Posted by Bruce Kahl on May 23, 2000
In Reply to: His name is Mudd! posted by James Briggs on May 23, 2000
I think Doctor Mudd's name is certainly no more than an interesting coincidence, for it cannot have been the source of the phrase. "Mud" had already been in use for more than 200 years, since at least 1708, as a slang term for a fool. According to Christine Ammer, in her book "Have A Nice Day -- No Problem!" (a very fine dictionary of cliches published by Plume), "mud" was commonly applied in the 19th century British Parliament to any member who lost an election or otherwise disgraced himself.