Posted by John sword on October 13, 2001
In Reply to: As the actress said to the bishop posted by Heidi on February 22, 2000
Miss Margot Charlton at the Oxford English Dictionary Word and Language
Service [OWLS]advises me as follows:
"I very much doubt that anyone can claim exact knowledge of tghe origin ..... the earliest example we have discovered ..... dates from 1935, but it is highly likely that the phrase was used in speech long before this written version appeared".
The writtn version referred to is noted in the 20-volume OED as from Saint in New York by Leslie Charteris.
The definition of the phrase is: a catch-phrase mischievously implying a sexual innuendo in a preceeding remark.