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Quail

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A bird, said to be very salacious, hence a prostitute or courtesan.

“Here’s Agamemnon, an honest fellow enough, and one that loves quails.”—Shakespeare: Troilus and Cressida, v. 1.


The Iliad of Homer is based on the story that Agamemnon, being obliged to give up his mistress, took the mistress of A chilles to supply her place. This brought about a quarrel between Agamemnon and Achilles, and A chilles refused to have anything more to do with the siege of Troy.

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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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