Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Cabal’.

 Cab.Cab’ala. 
CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Cabal’.
 
A junto or council of intriguers. One of the Ministries of Charles II. was called a cabal (1670), because the initial letters of its members formed this acrostic: Clifford, Ashley, Buckingham, Arlington, and Lauderdale. This accident may have popularised the word, but, without doubt, we borrowed it from the French cabale, “an intriguing faction,” and Hebrew cab’ala, “secret knowledge.” A junto is merely an assembly; Spanish, junta, a council. (See NOTARICA; TAMMANY RING.)   1
       
“In dark cabals and mighty juntos met.”
       
Thomson.
        “These ministers were emphatically called the Cabal, and they soon made the appellation so infamous that it has never since … . been used except as a term of reproach.”—Macaulay: England, vol. i. chap. ii. p. 165.
 


 Cab.Cab’ala. 

 
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