Period glossary : 4
ExpressionMan of December
Nickname for Napoleon III. He was made President of the French Republic December 11, 1848; made his coup d'état December 2, 1851; and was made Emperor December 2, 1852.(E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898) The term/criticism was invented by Victor Hugo in the poem Châtiments published in 1853. This criticism was then […]
ExpressionMan of Sedan
and, by a pun, M. Sedantaire (Mr. Sedentary) Nicname for Napoleon III. [He] was so called, because he surrendered his sword to William, King of Prussia, after the battle of Sedan (September 2, 1870). (E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898) Napoleon III was the subject of a number of […]
ExpressionMan of Silence
Nickname for Napoleon III, [due to] his great taciturnity. (E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898) This is a German expression, still used, coined by Oskar Meding in a book about the German war which ended with the battle of Sadowa in 1866. For Sceptre and Crown, written under the pseudonym Gregor […]
The 'darned Mounseer' of Gilbert and Sullivan fame was British Navy slang for Frenchmen, itself a corruption of 'Monsieur'.