It's vitally important that you should know that hackles (those things that are so often up in this boxing ring that we call the world) are the feathers on the back of a cockerel's neck, which rise when he is angry.
Cocks are terribly violent creatures and, like Mancunians, one need only trap a pair of them together in a pit to be guaranteed an amusing fight to the death.
Cockpits are rather cramped and horrid, so naval officers used to refer to their poky little quarters at the front of the boat as the cockpit. Then RAF officers stole the joke and used cockpit for the little cabin at the front of a plane. Then they turned on the autopilot and fell fast asleep.
On the limitations of the Globe theatre:
...can this cockpit hold The vasty fields of France? or may we cram Within this wooden O the very casques That did affright the air at Agincourt?
- Henry V
The Inky Fool was astonished to find what was going on in his cellar
The Horologicon is a book of the strangest and most beautiful words in the English language arranged by the hour of the day when you will really need them. Words for breakfast, for commuting, for working, for dining, for drinking and for getting lost on the way home. It runs from uhtceare (sadness before dawn) to curtain lecture (a telling off given by your spouse in bed). It's out on November the first, but you can already order it from these lovely people: