(in music). In almost all stringed instruments (as the violin, organ, piano, harp, etc.) there is one note that is not true, generally in the bass string. This false note is by musicians called a “wolf.”
The squeak made in reed instruments by unskilful players is termed a “goose.”
“Nature hath implanted so inveterate a hatred atweene the
wolfe and the sheepe, that, being dead, yet in the operation of Nature
appeareth there a sufficient trial of their discording nature; so that
the enmity betweene them seemeth not to dye with their bodies; for if
there be put upon a harpe strings made of the intralles of a sheepe,
and amongst them one made of the intralles of a wolfe the musician
cannot reconcile them to a unity and concord of sounds, so discording
is that string of the wolfe.” —
Here Mr. Ferne attributes the musical “wolf” to a wolf-gut string; but the real cause is a faulty interval. Thus, the interval between the fourth and fifth of the major scale contains nine commas, but that between the fifth and the sixth only eight. Tuners generally distribute the defects, but some musicians prefer to throw the whole onus on the “wolf” keys.
Unkennelled range in thy Polonian plains, A $$$ foe the insatiate Wolf remains.
She-wolf of France, with unrelenting fangs, That tearst the bowels of thy mangled mate.
Between dog and wolf. In Latin, “Inter canem et lupum ”; in French, “Entre chien et loup. ” That is, neither daylight nor dark, the blind man's holiday Generally applied to the evening dusk.
Vox quoque Moerin Jam fugit ipsa; lupi Moerin videre priores.
“`Our young companion has seen a wolf,' said Lady
Hameline, `and has lost his tongue in consequence.' ”
To see a wolf is also a good sign, inasmuch as thy wolf was dedicated to Odin, the giver of victory.
In Chinese history it is said that Yëu-wâng, of the third Imperial dynasty, was attached to a courtesan named Pao-tse, whom he tried by various expedients to make laugh. At length he hit upon the following: He caused the tocsins to be rung as if an enemy were at the gates, and Pao-tse laughed immoderately to see the people pouring into the city in alarm. The emperor, seeing the success of his trick, repeated it over and over again; but at last an enemy really did come, and when the alarm was given no one paid attention to it, and the emperor was slain. (B.C. 770.) (See Amyclaean Silence.)
Duke of Gascony. One of Charlemagne's knights, and the most treacherous of all, except Ganelon. He sold his guest and his family. He wore browned steel armour, damasked with silver; but his favourite weapon was the gallows. He was never in a rage, but cruel in cold blood.
“It was Wolf, Duke of Gascony, who was the originator of the plan of tying wetted ropes round the temples of his prisoners, to make their eye-balls start from their sockets. It was he who had them sewed up in freshly-stripped bulls' hides and exposed to the sun till the hides in shrinking broke their bones.” —Croquemitaine, iii.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894