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A growing assortment of words and definitions used in the Early Modern era. See the Guide for more information.
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Sallet

(1) An early form of salad. Also selad, sallade, sallat, salette, and more; Late Latin salare, salatum, to salt; sal, salt. Used figuratively to mean something mixed, usually with pleasant implications. Shakespeare in ALL'S WELL THAT ENDS WELL (1601) says: She was the sweete margerom of the sallet, or rather the hearbe of grace; and in HAMLET: There was no sallets in the lines, to make the matter savoury. By extension, to pick a salad, to do something trivial, salad days, days of green and inexperienced youth (Shakespeare, ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA). (2) A light globular helmet. Probably from Latin caelata (galea) , ornamented (headpiece); caelare, caelatum, to engrave; caelum, a chisel. Shakespeare, in HENRY VI, PART TWO, says: Many a time but for a sallet, my brainpan had bene cleft with a brown bill. Thomas Heywood in EDWARD IV, PART ONE, uses it jestingly of a container: sack sold by the sallet. Also, by metonymy, the head; C. B. Stapylton in HERODIAN HIS IMPERIAL HISTORY (1652): When wine was got into his drunken sallat. The Spanish proverb has it, according to Abraham Hayward's THE ART OF DINING (1852) that it takes four persons to make a proper salad: a spendthrift for oil, a miser for vinegar, a counsellor for salt, and a madman to mix it.
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