Green’s Dictionary of Slang

mutton n.

[OED suggests ‘food for lust’, but prob. simply an old sheep as opposed to a young lamb]

1. with ref. to women.

(a) a promiscuous woman; a prostitute.

[UK]Skelton Magnyfycence line 2265: And from thens to the halfe strete, To get us there some freshe mete. Why, is there any store of rawe motton? Ye, in faythe.
[UK]J. Bale Comedye Concernyng Three Lawes (1550) Ciii: What wylte thou fall to mutton? [...] Rank loue is full of heate where hungrye dogges lacke meate, They wyll durty puddynges eate For want of befe and conye.
[UK]Greene Frier Bacon and Frier Bungay H3: The old lecher hath gotten holy mutton to him, a Nunne my Lord.
[UK]Dekker & Webster Northward Hoe I i: The Northerne man loues white-meates, the Southery man Sallades, the Essex man a Calfe, the Kentishman a Wag-taile, the Lancashire man an Egg-pie, the Welshman Leekes and Cheese, and your Londoners rawe Mutton.
[UK]Middleton & Dekker Roaring Girle III ii: It cannot sink into me that he feds upon stale mutton abroad, having better and fresher at home.
[UK]Rowley Match at Midnight II i: Young, say she be young, young Mutton’s sweete [...] if like an old Cocke he with young Mutton meetes, he feedes like a Cucklold.
[UK]T. Rawlins Rebellion IV i: No more I say: it is a percell of excellent Mutton: Ile cut it up myselfe.
[UK]Webster Appius and Virginia III i: Muttons mutton now [...] the sinners i’th’ Suburbs had almost tane the name quite away from’t, ’twas so cheap and common.
[UK]Rochester ‘Ramble in St James’s Park’ in Works (1999) 77: Where he had heard Sir Edward Sutton / Say how the King lov’d Bansted Mutton.
[UK]Motteux (trans.) Pantagruelian Prognostications (1927) II 694: Those whom Venus is said to rule, [...] as pandars, procureres, and mutton-brokers.
[UK]N. Ward The Rambling Rakes 3: Being something Indispos’d by a late Debauch [...] during of which I was as Squeamish as Newly Marrried Woman, and lap’d more Mutton-Broth, than a Coutry Dame in the Straw does Oatmeal-Caudle.
[UK]Sporting Mag. Apr. XVI 28/1: Where are the hot mutton-pies that Mother Swipes promised?
[UK]R. Nares Gloss. (1888) II 594: mutton, s. A loose woman; from what allusion it is not easy to say; unless, as suggested before, from being considered as a lost sheep.
[UK] ‘No Meat Like Mutton’ Fanny Hill’s Bang-up Reciter 11: In London a man is sure – if he can sport the blunt, / To get a fresh supply each night of all sorts of — mutton! / Mutton! mutton! sweet sweet mutton / There’s no meat like mutton.
[UK] ‘Cat’s-Meat Nell’ Cockchafer 4: So, vhile I call’d out, ‘hot mutton cats,’ / Vhy Nell she bawl’d ‘cats’ pies!’.
[UK]Flash Mirror 11: What meat is the most popular in London? — Mutton, which is so plentiful, that is to be found on the pavement of every public street in the metropolis.
Man of Pleasure’s Illus. Pocket-book n.p.: FRENCH INTRODUCING HOUSES. [...] The neighbourhood of Leicester Square [...] Covent Garden; [...] Fitzroy Square — are localities were these importers of French mutton, lamb, and chicken set up their shambles.
[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc.
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
[Aus]Dead Bird (Sydney) 30 Aug. 2/1: the meat market. [...] Some dabblers in calves went a little above tho ankle, but we did not observe anybody knee-deep in them, and mutton is hooked up all over the city.
[US]R. Todasco Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Dirty Words.

(b) a woman.

[UK]Chapman & Jonson Eastward Ho! III ii: Tush, ’tis no fit sauce for such sweet mutton!
[UK]N. Field Woman is a Weathercock II i: wag: What say ye, Jack Sauce? page: O fie, ill-mutton! you are too angry.
[UK] in D’Urfey Pills to Purge Melancholy I 353: I’m a loyn of Mutton plainly dress’d.
[UK]‘Jon Bee’ Dict. of the Turf, the Ring, the Chase, etc.
[UK]Sam Sly 5 May 2/2: Taffy was a Welchman, / But Taffy was no glutton; / Taffy left his wife in bed, / The lodger seized the mutton.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 11 Sept. 4/7: If a lady should select you / We can fix the splicing soon / [...] / Come along and clutch a mutton / from out most superior stock.

