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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 9.djvu/426

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NOTES AND QUERIES. [9 th s. ix. MAY 24, 1902.

encyclopaedic German - English dict^pnary, which was completed last year.


HARVEST BELL (9 th S. viii. 201, 308, 427 ; ix. 15, 231). Long ago in Swiss pedestrianism, in addition to the noonday village bell, I heard one rang one hour earlier. To my question as to the ground of this custom, it was answered that many women worked in the fields side by side with their husbands, and that it was necessary for them to go home an hour before noon for preparing the midday meal as well as to care for the children. JAMES D. BUTLER.

" GIGLET" (8 th S. viii. 271 ; ix. 114). The following extract from the criticism furnished in the Era of 12 April, by its Paris corre- spondent, of ' Gigolette,' an Ambigu drama, by MM. Pierre Decourcelle and Edrnond Tarbe, is a striking addition to what has already been written as to the meaning of the word giglet :

"An interesting melodrama, one of the best M. Decourcelle ever wrote, which obtained gi"eat popular favour when originally produced at the Ambigu nine or ten years ago, has been revived there with equal promise of success. Its title needs explanation, I should think, for English readers, and the task is both risky and unpalatable. Some dozen years ago the word was added to Parisian slang by a song that obtained popularity in the music-halls. It signifies a woman of the lowest class, one of those wretched beings who ply their miserable trade on our outer boulevards,

found in the following official advertisement, | issued in December, 1896 :

" Launceston Christmas Market. In consequence I f Christmas Day next falling on a Saturday, notice I 3 hereby given that the Launceston Christmas Market, which would otherwise be held on that day, will be held on Thursday, the 23rd day of December next. No alteration will be made in the I date of the Launceston Giglet's market, which will be held on Saturday, the 1st day of January, 1897. By order of the Town Council. C. H. Peter, Town Clerk."


TENNIS : ORIGIN OF THE NAME (9 th S. ix. 27, 75, 153, 238, 272). If the O.H.G. tenni, modern German die Tenne, threshing - floor, had been taken over by Old French, it would have been organically changed ; besides, there is no indication of its existence there. And if it had been adopted from German at a much later period by the French without organic alteration, it ought to be shown, first, when and why this took place, that in Ger- many the word Tenne was ever connected with the game of tennis, and that the French made the acquaintance of the latter through their eastern neighbours.

MR. JULIAN MARSHALL is not right in his statement that the word tenez never meant and never means " take it." He need only take up Littre's great dictionary ; this is what he will find under tenir, 1, p. 2181, second column :

Absolument. Tiens, tenez, prend, prenez. 'Tiens,

under the cegis of a protector or 'bully,' who lives on the unfortunate creature's earnings, and wallops her into the bargain. He is a gigolo, she a gigolette. When the piece first appeared a discussion was opened in one of the Paris papers regarding the etymology of the word, and its origin seems to date back much further than the song which brought it into common use. The reader has only to take up his English dictionary, however, and he will dis- cover it there as 'giglot,' derived from 'gigtrle,' while Shakespearian scholars may remember that the immortal bard used it occasionally. In ' Cym- beline' (Act III. scene i.) we find the Queen exclaiming : ' The famed Cassibelan, who was once at point giglot fortune ! to master Caesar's sword'; in ' 1 King Henry IV.' (Act IV. scene vii.) John Talbot tells Joan of Arc that he ' was not born to be the pillage of a giglot wench ' ; and in 'Measure for Measure' (Act V. scene i.) Escalus says, 'Away with those giglots,' alluding to Mariana and Isabella, who, by-the-by, were nothing of the sort. Everything is to be found in Shakespeare, as we know, but who could have dreamt of his supplying titles for cafe-concert ditties and Ambigu melodramas, as seems to have been really the case in the present instance?"

The word, of course, is still used in some parts of this country as signifying young people in general and female farm-servants in particular ; and its employment by the town clerk of a municipal body is to be

voila de quoi vaincre ettaureaux et gens d'armes.' Corneille, ' Toison d'Or,' iv. 4. ' Tenez, lui dit-il, votre anneau.' Fenelon, t. xix. p. 29, ' Rosimond et Bra- minte.' H s'emploie aussi a une personne que Ton frappe, qui suoit quelque mauvais traitement. ' Tiens, tiens, voila le coup que je t'ai reserve.' Racine, ' Andromaque,' v. 5.

And this meaning tiens, tenez, have kept ; you may hear it used every day for voila, prends, prenez. With this I do not intend to say, of course, that modern French tennis- players employ it when serving a ball.




The Mystery of William Shakespeare. By

Honour Judge Webb. (Longmans & Co.) IT is narrated concerning some humourist that, weary of the discussion concerning the authorship of the plays attributed to Shakespeare, he declared that he had come to the conclusion that they were not written by William Shakespeare, but by another man of the same name living in the same epoch. So strangely does "the whirligig of time" bring " in his revenges " that the jeu d' esprit of yesterday is the sober argument of to-day. In a book which he qualifies as " a summary of evidence," and in which he treats with respect his immediate pre-