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Calves' Head Club

Instituted in ridicule of Charles I. The great annual banquet was held on the 30th January, and consisted of a cod's head, to represent the person of Charles Stuart, independent of his kingly office; a pike with little ones in its mouth, an emblem of tyranny; a boar's head with an apple in its mouth to represent the king preying on his subjects; and calves' heads dressed in sundry ways to represent Charles in his regal capacity. After the banquet, the king's book (Icon Basilikë ) was burnt, and the parting cup was, “To those worthy patriots who killed the tyrant.”

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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