E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
A character in French pantomime representing a man in growth and a child in mind and manners. He is generally the tallest and thinnest man that can be got, has his face and hair covered with white powder or flour, and wears a white gown with very long sleeves, and a row of big buttons down the front. The word means Little Peter.