E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Prince of the celestial armies, commanded by God to drive the rebel angels out of heaven. Gabriel was next to him in command. (See SEVEN SPIRITS.).
Longfellow, in his Golden Legend, says he is the presiding spirit of the planet Mercury, and brings to man the gift of prudence.
The planet Mercury, whose place
Is nearest to the sun in space.
Is my allotted sphere;
And with celestial ardour swift
I bear upon my hands the gift
Of heavenly prudence here.
The Miracle Play, iii.
St. Michael, in Christian art, is sometimes depicted as a beautiful young man with severe countenance, winged, and either clad in white or armour, bearing a lance and shield, with which he combats a dragon. In the final judgment he is represented with scales, in which he weighs the souls of the risen dead.
St. Michaels chair. It is said that any woman who has sat on St. Michaels chair, Cornwall, will rule the roost as long as she lives.