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South-Sea Scheme or Bubble

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A stock-jobbing scheme devised by Sir John Blunt, a lawyer. The object of the company was to buy up the National Debt, and to be allowed the sole privilege of trading in the South Seas. The £100 shares soon realised ten times that sum, but the whole bubble burst in 1720 and ruined thousands. (1710–1720.) The term is applied to any hollow scheme which has a splendid promise, but whose collapse will be sudden and ruinous. (See Mississippi Bubble.)

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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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Soul Cakes
Soul and Spirit
Soul of a Goose or Capon
Sound
Sound Dues
Sound as a Bell
Sound as a Roach
Soundings
Sour Grapes
Sour Grapeism
South-Sea Scheme or Bubble
Southampton Street (London)
Southampton’s Wise Sons
Southern Gate of the Sun
Soutras
Sovereign
Sow (to rhyme with “now”)
Spa or Spa Water
Spade
Spadish Language (In)
Spafields (London)