Posted by R. Berg on March 30, 2003
In Reply to: Pull the other one, it's got bells on posted by Yasmin Mazur on March 30, 2003
: Can someone help me with the ORIGIN of THIS expression?
: I'm not looking for it's meaning, I know it's when someone doesn't believe what was said. I'm not looking for the origin of Pulling my leg either - just the phrase Pull The Other One, It's Got Bells On.
: BTW - what is the connection between the bells and someone's leg? Doesn't seem relevant, just two expressions that got confused together.
"A Dictionary of Catch Phrases American and British," by Eric Partridge, has an entry for this phrase. It says just a little about the origin: "Frank Shaw attributed it to the 1920s" (no, I don't know who he was) and "Presumably from pictures of court jesters, wearing cap and bells."