E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Man in the Moon (The).
Some say it is a man leaning on a fork, on which he is carrying a bundle of sticks picked up on a Sunday. The origin of this fable is from Num. xv. 3236. Some add a dog also; thus the prologue in Midsummer Nights Dream says, This man with lantern, dog, and bush of thorns, presenteth moonshine; Chaucer says he stole the bush (Test. of Cresseide). Another tradition says that the man is Cain, with his dog and thornbush; the thorn-bush being emblematical of the thorns and briars of the fall, and the dog being the foul fiend. Some poets make out the man to be Endymion, taken to the moon by Diana.
Man in the moon. The nameless person at one time employed in elections to negotiate bribes. Thus the rumour was set flying among the electors that the Man in the Moon had arrived.
I know no more about it than the man in the moon. I know nothing at all about the matter.