Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Episode 69: Six Nines Transcript

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Shauna Harrison:              00:00                     Welcome to Bunny Trails, a whimsical adventure of idioms and other turns of phrase. I'm Shauna Harrison.
Dan Pugh:                           00:05                     And I'm Dan Pugh. Each week we delve into the origin and history of an idiom or other turn of phrase and discuss how it's been used over time. This week is our 69th episode.
Shauna Harrison:              00:16                     Nice.
Dan Pugh:                           00:16                     So we're going to talk about six different phrases with the word nine in them. First up, have you ever heard the phrase dressed to the nines?
Shauna Harrison:              00:23                     I have heard this one.
Dan Pugh:                           00:25                     All right. Dress to the nines is actually a relatively recent occurrence. Uh, the first time we see the phrase dressed to the nines in print is in 1837 but it actually comes from a much earlier phrase. First I want to talk about some of the things that are not true about this phrase, but I hate, I hate when like podcasts do this kind of stuff and then they pitch it like it's real, but at the end they're like, it's not real.
Dan Pugh:                           00:52                     And I, and I know we've done that before too, and I listen to those episodes and I cringe because I'm like, no, don't like people are listening to learn. You can't fake them out like that. So there are many options online that claim how dressed to the nines came about. Some claimed it had to do with a mishearing of dress to the eyes or maybe even a miss printing of dress to the eyes.
Shauna Harrison:              01:13                     Like your eyeballs. Yeah. Your head,
Dan Pugh:                           01:15                     right. Yes. With the whole, the concept of like I seen thing and so yeah. That's kind of an interesting concept really though. Yes. But it's not true. Some claim it has to do with the nine yards of fabric supposedly needed to make a certain kind of suit. So not at all true. Also, probably not the origins of whole nine yards, but that's something we'll do at another time.
Dan Pugh:                           01:37                     That's a whole other ball of wax or a whole other nine yards.
Shauna Harrison:              01:41                     Nine yards is a lot of fabric guys. Yeah. If you've never tried to make anything that'd be quite the suit.
Dan Pugh:                           01:47                     Uh, others claim it has to do with the concept of a specific British regiment in the 18 hundreds who were said to be very well dressed. This one's actually a very persistent one, but no,
Shauna Harrison:              01:58                     it's really appealing because you think about like the ninth regiment or something.
Dan Pugh:                           02:01                     but yes, very clever. Sure. If somebody who's very creative,
Dan Pugh:                           02:08                     Oh yeah, no, well, things on the internet often are, that's why they're so people need them so much, but the truth is likely not. Any of these. Instead we're going to turn to the most likely source, the predecessor phrase to the nines or up to the nines. Okay. Not only is this the most likely origin from our research, the research that I did on this episode, but it's also where the OED thinks it comes from and I really want to have my ducks in a row so to speak, before I tell the Oxford English dictionary that their researchers are wrong about the origin of a thing.
Dan Pugh:                           02:38                     They've got some experiences just a little bit. So, and they don't make a massive claim, but they do put dress to the nines as part of up to the nines or to the nines as that. That entry to the nines means to perfection. Uh Oh wait, I should, I should say dressed to the nines means dressed really nicely. Like as, as you can, I don't know how I forgot that. It's like this isn't almost 70 episodes in somehow dressed to the nines specifically according to the Oxford English dictionary is dressed very elaborately or smartly. And then up to the nines means according to the Oxford English dictionary to perfection to the highest degree or point. And in later use, it was chiefly used as dressed to the nines. So their assertion is that we went from to the nines or up to the nines and then that transition to dress to the nines. So it was a phrase that meant perfection in some ways and then was dwindled down a bit to mean just perfection in the way you dress.
Shauna Harrison:              03:38                     Gotcha. So we'll say too that, um, smartly, if you're dressed smartly, that that's kind of the, not necessarily trendy but fashionable, very clean and well dressed. So it, that one's kind of a little pocket terms smartly is.
