f. COKES n. According to Johnson 1755-73, ‘a low word’, and probably in vulgar use long before it became usual in literature, which may account for want of literary evidence for the early history of the senses. The original meaning seems to have been ‘make a cokes of’: cf. to fool, to pet, to gull; and the transition from ‘make a fool of’ to ‘make a pet of’, is paralleled by the passage of fond from ‘befooled’ to its present sense.
Thursday, 19 August 2010
Once upon a time there was cokes meaning "A silly fellow, fool, ninny; a simpleton, one easily ‘taken in’", possibly related to cockney. The phrase make a cokes of appeared to be shorted to cokes, later spelled coax. The OED: