Pharsalia to Philosopher's Stone

Pharsalia An epic in Latin hexameters by Lucan. The battle of Pharsalia was between Pompey and Cæsar. Pompey had 45,000 legionaries, 7,000 cavalry, and a large number of auxiliaries; Cæsar had 22,000 legionaries and 1,000 cavalry. Pompey's battle-cry was “Hercules invictus; ” that of Cæsar was “Venus victrix. ” On this occasion Cæsar won the battle.

Pheasant So called from Phasis, a stream of the Black Sea.

“There was formerly at the fort of Poti a preserve of pheasants, which birds derive their European name from the river Phasis (the present Rion).”- Lieut-General Monteith.
Phebe (2 syl.). A shepherdess. (Shakespeare: As You Like It.)

Phelis called the Fair. The wife of Sir Guy, Earl of Warwick. (See Guy .)

Phenomenon (plural, phenomena) means simply what has appeared (Greek, phainomai, to appear). It is used in science to express the visible result of an experiment. In popular language it means a prodigy. (Greek, phainomenon.)

Phidias The French Phidias. Jean Goujon (1510-1572); also called the Correggio of sculptors. (2) J. B. Pigalle (1714-1785).

Phigalian Marbles A series of twenty-three sculptures in alto-relievo, discovered in 1812 at Phigalia, in Arcadia, and in 1814 purchased for the British Museum. They represent the combat of the Centaurs and Lapithæ, and that of the Greeks and Amazons. They are part of the “Elgin Marbles” (q.v.).

Philadelphia Stones called Christian Bones. It is said that the walls of Philadelphia, in Turkey, were built of the bones of Christians killed in the Holy Wars. This idle tale has gained credit from the nature of the stones, full of pores and very light, not unlike petrified bones. Similar incrustations are found at Knaresborough and elsewhere.

Philander (in Orlando Furioso). A sort of Joseph. (See Gabrina .)

Philandering Coquetting with a woman; paying court, and leading her to think you love her, but never declaring your preference. The word is coined from Philander, the Dutch knight who coquetted with Gabrina (q.v.).

Philanthropist (The). John Howard, who spent much of his life in visiting the prisons and hospitals of Europe. (1726-1790.) (Greek, phil-anthropos.)

Philemon and Baucis entertained Jupiter and Mercury when everyone else refused them hospitality. Being asked to make a request, they begged that they might both die at the same time. When they were very old, Philemon was changed into an oak, and Baucis into a linden tree. (Ovid: Metamorphoses, iii. 631, etc.)

Philip Philip, remember thou art mortal. A sentence repeated to the Macedonian king every time he gave an audience.
   Philip sober. When a woman who asked Philip of Macedon to do her justice was snubbed by the petulant monarch, she exclaimed, “Philip, I shall appeal against this judgment.” “Appeal!” thundered the enraged king, “and to whom will you appeal?” “To Philip sober,” was her reply.
   St. Philip is usually represented bearing a large cross, or a basket containing loaves, in allusion to St. John vi. 5-7.

Philip Nye (in Hudibras). One of the assembly of Dissenting ministers, noted for his ugly beard.

Philip Quarl A castaway sailor, solaced off a desert island by a monkey. Imitation of Robinson Crusoe. (1727.)

Philippe Egalite Louis Philippe Joseph, Duc d'Orléans (1747-1793).

  By PanEris using Melati.

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