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Monkey's Allowance

More kicks than halfpence. The allusion is to the monkeys carried about for show; they pick up the halfpence, but carry them to the master, who keeps kicking or ill-treating the poor creatures to urge them to incessant tricks.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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More on Monkey's Allowance from Infoplease:

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