The meaning of, and background to, the well-known expression "A finger in every pie."
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Jan 14, 2004 Wordplay
A F I E Pie
A finger in every pie
To be active in many things, often with the implication that the person is overactive to the point of being a busy body
This old saying presumably originated with kitchen visitors who couldn't resist testing the food by sticking a finger into it, and licking said finger. An early literary reference is...
Lusatia... must needs, forsooth, have her Finger in the Pye
From Parival's Historie of This Iron Age by Bartholomew Harris (1601)
Shakespeare used it in Henry VIII, in which the Duke of Buckingham refers to Cardinal Wolsey, saying...
"The devil speed him! no man's pie is freed
From this ambitious finger".
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