Character Sketches of Romance Volume I Part 49

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[Ill.u.s.tration] Sir Bors de Granis is quite another person, and so is king Bors of Gaul.

BORRO'MEO (_Charles_), cardinal and archbishop of Milan. Immortalized by his self-devotion in ministering at Mil'an to the plague-stricken (1538-1584).

St. Roche, who died 1327, devoted himself in a similar manner to those stricken with the plague at Piacenza; and Mompesson to the people of Eyam. In 1720-22 H. Francis Xavier de Belsunce was indefatigable in ministering to the plague-stricken of Ma.r.s.eilles.

BORS (_King_) of Gaul, brother of king Ban of Benwicke [Brittany?].

They went to the aid of prince Arthur when he was first established on the British throne, and Arthur promised in return to aid them against king Claudas, "a mighty man of men," who warred against them.--Sir T.

Malory, _History of Prince Arthur_ (1470).

There are two brethren beyond the sea, and they kings both ... the one hight king Ban of Benwieke, and the other hight king Bors of Gaul, that is, France.--Pt. i. 8.

(Sir Bors was of Ganis, that is, Wales, and was a knight of the Round Table. So also was Borre (natural son of prince Arthur), also called sir Bors sometimes.)

_Bors_ (_Sir_), called sir Bors de Ganis, brother of sir Lionell and nephew of sir Launcelot. "For all women he was a virgin, save for one, the daughter of king Brandeg'oris, on whom he had a child, hight Elaine; save for her, sir Bors was a clean maid" (ch. iv.). When he went to Corbin, and saw Galahad the son of sir Launcelot and Elaine (daughter of king Pelles), he prayed that the child might prove as good a knight as his father, and instantly a vision of the holy greal was vouchsafed him; for--

There came a white dove, bearing a little censer of gold in her bill ... and a maiden that bear the Sancgreall, and she said, "Wit ye well, sir Bors, that this child ... shall achieve the Sancgreall" ... then they kneeled down ... and there was such a savor as all the spicery in the world had been there. And when the dove took her flight, the maiden vanished away with the Sancgreall.--Pt. iii. 4.

Sir Bors was with sir Galahad and sir

Percival when the consecrated wafer a.s.sumed the visible and bodily appearance of the Saviour. And this is what is meant by achieving the holy greal; for when they partook of the wafer their eyes saw the Saviour enter it.--Sir T. Malory, _History of Prince Arthur_, iii.

101, 102 (1470).

N.B.--This sir Bors must not be confounded with sir Borre, a natural son of king Arthur and Lyonors (daughter of the earl Sanam, pt. i.

15), nor yet with king Bors of Gaul, _i.e._, France (pt. i. 8).

BORTELL, the bull, in the beast-epic called _Reynard the Fox_ (1498).

BOS'CAN-[ALMOGA'Va], a Spanish poet of Barcelona (1500-1543). His poems are generally bound up with those of Garcila.s.so. They introduced the Italian style into Castilian poetry.

Sometimes he turned to gaze upon his book, Boscan, or Garcila.s.so.

Byron, _Don Juan_, i. 95 (1819).

BOSCOSEL, mysterious being, who brings about a reunion on earth of friends who have long ago departed for the spirit-world.--Francis Howard Williams, _Boscosel_ (1888).

BOSMI'NA, daughter of Fingal king of Morven (north-west coast of Scotland).--Ossian.

BOS'N HILL. In _Poems_ by John Albee (1883) we find a legend of a dead Bos'n (boatswain) whose whistle calls up the dead on stormy nights when

The wind blows wild on Bos'n Hill, But sailors know when next they sail Beyond the hilltop's view, There's one amongst them shall not fail To join the Bos'n's crew.

BOSSU (_Rene le_), French scholar and critic (1631-1680).

And for the epic poem your lords.h.i.+p bade me look at, upon taking the length, breadth, height, and depth of it, and trying them at home upon an exact scale of Bossu's, 'tis out, my lord, in every one of its dimensions.--Sterne (1768).

BOSSUT (_Abbe Charles_), a celebrated mathematician (1730-1814).

(Sir Richard Phillips a.s.sumed a host of popular names, among others that of _M. l'Abbe Bossut_ in several educational works in French.)

BOSTA'NA, one of the two daughters of the old man who entrapped prince a.s.sad in order to offer him in sacrifice on "the fiery mountain."

His other daughter was named Cava'ma. The old man enjoined these two daughters to scourge the prince daily with the bastinado and feed him with bread and water till the day of sacrifice arrived. After a time, the heart of Bostana softened towards her captive, and she released him. Whereupon his brother Amgiad, out of grat.i.tude, made her his wife, and became in time king of the city in which he was already vizier.--_Arabian Nights_ ("Amgiad and a.s.sad").

BOSTOCK, a c.o.xcomb, cracked on the point of aristocracy and family birth. His one and only inquiry is "How many quarterings has a person got?" Descent from the n.o.bility with him covers a mult.i.tude of sins, and a man is no one, whatever his personal merit, who "is not a sprig of the n.o.bility."--James s.h.i.+rley, _The Ball_ (1642).

