itchy palm

an itchy palm

What one is said to have when they need or want a tip or bribe. A: "I can't believe that guy at the desk actually answered all of your questions!" B: "Ah, he just had an itchy palm—a little money made him more inclined to talk."
See also: itchy, palm
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

*itchy palm

 and *itching palm
Fig. [of a hand] in need of a tip. (As if placing money in the palm would stop the itching. *Typically: get ~; have ~; give someone ~.) All the waiters at that restaurant have itchy palms. The cabdriver was troubled by an itching palm. Since he refused to carry my bags, I gave him nothing. Whenever he sees expensive luggage, the hotel doorman gets an itching palm.
See also: itchy, palm
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

itchy palm

Also, itching palm. A desire for money, greed; also, wanting a bribe. For example, The porter has an itchy palm; he wants a big tip, or The mayor was known for his itchy palm. This expression alludes to placing money in the palm of the hand. [Late 1500s]
See also: itchy, palm
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
One couldn't be anything other than delighted for Winlaton gran Marion Richardson who spent pounds 1.50 on a Euro lottery ticket, had an itchy palm and won nearly pounds 17m this week.
Marion, nicknamed Mystic Meg by her family because of her love of astrology and tarot cards, told how an itchy palm gave her an inkling she was onto something.
Ms Richardson, who was medically retired from her job with the Royal Mail five months ago due to thyroid problems, said she often experienced a kind of sixth sense and her grandmother told her of the itchy palm prophecy as a girl.
Alan joked: "She normally only gets an itchy palm just before I hand over the wages."
Viv said: "I had itchy palms. I really wanted to phone in and say, 'Can I come in.' Not because I was relishing the story but because I wanted to be part of something.
Tommin, a nineteenth-century shoemaker's apprentice, suffers from itchy palms and a compulsion to steal gold and silver.
There is a superstition that if you have itchy palms or nose, money is on its way to you.
Once I've taken care of Fred and Dora, I will hire a mini-van along with a couple of trusty thugs to cart the rest of the loot down to my local casino, where I will be waiting at the roulette table with itchy palms. "Place your bets messieurs.
Bribery and other financial shenanigans are everyday occurrences in ruling circles, with hordes of party insiders with itchy palms hunting eagerly for political spoils.