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Isabelle

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The colour so called is the yellow of soiled calico. A yellow-dun horse is called in France un cheval isabelle. The tale is attached to Isabel of Austria and Isabel of Castile. It is said that Isabel of Austria, daughter of Philip II., at the siege of Ostend vowed not to change her linen till the place was taken. As the siege lasted three years, we may well suppose that it was somewhat soiled by three yearsʹ wear.

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“His colour was isabel, a name given in allusion to the whimsical vow of Isabella Clara Eugenia, Governess of the Netherlands, at the memorable siege of Ostend, which lasted from 1601 till 1604.”—Dillon: Travels in Spain (1781).

Isabel of Castile, we are told, made a vow to the Virgin not to change her linen till Granaʹda fell into her hands; but this siege lasted longer than ladies are wont to wear their body-linen.

“Bright-Sun was mounted on a black horse, that of Felix was a grey, Chery’s was white as milk, and the princess’s an isabelle.”—Countess dʹAlnois: Fair-star and Prince Chery.

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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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Irspilles Felles
Irtish Ferry
Irus
Irvingites
Isaac
Isaac of York
Isabel
Isabella
Isabella
Isabelle or Isabella (in Orlando Furioso)
Isabelle
Isaf
Isenbras or Sir Isumbras
Isengrin or Sir Isgrim
Iseult
Ishban
Ishbosheth
Ishmonie
Isiac Tablet
Isidorian Decretals
Isinglass