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Ignis Fatʹuus

means strictly a fatuous fire it is also called. “Jack Lantern,” “Spunkie,” “Walking Fire,” “Will the Wisp,” and “Fair Maid of Ireland.” Milton calls it Friar’s Lanthern, and Sir Walter Scott Friar Rush with a lantern. Morally speaking, a Utoʹpian scheme, no more reducible to practice than the meteor so called can be turned to any useful end. (Plural, Ignes fatŭi.) (See Friar’s Lanthorn.)

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“When thou rannest up Gadshill in the night to catch my horse, if I did not think thou hadst been an ignis fatuous or a ball of wildfire, there’s no purchase in money.”—Shakespeare: 1 Henry IV., iii. 3.

⁂ According to a Russian superstition, these wandering fires are the spirits of still-born children which flit between heaven and the Inferno.

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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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Idomeneus
Iduna or Idun
Ifakins
Ifreet or Afreet or Afrit
Ifurin
Igerna, Igerne, or Igrayne
Ignaro
Ignatius (St.)
Ignatius Loyola
Igneous Rocks
Ignis Fatuus
Ignoramus
Ignoramus Jury (An)
Ignorantines
Igrayne
Ihram
Il Pastor Fido [the Faithful Swain]
Iliad
Iliad of Ills (An)
Ilk
Ill-got, Ill-spent

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Wisp