BOT'ANY (_Father of English_), W. Turner, M.D. (1520-1568).

J.P. de Tournefort is called _The Father of Botany_ (1656-1708).

[Ill.u.s.tration] Antoine de Jussieu lived 1686-1758, and his brother Bernard 1699-1777.

BOTHWELL (_Sergeant_), _alias_ Francis Stewart, in the royal army.--Sir W. Scott, _Old Mortality_ (time, Charles II.).

_Bothwell (Lady)_, sister of lady Forester.

_Sir Geoffrey Bothwell_, the husband of lady Bothwell.

_Mrs. Margaret Bothwell_, in the introduction of the story. Aunt Margaret proposed to use Mrs. Margaret's tombstone for her own.--Sir W. Scott, _Aunt Margaret's Mirror_ (time, William III.).

BOTTLED BEER, Alexander Nowell, author of a celebrated Latin catechism which first appeared in 1570, under the t.i.tle of _Christianae pietatis prima Inst.i.tutio, ad usum Scholarum Latine Scripta_. In 1560 he was promoted to the deanery of St. Paul's (1507-1602).--Fuller, _Worthies of England_ ("Lancas.h.i.+re").

BOTTOM (_Nick_), an Athenian weaver, a compound of profound ignorance and unbounded conceit, not without good-nature and a fair dash of mother-wit. When the play of _Pyramus and Thisbe_ is cast, Bottom covets every part; the lion, Thisbe, Pyramus, all have charms for him.

In order to punish t.i.tan'ia, the fairy-king made her dote on Bottom, on whom Puck had placed an a.s.s's head.--Shakespeare, _Midsummer Night's Dream_.

Bottom. An' I may hide my face; let me play Thisby, too: I'll speak in a monstrous little voice.

Let me play the lion, too; I will roar that I will do any man's heart good to hear me.

_Midsummer Night's Dream_, i. 2.

BOUBEKIR' MUEZ'IN, of Bag dad, "a vain, proud, and envious iman, who hated the rich because he himself was poor." When prince Zeyn Alasnam came to the city, he told the people to beware of him, for probably he was "some thief who had made himself rich by plunder." The prince's attendant called on him, put into his hand a purse of gold, and requested the honor of his acquaintance. Next day, after morning prayers, the iman said to the people, "I find, my brethren, that the stranger who is come to Bag dad is a young prince possessed of a thousand virtues, and worthy the love of all men. Let us protect him, and rejoice that he has come among us."--_Arabian Nights_ ("Prince Zeyn Alasnam").

BOUCHARD (_Sir_), a knight of Flanders, of most honorable descent. He married Constance, daughter of Bertulphe provost of Bruges. In 1127 Charles "the Good," earl of Flanders, made a law that a serf was always a serf till manumitted, and whoever married a serf became a serf. Now, Bertulphe's father was Thancmar's serf, and Bertulphe, who had raised himself to wealth and great honor, was reduced to serfdom because his father was not manumitted. By the same law Bouchard, although a knight of royal blood became Thancmar's serf because he married Constance, the daughter of Bertulphe (provost of Bruges). The result of this absurd law was that Bertulphe slew the earl and then himself, Constance went mad and died, Bouchard and Thancmar slew each other in fight, and all Bruges was thrown into confusion.--S. Knowles, _The Provost of Bruges_ (1836).

BOU'ILLON (_G.o.dfrey duke of_), a crusader (1058-1100), introduced in _Count Robert of Paris_, a novel by Sir W. Scott (time, Rufus).

BOUNCE (_Mr. T_.), a nickname given in 1837 to T. Barnes, editor of the _Times_ (or the _Turnabout_, as it was called).

BOUND'ERBY (_Josiah_), of c.o.ketown, banker and mill-owner, the "Bully of Humility," a big, loud man, with an iron stare and metallic laugh.

Mr. Bounderby is the son of Mrs. Pegler, an old woman, to whom he pays 30 a year to keep out of sight, and in a boasting way he pretends that "he was dragged up from the gutter to become a millionaire." Mr.

Bounderby marries Louisa, daughter of his neighbor and friend, Thomas Gradgrind, Esq., M.P.--C. d.i.c.kens, _Hard Times_ (1854).

BOUNTIFUL (_Lady_), widow of sir Charles Bountiful. Her delight was curing the parish sick and relieving the indigent.

"My lady Bountiful is one of the best of women.

Her late husband, sir Charles Bountiful, left her with 1000 a year; and I believe she lays out one-half on't in charitable uses for the good of her neighbors. In short, she has cured more people in and about Lichfield within ten years than the doctors have killed in twenty; and that's a bold word."--George Farquhar, _The Beaux'

Stratagem_, i. 1 (1705).

Character Sketches of Romance Volume I Part 49

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Character Sketches of Romance Volume I Part 49 summary

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