Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Staff.

 Stable Keys,Staff of Life (The). 
CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Staff.
 
I keep the staff in my own hand. I keep possession; I retain the right. The staff was the ancient sceptre, and therefore, figuratively, it means, power, authority, dignity, etc.   1
   To part with the staff. To lose or give up office or possession. (See above.)   2
       
“Give up your staff, sir, and the king his realm.”
       
Shakespeare: 2 Henry VI., ii. 3.
   To put down one’s staff in a place. To take up one’s residence. The allusion is to the tent-staff: where the staff is placed, there the tent is stretched, and the nomad resides.   3
   To strike my staff. To lodge for the time being.   4
        “Thou mayst see me at thy pleasure, for I intend to strike my staff at yonder hostelry.”—Cæsar Borgia, xv.
 


 Stable Keys,Staff of Life (The). 

 
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