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Blenheim Steps

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Once noted for an anatomical school, over which Sir Astley Cooper presided. Here “resurrectionists” were sure to find a ready mart for their gruesome wares, for which they received sums of money varying from £3 to £10, and sometimes more. Such phrases “going to Blenheim Steps,” meant going to be dissected, or unearthed from one’s grave.

“The body-snatchers, they have come,

And made a snatch at me;

ʹTis very hard them kind of men

Wonʹt let a body be.

The cock it crows—I must be gone—

My William, we must part;

But Iʹll be yours in death although

Sir Astley has my heart.”


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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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Blazon [Blazonry]
Blé
Blear-eyed (The)
Bleed
Bleeding of a Dead Body (The)
Blefuscu
Bleidablik [vast splendour]
Blemmyes (of Africa)
Blenheim Dog
Blenheim House (Oxfordshire)
Blenheim Steps
Bless
Blessing
Blest
Blikiandabol [splendid misery]
Blimber (Miss)
Blind
The Blind:
Blind Alley (A)
Blind Beggar of Bethnal Green (The)
Blind Department (The)