Rich pickings

Posted by R. Berg on September 16, 2005

In Reply to: Rich pickings posted by Colin on September 16, 2005

: Can anyone enlighten me as to the origin of the phrase "rich pickings"?

: My guess is that it refers to the (mainly) women who would during the nepoleonic wars (after a battle had ended) trawl the dead bodies left on battlefields for anything of value.

I associate it with gold mining, but I don't know that that's its origin.