To burn or hang one in effigy. To burn or hang the
representation of a person, instead of the person himself, in order to
show popular hatred, dislike, or contempt. The custom comes from
France, where the public executioner used to hang the effigy of the
criminal when the criminal himself could not be found.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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