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Cats out of the bag

Posted by John Simmins on October 31, 2000

In Reply to: Cats out of the bag posted by ESC on October 11, 2000

: : I have heard that this origin is from another story of"way back when" when in the old times in the barter system , that a baby pig was a great bartering item, and when you went down to the market you would bring a baby pig in a bag. Ofcourse a lesser man would attempt to " get one over" on the seller by disguising a baby pig with a cat in the bag instead. And on the way to the market the very lively CAT would find its way out of the bag to let every one know that it was a sham, hence the phrase " The cats out of the bag ". CAn any one validate this story?

: I agree with your theory. But there others. Search through the archives under "bag" for additional viewpoints.

That is why you never "buy a pig in a poke" (poke is another word for bag I've heard in West Virginia).