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hangman — “The little,” MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING, iii. 2. 10. Farmer says that this character of Cupid is from Sidney's Arcadia (B. ii. p. 156, ed. 1598), where we are told that Jove appointed Cupid
“In this our world a hangman for to be
Of all those fooles that will haue all they see.” Perhaps so; and see the preceding article. But qy. does Shakespeare use hangman here as equivalent to “rascal, rogue”? (In Johnson's Dict. sub“Hangman,” the present passage is cited to exemplify the word employed as a term of reproach.) It is at least certain that “hangman” having come to signify “an executioner in general,” was afterwards used as a general term of reproach (So in Guy Earl of Warwick, a Tragedy, printed in 1661, but acted much earlier: “Faith, I doubt you are some lying hangman ” sig. E 3 verso) . [that is, rascal],

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