(c) (also piece of mutton) the vagina; thus sexual intercourse, sexual pleasure.

[UK]Dekker Honest Whore Pt 1 V ii : Lamb! baa! am I Lamb? there you lye for I am Mutton. I had a fine iewell once, a very fine iewell and that naughty man stoale it away from me [...] twas calde a Maidenhead, and that naughty man had it.
[UK]Marston Dutch Curtezan V iii: I have a peece of mutton and a featherbed for you at all times.
[UK]Middleton No Wit or Help like a Womans (1657) I i: A chopping Gill with a plump Buttock, Will hoist a Fartingal at five years old, And call a man between eleven and twelve To take part of a piece of Mutton with her.
‘Peter Aretine’ Strange Newes 3: Peg. Here boys, here’s the best Pig’s head in the Fair [...] pure Mutton, and the best buttock bief in England .
[UK]RochesterWritten on the Chamber-Door of King Charles II’ in Works (1999) 293: Here lies the Mutton-eating King, / Whose Word no Man relies on .
[UK]Congreve Old Bachelor IV vi: You don’t love mutton, you Magdalen unconverted?
[UK]M. Pix Adventures in Madrid III i: A good Drubbing wou’d rather cure me from ever running at Mutton agen.
[UK]‘Peter Pindar’ ‘Liberty’s Last Squeak’ Works (1801) V 83: Feel for a sheep-stealer a little love; Whose fur-clad paws alike for mutton itch!
[UK] ‘Mutton Fresh’ Flash Chaunter 29: Mutton fresh, mutton fresh, still I cry, / Come and taste it off the thigh; / If you like Scotch fashion, you / Can have the hair upon it too, / For when my mutton is undress’d, / My customers like it best.
[UK] ‘Go For Go: or a Bit On The Sly’ Gentleman’s Spicey Songster 15: Then into her mutton, he went in a crack, / Any port in a storm, cried out sailor Jack.
[Aus]Satirist & Sporting Chron. (Sydney) 25 Feb. 1/1: The Head Master of the Sydney College [...] did get a slice of Mrs Llewellyn’s mutton some few evenings ago. This is putting his leg under her Mahogany with a vengeance.
[UK] ‘Paddy Miles & the Mermaid’ Rakish Rhymer (1917) 14: She was only a female just down to her belly, / And what should have been mutton was nothing but fish!
[UK] ‘Queen Bathsheba’ Pearl 2 Aug. 30: So while she was washing, and while he was peeping, / The King’s living sceptre grew stiff as a rod, / ‘Nice mutton!’ cried David.
[UK]Farmer & Henley Sl. and Its Analogues.
see sense 1d.

(d) (Aus.) a girlfriend.

[Aus]Stephens & O’Brien Materials for a Dict. of Aus. Sl. [unpub. ms.] 84: Women are commonly called mutton in Australia, connubial or sexual pleasures being called muttons.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 5 Aug. 47/1: She worked as a waitress, and kept ’erself well. [...] It was a fixed thing that she should be my mutton.

2. in self-referential senses.

(a) (US) one’s person, self, body or flesh.

[US]W. Dunlap Comic Sketch in Meserve & Reardon Satiric Comedies (1969) 110: Some may think I meant to save my mutton.
[US]J.K. Paulding Bucktails (1847) V ii: If my master misuses her, I’ll be into his mutton.
[UK]A. Mayhew Paved with Gold 72: If you eats a farden of it, you’re a lost mutton you are.
[US]J. O’Connor Wanderings of a Vagabond 323: None o’ the blaggards’ll come snakin’ round where Larry is. They’ve tasted his mutton too often for that.
[US]G. Devol Forty Years a Gambler 243: I could see he was sizing me up, and I knew he wanted some of my mutton.
[US](con. WWI) H. Odum Wings on My Feet 62: Sho’ got my britches patched an’ my mutton pulled for doin’ this meaness.

(b) (orig. US) one’s preference, one’s liking; usu. in pl.