Dan Pugh:                           03:52                     So the first time we see to the nines in print was in the 1700, somewhere around 1719. And this was in the familiar epistles written by Alan Ramsey and William Hamilton. And these were their back and forth conversations. And in one of these Hamilton said how to the nines did they content me? And that's the first time we saw it in print, but we know it was likely used before that because it was a phrase that they used there that was not questioned in any way, shape or form. We see it again in 1787 and the independent Gazzeteer *Shauna and Dan trying to figure out how to pronounce this word*. So the independent Gazette, but like a person who was gazetted as a tier Gazeteer, I have no idea how to say that word actually, now that I think about it,
Shauna Harrison:              04:41                     I feel like it's still have to be Gazette. Right. You've got to like get the emphasis Gazeteer,
Dan Pugh:                           04:46                     sure. Like Mouseketeer or Rocketeer, right. Gazeteer all right. We do a word podcast.
Shauna Harrison:              04:55                     What do you need help? I need an adult
Dan Pugh:                           04:58                     So 1787 out of Philadelphia, this is the March 24th edition. Last Saturday, one of those notorious villains dressed in his lace cloths and patterned to the nines went onboard of a brig. Bound for Caliias. That's very interesting. Another example from this, because we are doing six phrases that have the word nines in them, so I don't want to spend like the whole episode on, on to the nines here, but in the Herald out of New York, and this was the uh, March 11th edition, 1837, one evening, a smart young mechanic dressed to the nines as Ben Bolen says, might've been seen wending his way along Broadway. So this was my example when I said the first time that we saw it was in 1837, this was it. And they did have dressed to the nines in quotations. So it may not have been the, it may not have been a well known phrase. People would have known to the nines, but dressed to the nines might have been slightly different.
Shauna Harrison:              05:54                     Combination was new probably. Right, right.
Dan Pugh:                           05:56                     And only did they
Shauna Harrison:              05:58                     put it in quotations or it's not quotation, it's just a single, um, it's like the apostrophe thing. If it's on either side, Oh my goodness. I feel like, okay, maybe I just feel like somehow I failed all of my English classes in this one shot.
New Speaker:                    06:13                     Now that you say this I feel like, I don't know. Oh my goodness.
Dan Pugh:                           06:16                     Well, they also attribute it to a person specifically and say as a person says, so Ben Bowline so or Bowline I don't know. I don't, there's a lot of things I don't seem to know today.
New Speaker:                    06:26                     Oh no, we're in trouble. Okay. But can I, I'm just, I know we don't like to do this, but I'm going to step backwards to your 1787. Can I say we still love villains who are like dressed all fancily and stuff.
Dan Pugh:                           06:39                     Maybe if you go to a melodrama, but what, give me, give me any other recent example. That's not a melodrama.
Shauna Harrison:              06:46                     Disney, Jafar?
Dan Pugh:                           06:48                     Nope. Hang on by by definition, I would say that those are primarily melodrama.
Shauna Harrison:              06:53                     Oh, come on. Okay, fine. any marvel movie. Marvel. C'mon. Um, what's her name? The at the end. Ragnarok. You know, total villain love. Yeah.
Dan Pugh:                           07:05                     Yeah. She was well dressed, but then there's dr. Strange who's equally well dressed. That's true. I'm not saying we don't like good, well dressed. Good guys. I'm just saying that you'd like villains, you know, being dressed as sharply Dracula. Come on. It's like a long standing thing.
Dan Pugh:                           07:19                     Okay, Dracula pretty much a melodrama, but I will acquiesce to your point about the Marvel movies. All right. I'm going to move forward in time if you don't mind. Is there any other backwards in time you would like to do? Maybe to go back into, I don't know, the 1400s
Shauna Harrison:              07:36                     I bet that there were some pretty well dressed villains then too.
Dan Pugh:                           07:42                     All right. In the hand of Ethel Berta and 1876 Hardy says when she's dressed up to the nines for some grand party talking about this, talking about this lady that he sees that likes to go out and party. She's kind of a, there was a word I was going to use for this that has escaped me. That ends an EIT. Socialeit. Thank you. That's it. Yes. But we also see that still, even today. So, so this, this kind of a concept in the, uh, career out of Dundee. This was 2001 the 27 July edition dressed to the nines in a morning suit and top hat. He was hired by the tourist office to distribute leaflets. So we still, we still continue to use that, that phrase, you know, in the modern era,
Shauna Harrison:              08:22                     I would think so. I always think of like F Scott Fitzgerald. Like that's what I imagined. Dressed to the nines, you know, Gatsby style. Yeah. Like just really not quite. Yeah. I actually, there was a recent, like just a couple of nights ago, a bunch of my friends in the area went to this inspire ball, which is a non nonprofit organizations fundraiser for the year.
