(1 syl.). The sacred stone of the Caaba (q.v.) is,
according to Arab tradition, the guardian angel of Paradise turned into
stone. When first built by Abraham into the wall of the shrine it was
clear as crystal, but it has become black from being kissed by sinful
A flint with a natural perforation through it. Sometimes hung on
the key of an outside door to ward off the hags. Sometimes such a stone
used to be hung round the neck “for luck”; sometimes on the bedstead to
prevent nightmare; and sometimes on a horse-collar to ward off
Leave no stone unturned. Omit no minutiae if you would succeed. After
the defeat of Mardonius at Platæa (B.C. 477), a report was current that
the Persian General had left great treasures in his tent. Polycrates (4
syl.) the Theban sought long but found them not. The Oracle of Delphi,
being consulted, told him “to leave no stone unturned,” and the
treasures were discovered.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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