Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Back-stair Influence.

 Back-speer (To).Backwardation (Stockbrokers’ term). 
CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Back-stair Influence.
 
Private or unrecognised influence. It was customary to build royal palaces with a staircase for state visitors, and another for those who sought the sovereign upon private matters. If any one wanted a private interview with royalty, it was highly desirable to conciliate those appointed to guard, the back stairs, as they could admit or exclude a visitor.   1
       
“Once, we confess, beneath the patriot’s cloak,
From the cracked bag the dropping guineas broke,
And, jingling down the back stairs, told the crew
‘Old Cato is as great a rogue as you.’”
       
Pope: Epistle to Lord Bathurst, 35–8.
 


 Back-speer (To).Backwardation (Stockbrokers’ term). 

 
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