Dan Pugh:                           08:47                     And is there anything in green lights? No. Okay. I don't know. It was a Holden Caulfield thing. What does this have to do with great Gatsby?
Shauna Harrison:              08:55                     No, no, no, no, no. But that was like the total over the Lake. Very much formal dress to the nines, but like absolute formal wear. And so, you know, people are in like sequined suits and it just awesome. I love it. It's not a thing that happens in the middle of Kansas very often. So like military balls and
Dan Pugh:                           09:12                     I think it happens far more far more frequently than you might. Yeah.
Shauna Harrison:              09:15                     Yeah. I'm not a part of that, uh, that world. So
Dan Pugh:                           09:20                     next up is by the nine and by the nine is a phrase that would be said about, um, well, I bet a, a variety of different things, but by the nine would be almost like an annex climatory statement. Like, Oh my goodness. Or by the nine, like an interjection. Yes, exactly. Like an interjection. Yes. So this interjection or exclamatory statement comes, um, how has this origins in a variety of different ways, and there are many different origin stories for this and they all come from mythology in different parts of the world. Okay. So the first I'll talk about is the nine muses. And this is, um, something that we see in, uh, in classic mythology. And I'll just talk about we see this as early as the 14 hundreds in, in English or English predecessors, but I'll just give one example from 1635. And Francis corals emblems, Tis not the sacred wealth of all the nine can buy my heart from him. So in this case, it's of all the nine meaning like, Oh, this large group of people, not so much an interjection in this case, but we see it used as interjections. We also see it used here in this type of a thing where it's by, by the nine got the wealth of all the nine as a point that have been moved into moving into a realm of perfection.
Shauna Harrison:              10:39                     That's kind of cool. Also nine is a perfect square. So three times three is nine. That's cool. Yeah, I like numbers. There's a whole bunch of numbers stuff he could do with nine, but it probably would not be as interesting to everyone. It's to me, I love it. Okay, so nine times nine is 81 and eight plus one is nine, which is cool, right? You could just keep going and I'm just saying like you can do all kinds of cool stuff with the number nine.
Dan Pugh:                           11:07                     why was six afraid of seven.
Shauna Harrison:              11:08                     Why?
Dan Pugh:                           11:09                     Because seven, eight, nine.
Shauna Harrison:              11:10                     I've heard that. Yes.
Dan Pugh:                           11:13                     Why did seven eight, nine because he heard you needed three square meals a day.
Shauna Harrison:              11:18                     Oh gosh. That was terrible. And also perfect.
Shauna Harrison:              11:23                     Hey dad jokes in my thing. All right. So one other example of this, uh, talking about the nine from the muse perspectives and Rudyard Kipling's for, it was from Rudyard Kipling in narco. He wrote in the times February 23rd, 1933. He called the obedient Nine to aid The varied chase. And Clio kissed. So when he was an example from, uh, Joe James, Joyce and Ulysses, 1922 plaster figures, also naked representing the new nine muses, commerce, operatic, armor publicity manufacturer, Liberty of speech, plural voting, astronomy, private hygiene, seaside concert entertainments, painless obstetrics and astronomy for the people. I love that because these are supposed to be the new nine muses. So the, you know, there, there are a variety of, of muses in the past. So in 1884, uh, in Dorothy Forester, it has been held that from Venus are born, the nine muses who are in fact poetry, music, dancing, acting, gallantry, courtesy, politeness, courtship, and intrigue and not Talia and her sisters at all. Unless they can be proved to have those attributes.
Shauna Harrison:              12:34                     Yeah. See, that's like classic art right there. I'm going to tell ya that painless obstetrics is a pretty decent thing too, you know? Yeah. Let's keep that around.
Dan Pugh:                           12:42                     I would not know, but I will take your word for it.
Shauna Harrison:              12:46                     I mean, yeah. Whew.
