Plebeians to Pluck

Plebeians Common people; properly it means the free citizens of Rome, who were neither patricians nor clients. They were, however, free landowners, and had their own “gentës.” (Latin, plebes, 2 syl.)

Plebiscite (3 syl.). A decree of the people. In Roman history, a law enacted by the “comitia” or assembly of tribes. In France, the resolutions adopted in the Revolution by the voice of the people, and the general votes given during the Second Empire- such as the general vote to elect Napoleon III. emperor of the French.

Pledge I pledge you in this wine- i.e. I drink to your health or success.

“Drink to me only with thine eyes,
And I will pledge with mine.”
Ben Jonson (translated from Philostratus)
second century.
   To pledge. To guarantee. Pledging a drinker's security arose in the tenth century, when it was thought necessary for one person to watch over the safety of a companion while in the act of drinking. It was by no means unusual with the fierce Danes to stab a person under such circumstances.

“If I
Were a huge man, I should fear to drink at meals,
Lest they should spy my windpipe's dangerous notes.
Great men should drink with harness on their throats.” Timon of Athens, i.2.
Pleiades (3 syl.) means the “sailing stars” (Greek, pleo, to sail), because the Greeks considered navigation safe at the return of the Pleiades, and never attempted it after those stars disappeared.
   The PLEIADES were the seven daughters of Atlas and Pleione Plhiouh. They were transformed into stars, one of which (Merope) is invisible out of shame, because she alone married a human being. Some call the invisible star “Electra,” and say she hides herself from grief for the destruction of the city and royal race of Troy.
   i. The Pleiad of Alexandria. A group of seven contemporary poets in the reign of Ptolemy Philadelphos; so called in reference to the cluster of stars in the back of Taurus. Their names are- Callimachos, Apollonios of Rhodes, Aratos, Philiscos (called Homer the Younger), Lycophron, Nicander, and Theocritos.
    There are in reality eleven stars in the Pleiades.
   ii. The literary Pleiad of Charlemagne. Alcuin (Albinus), Angilbert (Homer), Adelard (Augustine), Riculfe (Damaetas), Charlemagne (David), Varnefrid, and Eginhard.
   iii. The first French Pleiad. Seven contemporary poets in the sixteenth century, in the reign of Henri III., who wrote French poetry in the metres, style, and verbiage of the ancient Greek and Latin poetry. Of these, Ronsard was by far the most talented; but much that would be otherwise excellent is spoilt by pedantry and Frenchified Latin. The seven names are Ronsard, Dorat, Du Bellay, Remi-Belleau, Jodelle, Baïf, and Thiard.
   The second French Pleiad. Seven contemporary poets in the reign of Louis XIII., very inferior to the “first Pleiad.” Their names are Rapin, Commire, Larue, Santeuil, Ménage, Dupénier, and Petit.
   iv. The lost Pleiad. Electra, one of the Pleiades, wife of Dardanus, disappeared a little before the Trojan war (B.C. 1193), that she might be saved the mortification of seeing the ruin of her beloved city. She showed herself occasionally to mortal eye, but always in the guise of a comet. Mons. Fréret says this tradition arose from the fact that a comet does sometimes appear in the vicinity of the Pleiades, rushes in a northerly direction, and passes out of sight. (See Odyss. v. and Iliad, xviii.)
   Letitia Elizabeth Landon published, in 1829, a poem entitled The Lost Pleiad.
   (See above, Pleiades.)

Plet is a lash like a knout, but not made of raw hides. (Russian, pletu, a whip.)

Pleydell (Mr. Paulus). An advocate in Edinburgh, formerly sheriff of Ellangowan.

“Mr. Counsellor Pleydell was a lively, sharp-looking gentleman, with a professional shrewdness in his eye, and, generally speaking, a professional formality in his manner; but this he could slip off on a Saturday evening when ... he joined in the ancient pastime of High Jinks.”- Sir. W. Scott: Guy Mannering. xxxix.
Pliable One of Christian's neighbours, who went with him as far as the Slough of Despond, and then turned back again. (Bunyan: Pilgrim's Progress, pt. i.)

Pliny The German Pliny. Konrad von Gesner, of Zürich (1516-1565).
   Pliny of the East. (See Zakarija.)

Pliny's Doves In one of the rooms on the upper floor of the museum of the Capitol at Rome are the celebrated Doves of Pliny, one of the finest and most perfectly preserved specimens of ancient mosaic. It represents four doves drinking, with a beautiful border surrounding the composition. The mosaic is

  By PanEris using Melati.

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