Lie

(Anglo-Saxon, lige, a falsehood.)

Father of lies.
Satan (John viii. 44).

The greatest lie.
The four P's (a Palmer, a Pardoner, a Poticary, and a Pedlar) disputed as to which could tell the greatest lie. The Palmer said he had never seen a woman out of patience; whereupon the other three P's threw up the sponge, saying such a falsehood could not possibly be outdone. (Heywood: The Four P's.)

White lies.
(See White.)

Lie Circumstantial

(The) or The lie with circumstance. Sir, if you said so, it was a lie. As Touchstone says, this insult is voidable by this means- “If you said so, I said it was a lie,” but the word “if” makes the insult hypothetical. This is the lie direct in the second degree or once removed. (See Countercheck.)

Lie Direct

(The). Sir, that's a lie. You are a liar. This is an offence no gentleman can take.

One day as I was walking, with my customary swagger,
Says a fellow to me, `Pistol, you're a coward, though a bragger.'
Now, this was an indignity no gentleman could take, sir;
So I told him flat and plump. `You lie- (under a mistake sir).'
Lie Quarrelsome

(The). To tell one flat and plump “You lie.” Touchstone calls this “the countercheck quarrelsome.”

“If again [the fifth time] it was not well cut, he would say I lied: this is called the countercheck quarrelsome.” —Shakespeare: As You Like It, v 4

Lie hath no Feet

(A). Because it cannot stand alone. In fact, a lie wants twenty others to support it, and even then is in constant danger of tripping

Lie

(Anglo-Saxon, licgan, to `bide or rest; but lie, to deceive, is the Anglo-Saxon verb leog-an.)

Lie heavy on him, earth, for he
Laid many a heavy load on thee

This is part of Dr. Evan's epitaph on Sir John Vanbrugh, the comic poet, herald, and architect. “The heavy loads” referred to were Blenheim, Greenwich Hospital (which he finished), Castle Howard in Yorkshire, and other massive buildings. (1666-1726.)

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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