(See St. Sitha)
of stables and cowhouses have not unfrequently, even at the present day, a stone with a hole through it and a piece of horn attached to the handle. This is a relic of an ancient superstition. The hag, halig, or holy stone was looked upon as a talisman which kept off the fiendish Mara or night-mare; and the horn was supposed to ensure the protection of the god of cattle, called by the Romans Pan.
St. Peter is always represented in Christian art with two keys in his hand; they are consequently the insignia of the Papacy, and are borne saltire-wise, one of gold and the other of silver.
They are the emblems also of St. Servatius, St. Hippolytus, St. Geneviève. St. Petronilla, St. Osyth, St. Martha, and St. Germanus of Paris.
The Bishop of Winchester bears two keys and sword in saltire.
The bishops of St. Asaph, Gloucester, Exeter, and Peterborough bear two keys in saltire.
(The House of). One of the three estates of the Isle of Man. The Crown in council, the governor and his council, and the House of Keys, constitute what is termed “the court of Tynwald.” The House of Keys consists of twenty-four representatives selected by their own body, vacancies are filled up by the House presenting to the governor “two of the eldest and worthiest men of the isle,” one of which the governor nominates. To them an appeal may be made against the verdicts of juries, and from their decision there is no appeal, except to the Crown in council. (Manx, kiare-as-feed, four-and-twenty.)
The governor and his council consists of the governor, the bishop, the attorney-general, two deemsters (or judges), the clerk of the rolls, the water bailiff, the archdeacon, and the vicar-general.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894