shake the pagoda tree

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shake the pagoda tree

dated To obtain or earn money very quickly and readily, especially in colonial India during its time as part of the British Empire. A pun referencing the pagoda, a gold coin formerly issued in various dynasties of southern India, and the Plumeria rubra, a deciduous plant commonly called the "pagoda tree." By securing illegal inside deals with politicians and local business authorities, Sir Fleetwood looked to shake the pagoda tree for everything it was worth.
See also: shake, tree