[US]Minstrel Gags 6: ‘You’re my mutton,’ says he [HDAS].
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 22 Nov. 4/8: ‘E’s our mutton [...] Gimme ’Ancock [...] an’ we’ll get ther water through.
[Aus]E. Dyson ‘The Fickle Dolly Hopgood’ Benno and Some of the Push 69: ‘Yiv got ’im done in, Clinker!’ yelled the passionate Benno. ‘He’s your mutton.’.
[Aus]Baker N.Z. Sl. 54: When we speak of something being our muttons or a person’s muttons we mean that it is regarded with particular favour, that we like it especially well.
[Aus]N. Pulliam I Travelled a Lonely Land (1957) 236/1: muttons – ‘dish’, as ‘she’s just his muttons’.
[NZ]McGill Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 112/2: that’s our muttons just what we like, with reference to the excellence of our mutton.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. [as cit. 1988].

3. (later use is Aus./N.Z., also mutton tail) the penis.

[[UK] Machin & Markham Dumbe Knight II i: pre.: Indeed mistresse, if my master should breake his arrow with foule shooting or so, I would bee glad if mine might supply the whole [sic] [...] prat.: Go to sirra, I will not haue your kindness to intermeddle with her kinde, she is meate for your master. pre.: And your man sir, may licke your foule trencher. wife col.: I but not eate of his mutton].
[UK] ‘The Man Who Had Too Much Meat’ Cuckold’s Nest 22: People of all sorts thither flew [...] Poor little Joey’s mutton to view. [Ibid.] ‘They’re All Shooting’ 38: But the meat she likes the best is the butcher’s mutton tail.
[Aus]Dead Bird (Sydney) 1 Mar. 2/3: And on leaving heard her murmur in a solemn sort of sigh, / ‘I got so filled up with mutton that I hadn’t room for pie!’.
implied in unbutton one’s/the mutton
[NZ]McGill Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 74/2: mutton penis.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. [as cit. 1988].

4. (US) cowardice [the timorousness of sheep].

[US]P. Hamill Doc 121: I knew you had a streak of mutton in you, and I found it [HDAS].
[US]N.Y. Post 20 Dec. 39: Only people with a lot of mutton in them beat up midgets [HDAS].

In compounds

mutton dagger (n.)

the penis.

[Aus]B. Humphries Barry McKenzie [comic strip] in Complete Barry McKenzie (1988) 40: Fancy a bastard flashing the old mutton dagger in mixed company!
[UK]Roger’s Profanisaurus in Viz 87 Dec. n.p.: mutton musket euph. A smaller more portable field weapon than the lamb cannon. Also mutton bayonet, mutton dagger.
[UK]A. Sillitoe Birthday 114: Short of dragging this lovely girl [...] under the table and sliding the mutton dagger home.
mutton-faced (adj.)

fat-faced.

[UK]‘Jon Bee’ Dict. of the Turf, the Ring, the Chase, etc. 122: Mostly cooks, idle gourmands, &c. who delight in fat, soups, and slip-slops, evolve mutton-faced.
[Ire]Freeman’s Jrnl 10 Oct. 3/4: A mutton-faced young Esculapian showed his progress in chemistry.
[Ire]Freeman’s Jrnl 3 Jan. 3/2: A fat, mutton-faced boy, named Simon M’Gowan.
[UK]Bristol Mercury 24 Oct. 7/1: Mrs Lynch made us of very bad language, called him a ‘mutton-faced — ’.
[UK]Graphic (London) 10 June 19/3: A mutton-faced Cornish squire of restricted intelligence.
mutton hill (n.)

the female pudendum.

[UK]‘The Silver Nob’ in Randy Songster in Spedding & Watt (eds) I 190: On Mutton-hill appears each night, / The butcher to look for his silver bright.
mutton tail (n.)

see sense 3 above.

mutton-tugger (n.)

a degenerate; a pimp.

[UK]A. Wood Life of Anthony à Wood (1772) I 293: [of universities] The nurseries of wickedness, the nests of mutton tuggers, the dens of formall droanes.
mutton walk (n.)

1. the saloon at the Drury Lane Theatre, Covent Garden; often as the Mutton Walk.

[UK]‘An Amateur’ Real Life in London I 211: Mutton Walk — A flash term recently adopted to denominate the Saloon.
[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc.
[UK]Sl. Dict. 233: Mutton walk the saloon at Drury Lane Theatre. A vulgar appellation applied to this place early in the last century, still in use in the neighbourhood of Covent Garden, which was formerly the great resort of the gay and giddy of both sexes.

