That would be "Pulcinella" in Italian. The Anglicised version is
somewhat less common.
Nevertheless, considering the number of irritating "out of office"
messages we all get from Larry Lempert, I could easily subscribe to
the quote you offered:
"Oh! how my fingers itch to pull thy nose! As pleased as Punch, I'd
hold it in my gripe."
On Thu, Feb 24, 2011 at 10:31 AM, Paola Kathuria <paola_at_limov.com> wrote:
> Larry Lempert wrote:
>> [I] will be pleased as punch to get back to you
> I've heard "pleased as punch" before but never knew where
> it came from. I just looked it up in the OED.
> Punch is the short form of Punchinello, the name of a
> Neapolitan hook-nosed, humpbacked character in the
> commedia dell'arte (yes, the prototype for the later Punch
> and Judy). "Punchinello" was first used in English in 1662.
> The first quotation for "as pleased as Punch" is 1797.
> by W. Gifford in Baviad & Maeiad "Oh! how my fingers itch
> to pull thy nose! As pleased as Punch, I'd hold it in my gripe."
> Oxford English Dictionary
> Third edition, July 2010; online version November 2010
> As you were,
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Received on Thu Feb 24 2011 - 12:07:01 EST