.”
   The Mercutio of actors. Lewis, who displayed in acting the combination of the fop and real gentleman. (1748-1811.)

Mercy A young pilgrim who accompanied Christiana in her pilgrimage to Mount Zion. She married Matthew, Christian's son. (Bunyan: Pilgrim's Progress, part ii.)
   Mercy. The seven works of mercy are:-
   (1) To tend the sick.
   (2) To feed the hungry.
   (3) To give drink to the thirsty.
   (4) To clothe the naked.
   (5) To house the homeless.
   (6) To visit the fatherless and the afflicted.
   (7) To bury the dead.
   Matt. xxv. 35-40.

Meredith (Owen). The pseudonym of Edward Robert Bulwer Lytton, author of Chronicles and Characters, in verse (1834). He became Lord Lytton (1873-1891).

Meridian (A). A noonday dram of spirits.

“He received from the hand of the waiter the meridian, which was placed ready at the bar.”- Sir Walter Scott: Redgauntlet, chap. i.
Merino Sheep A Spanish breed of sheep, very valuable for their wool.

Merioneth (Wales) is maeronaeth (a dairy farm).

Merlan (French). A whiting, or a hairdresser. Perruquiers are so called because at one time they were covered with flour like whiting prepared for the frying-pan.

“Madressant à un merlan qui filait une perruque sur un peigne de fer.”- Chateaubriand: Mémoíres à Outre- Tombe.
Merlin Prince of Enchanters; also the name of a romance. He was the son of a damsel seduced

  By PanEris using Melati.

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