Posted by ESC on November 23, 2004
In Reply to: "You pays your money and you takes your choice." posted by fred portnoy on November 23, 2004
: I used this phrase today, and someone asked me where it came from. Help!
Googling found this: Punch, a English humorous weekly periodical, 1841-1992. Quotations:
You pays your money and you takes your choice. (vol.10, p.17, 1846)
Another source is in agreement with the above -- it is Cockney speech recorded in Punch in 1846. From "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases: American and British from the Sixteenth Century to the Present Day" by Eric Partridge, updated and edited by Paul Beal, Scarborough House, Lanham, Md., 1992)