Merry Andrew Meaning

(idiomatic) A person who clowns publicly; a buffoon; an entertainer's assistant.

Example: 1749, Henry Fielding, Tom Jones, Folio Society 1973, p. 438:
  Instead, therefore, of answering my landlady, the puppet-show man ran out to punish his Merry-Andrew [...]
1873, William Lucas Collins, Plautus and Terence, chapter III, page 31.
  The games of the circus—the wild-beast fight and the gladiators, the rope-dancers, the merry-andrews, and the posture-masters,—were more to their taste than clever intrigue and brilliant dialogue.
1974, Lawrence Durrell, Monsieur, Faber & Faber 1992, p. 155:
  One of them, the eldest, was a sort of merry andrew and was not above dressing the part with a weird cap of jackal's skin with many hanging tails and tassels.