Posted by ESC on October 03, 2005
In Reply to: Cat out of the bag posted by Lewis on October 03, 2005
: I was watching "Antiques Roadshow" and their S&M expert was looking at a cat-o'-nine-tails and mentioned that the item was responsible for a number of English phrases including 'letting the cat out of the bag' and 'room to swing a cat'.
: Do TV experts peddle folk-etymology or are they bastions of truth?
I vote: folk etymology. See "cat bag" for previous discussion of the theories.