2. any street where one finds prostitutes, esp. the junction of Coventry Street and Windmill Street in the West End of London.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 771/1: ca. 1870.

In phrases

bit of mutton (n.) [SE bit + mutton n.]

1. a woman, esp. a prostitute.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 84/1: C.19–20 obs.

2. sexual intercourse; thus have a bit of mutton.

[UK]Farmer & Henley Sl. and Its Analogues.
[US]D. Lypchuk ‘A dirty little story’ in eye mag. 8 July [Internet]Then they enjoyed a bit of curly green, a bit of fish, a bit of giblet pie, a bit of mutton, a bit of sugar and he hit the kitten.

3. the vagina.

[UK]Farmer & Henley Sl. and Its Analogues.
cut at one’s mutton (n.)

of a man, an act of sexual intercourse.

[UK]‘The Marriage of Dumpling Bet’ in Fal-Lal Songster in Spedding & Watt (eds) Bawdy Songbooks (2011) III 22: Nightman Joe he bellowed outright, / ‘I shan’t have a cut at my mutton to-night’.
flog one’s/the mutton (v.) (also thump one’s/the mutton)

to masturbate.

[Aus]D. Ireland Glass Canoe (1982) 178: I think Meat’s been thumping the mutton.
[UK]McConville & Shearlaw Slanguage of Sex 78: flog the donkey Male masturbation. also flog the mutton.
fond of one’s mutton (adj.)

given to womanizing.

[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict. 184: In that class of English society which does not lay any claim to refinement, a fond lover is often spoken of as being ‘fond of his mutton’.
hawk one’s mutton (v.)

of either sex, to work as a prostitute.

[UK]F. Norman Guntz 57: A new law had been passed, prohibiting brasses from hawking their muttons in the streets.
[UK]F. Norman Dead Butler Caper 64: She’d been forced to give up hawking her mutton on the meat rack under the arches in Piccadilly Circus.
make mutton (out) of (v.)

to kill, to murder.

[UK](con. 1835–40) P. Herring Bold Bendigo 167: In Regency days I would have made mutton of him without compunction.
piece of mutton (n.)

1. a woman, seen as a sex object.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (1984) 879/1: C.17–early 19.

2. see sense 1c.

unbutton one’s/the mutton (v.)

(N.Z.) to urinate.

[Aus]B. Humphries Barry McKenzie [comic strip] in Complete Barry McKenzie (1988) 76: That bastard might be round at your dump unbuttoning his mutton.
[NZ]McGill Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 117/1: unbutton the mutton to urinate.
T. Cahill Pecked to Death by Ducks 190: As the only septic at the Sexchange, I had to ask directions to the snakes (rhymes with snake’s hiss) so I could unbutton the mutton and wring the rattlesnake.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. [as cit. 1988].

SE in slang uses

In compounds

dead mutton (n.)

something or someone no longer relevant or important.

[UK]Lancs. Eve. Post 13 Jan. 2/6: ‘Long will be very dead mutton ro-morrow night; only give him a stick.’ The ‘stick’ [...] was not to beat him with, but represents a mere 19 lines of type.
mutton-bird (n.)

see separate entry.

mutton-chopper (n.)

‘mutton-chop’ whiskers.

[UK] ‘’Arry in Switzerland’ in Punch 5 Dec. in P. Marks (2006) 98: Black Heton jackets, white aprons, and trim ‘mutton-chopper’ each side.
mutton-chops (n.) [the similarity of fleece to mutton-chop whiskers, and pun on SE mutton chops. Note milit. jargon the Mutton Chops or Mutton Lancers, the Royal West Surreys, whose emblem is a lamb and flag]

a sheep’s head.

[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
mutton dummies (n.) [ety. unknown; ? mutton cloth, a type of cloth used to wrap meat + dummy n.1 (1); i.e. their relative silence, compared to the noise of leather soled shoes]

(Ulster) plimsolls, trainers.

[Ire]Share Slanguage.
[UK]Observer Cash 28 Mar. 28: He describes the ‘mutton dummies’ in Belfast. ‘They were papier maché shoes for the kids to wear. If it was a fine day there wasn’t a problem.’.
mutton-fist (n.) (also leg of mutton fist, shoulder of mutton fist)

a large, coarse red hand, usu. in pl.

