All my eye and Betty Martin

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8 comments on this post.
  1. C. Kingsman:

    FYI. Robertson Davies is a well known Canadian author. Great stories. Try him.

  2. Lynne:

    Is it possible that Betty Martin is rhyming slang for something else? It certainly has the feel of that.

  3. vi mcquarrie:

    I use the saying ‘all me eye and betty martin’ most of the time! and it was used frequently when I was a child.(And, no, I wasn’t born in the 1700’s and neither did I come over with the vikings, as my children believe!)I have always associated it with someone telling you something, that isn’t quite kosher, b.s. in fact!
    Sorry I can’t give any info other than the fact I still use it and it sounds a lot better than b.s.!!!

  4. D.J. Conlon:

    I have always understood that “All my eye and Betty Martin” meaning “Rubbish” or “Gibberish” was a soldier’s interpretation of “Aidez-moi, Beate Martin”, an ejaculation uttered by French soldiers under stress. Similar phrases such as Toodle-loo for “Tout a l’Heure” date at least from the 1914-18 War.

  5. Anonymous:

    This phrase In Agatha Christie’s story “Strange Jest”

  6. Maribeth Zay Fischer:

    Phrase used at p. 215 in British Poet Laureate John Mansefueld’s children’s fantasy THE MIDNIGHT FOLK

  7. Darren Rees:

    I Googled the phrase which my Dad used to use and it brought me here. It’s not quite the same but it’s definitely a derivation if it. He used to say: “What a load of Balderdash, Betty Martin and my eye.”. I use it sometimes now and when I do, people stare at me like a dog that’s been shown a card trick.

  8. Jeremy Parrott:

    When I was growing up in London’s East End in the 1950s we had a next door neighbour called – you guessed it – Betty Martin. As my parents commonly used the expression ‘All my eye and Betty Martin’, I (erroneously as it turns out) both associated its origin with the neighbour and came to believe that everything she said was nonsense. Responding to earlier posts, I’m inclined to believe the expression comes from mangled Latin, probably used by Church of England ultras ridiculing the Catholic notion of intercession by saints.

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