(St.), according to tradition, carried his head, after
martyrdom, for six miles, and then deliberately laid it down on the
spot where stands the present cathedral bearing his name. This absurd
tale took its rise from an ancient painting, in which the
artist, to represent the martyrdom of the bishop, drew a headless body;
but, in order that the trunk might be recognised, placed the head in
front, between the martyr's hands.
Sir Denys Brand,
in Crabbe's Borough,
is a country magnate who apes humility.
He rides on a sorry brown pony “not worth £5,” but mounts his lackey on
a racehorse, “twice victor for a plate.” Sir Denys Brand is the type of
a character by no means uncommon.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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