[UK]C. Cotton Virgil Travestie (1765) Bk I 14: Lifting his Mutton-fists to th’ Skies.
[UK]Bridges Burlesque Homer (3rd edn) 45: On your account his mutton fist / Once gave me a confounded twist.
[UK]Jack Randall’s Diary 41: The man [...] whose mutton fist Could have tipp’d e’en a young rampant bullock enough.
[UK]Morn. Post (London) 12 Jan. 2/1: The runner raised his leg of mutton fist, and gave him a trendous blow.
[UK]Kentish Gaz. 12 jan. 4/1: I hear the dun, or man of bil-ious look, / With mutton first against the portal knock it.
[UK]Hereford Jrnl 11 Apr. 4/1: Defendant put forth his ‘left’ hand — quite a mutton fist [...] and said it was still swollen.
[UK]Manchester Times 5 Mar. 3/4: We talk sometimes of a leg-of-mutton fist, of an adamantine hand. Abraham Lincoln has both.
[UK]Derby Mercury 18 Jan. 6/3: By the mutton fist of Tom cribb, you’re out-laws.
[UK]C. Hindley Life and Adventures of a Cheap Jack 190: When Jacob was in peril of the big fellow’s mutton-fist dropping him a hot ’un.
[UK]Western Times 23 June 4/4: I shook [...] his leg-of-mutton fist.
[UK]Sheffield Dly Teleg. 28 Sept. 2/4: He would run at me like a battering ram in the playground, and he had a shoulder of mutton fist.
[Aus]‘Rolf Boldrewood’ Colonial Reformer III 165: Homminey [...] came over and squeezed my hand in his great mutton fist.
[UK]Huddersfield Chron. 15 Dec. 14/1: When a dance was announced both had every variety of arm offered, from the muscular with the shoulder of mutton fist, right down to the genteel cow tail.
[UK]Coventry Eve. Teleg. 13 Oct. 1/6: His great leg of mutton fist descended on the hand [and] the grasp of the huge fist tightened.
mutton-head/-headed

see separate entries.

mutton-holder (n.)

(Aus.) a candlestick.

[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 13 Oct. 3/4: That gentleman could not prove that Miss Donnelly did not discharge the first missile, to wit, a candlestick, the identical ‘mutton holder’ complained of.
mutton-monger (n.)

see separate entries.

muttonpuncher (n.) [play on SAmE cowpuncher]

(US, mainly Western/N.Z.) a sheep-herder.

[US]D. McCarthy Lang. Mosshorn n.p.: Mutton Puncher. . . A humorous term used to describe a sheepherder [HDAS].
[US]I. Doig Eng. Creek 29: I suppose that runs against the usual notion of the West, of cow chousers and mutton conductors forever at odds with each other. [...] You could go into a bar and still find an occasional old hammerhead who proclaimed himself nothing but a cowboy and never capable of drawing breath as anything else, especially not as a mutton puncher.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 139: mutton puncher A shepherd.

In phrases

dead as mutton (adj.) (also cold as mutton)

completely dead, certainly dead; of a place, quiet, deserted.

[Ire] ‘De Night before Larry was Stretch’d’ Irish Songster 5: Oghone! it’s all over said he, / For de neck cloth I’ll be forc’d to put on, / And by dis time tomorrow you’ll see, / Your poor Larry as dead as mutton.
[UK]J. Poole Hamlet Travestie III ii: He is knock’d o’ the head, And than mutton more dead.
[UK] ‘Love in the City’ in Bentley’s Misc. Aug. 130: Sir, you’re dead as mutton; The Captain’s come. Your life’s not worth a button.
[UK]T. Hood ‘Confessions of a Phoenix’ Works (1862) VI 234: What! as dead as a house – as a herring – as a door-nail – as dumps – as ditch-water – as mutton.
[Aus]Central Qld Herald (Rocmukhampton, Qld) 27 Dec. 27/4: He’s in there dead as mutton.
[US]Democratic Banner (Bowling Green, MO) 16 Sept. 1/1: Without hope, happiness were as dead as mutton.
Louth & N. Lincs Advertiser 12 Apr. 3/5: To the greatest Captain, shot! / Nought to him that, dead as mutton, / Is, when gone and soon forgot.
[UK] ‘Mister Simpkins’ in Laughing Songster 116: My lamb’s as dead as mutton, for she does not say a word.
Dly Bull. (Honolulu) 1 Sept. 2/2: he dealt the child such a terrible blow in the face that he laid him out as dead as mutton.
[Aus]‘Banjo’ Paterson ‘Johnson’s Antidote’ in Man from Snowy River (1902) 147: Stumpy was as dead as mutton, t’other dog was live and well.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 26 May 8/3: Most of his musical jokes fell as dead as frozen mutton.
[US]S.F. Call 2 Jan. 41/2: The Roosevelt policies are dead as mutton.
[US]Wash. Times (DC) 5 June 25/2: The night life of London is dead, dead as mutton.
[UK]M. Marshall Tramp-Royal on the Toby 282: Although neat and clean-swept, it was dead – dead as mutton.
[US]W.R. Burnett High Sierra in Four Novels (1984) 389: There he was, lying cold [...] Cold as mutton.
[UK]J. Braine Room at the Top (1959) 110: Dufton’s awful. It stinks. Literally. It’s dead as mutton.
[UK]E. North Nobody Stops Me 184: ‘Snor Rider?’ I said. ‘Dead as yesterday’s mutton,’ Fred said.
[UK](con. 1940s) O. Manning Danger Tree 158: Dead as mutton, poor bloke.
mutton dressed as lamb (n.) (also mutton done up as lamb, ...dressed up like lamb, old ewe dressed as lamb, old ewe dressed lamb fashion, sheep masquerading...)

