If you don't mind a newbie sticking his nose in:
Battle of the Wilderness: American Civil War, Lee vs Grant in a huge, swampy forest. Lots of dead, lots of confusion, not much result.
The Kings Gambit: In chess, a "gambit" is when you sacrifice a piece to gain an advantage. Of course, if you sacrifice the king, you automatically lose..
The Sicilian Defense: Also chess. A style of defensive play that somehow lets you spring a trap on you opponent.
Endgame: Chess, again. The last couple of moves, when there are few remaining pieces and the strategy that you've worked on all game pays off (or not).
A flaming Sword: The traditional weapon the Archangels used to smite the evil-doers.
bearbaiting: Take a bear, chain it to a stake, blind it, set specially bred dogs on it and watch them tear each other apart. Medieval family entertainment.
High Noon: Probably referring to the classic Western where the un-supported sherrif either had to face the bad guys at noon or run.
Straight, No chaser: Drinking phrase. "Give me the scotch and skip the soda (I'm a real man!)"
Their Finest Hour: WWII, Churchill quote describing the British people fighting the Nazis by themselves after the fall of France.
[This message has been edited by Geezer (edited 02-04-2001).]