[Ads-l] Motto: Nits will be lice. (Request EEBO verification in 1683)

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Wed Dec 16 19:28:49 UTC 2015

Excellent; thanks JL. Perhaps this citation will someday be pertinent
to your efforts studying the literature of war. The saying was
included in an epistolary novel circa 1720.

On Wed, Dec 16, 2015 at 1:41 PM, Jonathan Lighter
<wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      Re: Motto: Nits will be lice. (Request EEBO verification in 1683)
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> The whole paragraph, from  John Nalson, LL: D., _An impartial collection of
> the great affairs of state. From the beginning of the Scotch rebellion in
> the year MDCXXXIX...._  Vol. II. Published by His Majesty's special command.
> P. [vii]:
> There is not any one particular which hath been Exaggerated with more
> vehemence then the Cruelty of the Rebels, by Sir *John Temple,* Dr.
> *Borlase,* and others; and doubtless their Cruelty was strange and
> barbarous; but then on the other side there is not the least mention of any
> Cruelty exercised upon the *Irish,* or of the hard measure they received
> from some of the Board in *Ireland,* who were of the Parliamentarian
> Faction, and *Scottish *Religion, which rendred them desperate, and made
> the Rebellion Universal; they take no notice of the Severities of the
> Provost Martials, nor of the Barbarism of the Soldiers to the *Irish,* which
> was such, that I have heard a Relation of my own, who was a Captain in that
> Service, Relate, that no manner of Compassion or Discrimination was shewed
> either to Age or Sex, but that the little Children were promiscuously
> Sufferers with the Guilty, and that if any who had some grains of
> Compassion reprehended the Soldiers for this unchristian Inhumanity, they
> would scoffingly reply, *Why? Nits will be Lice,* and so would dispatch
> them: And certainly as to acknowledge an undeniable Truth, does in no
> manner Excuse the barbarous Cruelty of the Rebels; so to deny or smother
> Matters of Fact, so easily to be proved, even by many Protestants still
> alive, has given the Papists the advantage to bring into Question,
> especially in Foreign Courts and Countries, the truth of all those inhumane
> Cruelties which are charged upon them by such Writers as are found Guilty
> of such manifest Partiality.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list