a wise man of Gotham

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a wise man of Gotham

obsolete A thoroughly stupid person; a fool. I have concluded that he is but a wise man of Gotham, and so I cannot in good faith trust him to run any part of my business.
See also: man, of, wise

a wise man of Gotham

a foolish person. dated
Gotham is a village in Nottinghamshire which is associated with the folk story The Wise Men of Gotham, in which the inhabitants of the village demonstrate their cunning by feigning stupidity. Gotham is now a nickname for New York City, used originally by Washington Irvine but later linked particularly with the Batman stories.
See also: man, of, wise
References in classic literature ?
Thus, then, did these three worthies embark in their cockleshell of a skiff upon this nocturnal expedition, with a wisdom and valor equaled only by the three wise men of Gotham,[1] who adventured to sea in a bowl.
[1] "Three wise men of Gotham, They went to sea in a bowl-- And if the bowl had been stronger, My tale had been longer." Mother Goose Melody.
"Three wise men of Gotham went to sea in a bowl," went the Mother Goose rhyme; "and if the bowl had been stronger, then my rhyme had been longer."
The title, for example, is a wry echo of "The Three Wise Men of Gotham," the legend of a village in olde England where citizens mix shrewdness and folly.
THE Wise Men of Gotham thought they could stop the ducks flying away by building a fence round the village pond.
Three wise men of Gotham. They went to Sea in a Bowl.
All due to three wise men of Gotham: Balanchine, the Ford Foundation's W.
Three wise men of Gotham Went to sea in a bowl; If the bowl had been stronger My story had been longer.