1. a woman who dresses younger than her years.

[UK]Grose Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue n.p.: Ewe, [...] an old ewe drest lamb fashion, an old woman, drest like a girl.
[UK]Lex. Balatronicum.
[UK]W. Perry London Guide 138: Old harridans who are up to the ways of life, after a dozen disappointments, dress out lamb fashion, wear false curls and paint a little [...] subtract eight or ten years fro their age.
[UK]Egan Grose’s Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK]Navy at Home II 131: The new peruke — just such another as we sometimes see old women wear at parties, where they go ‘dressed up lamb fashion,’ being, unhappily, nor more nor less than old ewes.
[UK]R.S. Surtees Hillingdon Hall I 116: Her bonnet was white chip, with an amber-coloured feather [...] ‘Mutton, dressed lamb fashion,’ as Mr. Jorrocks observed.
[US]Matsell Vocabulum 30: An old ewe dressed lamb fashion.
[UK]G.F. Northall Warwickshire Word-Book 276: Dress’d up like an old yowe (ewe) lamb fashion.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 8 Dec. 16/1: (cartoon caption) Miss Passy (old mutton dressed as lamb): ‘They say the paw-paw is a wonderful tree. It you hang up meat near it, the meat will become tender.’ / Miss Young: ‘How nice it would be to have one where you could sit in the shade of it, dear.’.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 12 Dec. 27/4: It’s an era that’s bogus and sham; / One may frequently meet on a tram, / With a sweet ingénue / Of about forty-two – / She is sheep masquerading as lamb.
[UK]Mayo & David [perf. Marie Lloyd] I can’t forget the days when I was young [lyrics] And there’s many a bit of frozen mutton tastes as good as lamb.
[Ire]Joyce Ulysses 517: Mutton dressed as lamb. Long in the tooth and superfluous hair.
[UK]R. Cook Crust on its Uppers 65: Mrs Byrd [...] is regarded in the trade as little more than African mutton dressed up as Canterbury lamb.
[Aus]F.J. Hardy Yarns of Billy Borker 26: Not like these bags here in Woolloomooloo who are either too fat or too thin, too tall or too short. And mutton done up as lamb.
[US]Maledicta III:2 222: An old queen who goes on the prowl (UK trolling) in ‘her’ finery is mutton dressed as lamb.
[UK]P. Bailey Eng. Madam 144: You are definitely not mutton dressed up to look like lamb.
[UK](con. 1918) P. Barker Eye in the Door 93: ‘Oh, and he doesn’t like false teeth [...] Mrs Thorpe’s got them, you know.’ ‘Mutton dressed as lamb,’ he says.
[UK]B. Hare Urban Grimshaw 224: Stella was thirty-nine and had green hair [...] The phrase ‘mutton dressed as lamb’ sprang to mind.
A. Shulman in Guardian 29 Oct. [Internet] Any higher [heels] and I think I look ludicrous: towering platforms on me have the whiff of a mutton alert, even if they have fashion kudos.

2. attrib. use of sense 1.

[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 24 June 17/3: The sweet youing thing in the mutton-dine-up-as-lamb regalia minces down the step.