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Blue Stocking

A female pedant. In 1400 a soeiety of ladies and gentlemen was formed at Venice, distinguished by the colour of their stockings, and called della calza. It lasted till 1590, when it appeared in Paris and was the rage among the lady savantes. From France it came to England in 1780, when Mrs. Monʹtague displayed the badge of the Bas-bleu club at her evening assemblies. Mr. Benjamin Stillingfleet was a constant attendant of the soirées. The last of the clique was Miss Monckton, afterwards Countess of Cork, who died 1840.

“‘You used to be fond enough of books … a regular blue-stocking Mr. Bland called you.ʹ”—E. S. Phelps: The Gates Ajar, chap. iv.

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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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Blue Moon
Blue Mould
Blue Murder
Blue-noses
Blue Peter
Blue-pigeon Flyer
Blue Ribbon (The)
Blue Ribbon (A)
Blue Ruin
Blue Squadron (The)
Blue Stocking
Blue Talk
Blue Wonder (A)
Blue and Red
Blue and Yellow (The)
Blues (The)
Bluff (To)
Bluff Harry or Hal
Blunderbore
Blunderbuss
Blunt

Linking here:

Bas Bleu
Blue (A)
Stocking

See Also:

Blue-stocking