E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Devil looking Over Lincoln. (The).
Sir W. Scott in his Kenilworth has, Like the Devil looking over Lincoln. A correspondent of Notes and Queries, September 10th, 1892, says
The famous devil that used to overlook Lincoln College, in Oxford, was taken down (Wednesday, September 15th, 1731), having about two years since [previously] lost his head in a storm.Gentlemans Magazine, 1831, p. 402.
We have other similar phrases, as The devil looking over Durham.