Dan Pugh:                           12:48                     And then there's also an entry about the nine worthies. So these are nine famous men drawn as exemplaries from biblical, classical, and medieval history. And legend in Scottish, it was called the nine Nobles. Uh, and this number is supposedly according to the Oxford English dictionary composed of three Jews, Joshua, David, and Judas. Not Iscariot, but, uh, Maccabeus three pagans, Hector Alexander and Julius Caesar, and three Christians, Arthur, Charlemange and Godfrey of Bullion.
Shauna Harrison:              13:20                     Oh, that's cool. Yeah. There's another important nine that you haven't mentioned. Yeah, yeah. I'm like, Lord of the rings. Oh, right. Yeah. I mean like they saved the whole world.
Dan Pugh:                           13:32                     Yes. I think that Tolkien was going for allusion. I'm just saying that group to be an allusions in itself.
Shauna Harrison:              13:40                     You know, he did what these other people didn't and he made it cannon. So I'm just saying,
Dan Pugh:                           13:46                     fair enough. I like by the nines or of the nines because it, it reminds me a lot of, one of my favorite elder scrolls games, which is Skyrim. And in there, there are nine divines. This is of course, an allusion to the nine muses in this groups. Um, and you can hear the NPCs saying things like by the nine, uh, you know, by, you know, as a, as a point of reverence or as a point of exclamation. So it's very, it's very entertaining.
Shauna Harrison:              14:15                     I feel like that's when you could just walk around and use that introduction by the nine and people would not be sure because I like hadn't really heard it. I think I've read it and stuff, but didn't really make the connection.
Dan Pugh:                           14:26                     Sure. So next up is nine days. Wonder, this is the phrase I'd never heard before, but nine days or also nine nights and then specifically oftentimes used with the, with nine days wonder nine nights, wonder, uh, is the brief time for which a novelty is supposed to attract attention.
Shauna Harrison:              14:43                     Ah Hmm. I'm in marketing and I have not heard this
Dan Pugh:                           14:46                     well. And it's a, it's a, it's a more rare thing to hear these days. Uh, but we use things like 15 minutes of fame. Andy Warhol kind of coined that, but this would be like a predecessor to that nine days. Wonder. And if you imagine the speed with which in Warhols time the world was moving compared to the speed with which nine days, wonder would have been moving where we first saw the test in the 13 hundreds there is a drastic nine days wonder might be the original 15 minutes of fame. Awesome. So as I mentioned, we first saw this in the 13 hundreds. I'm going to use an example from the late 13 hundreds in a one that we've used numerous times in Chaucer's Troilus and Chryssiad a wonder lasts but nine nights never in town. We see it continue in many other examples like in Heyward's province of the English tongue and the fifth in 1546, this wonder lasted nine days in Lilly's Ephesus, the greatest wonder lasteth but nine days.
Dan Pugh:                           15:43                     So we see this used over and over again and I think the popularity of it probably really hit and it had been used it, a lot of people saw it, but I think it probably spread in popularity with Chaucer. And then, uh, again, with even growing more with Shakespeare, who in as you like it said, I was seven of the nine days out of wonder before you came. So we definitely see this nine days wonder used throughout. Uh, and it stayed popular until probably like the late 18 hundreds. Um, I do want to use a bonus thing here. Uh, in the 1811 dictionary, vulgar tongue, I saw that there was a definition called Kemp's Morris and William Kemp said to have been the original dogberry in much ado about nothing. Danced a Morris from London to Norwich in nine days of which he printed the account.
Dan Pugh:                           16:33                     Kemp's nine days of wonder, huh? Right. It is a whole lot of stuff. So you've got this camp and they've danced a Morris was a type of dance at the time. Dance a morris wasn't a phrase. They were literally saying they danced. The morris dance from there. Uh, and so they, but they had a phrase from this phrase, which is Kemp's Morris, uh, which came from, uh, the printed account Kemps, nine days of wonder, which was very interesting. Two last ones from here in 1897 and Bram Stoker's Dracula, they said as the matter is to be a nine days wonder, they are evidently determined that there shall be no cause of after complaint. The January 9th, 1912 edition of the day book out of Chicago, Illinois, captain Adams side winds declared the referee and Ms. Virginia Lee is the champion speller of Bradford. The announcement was nine days wonder, but the announcement of the Lee Porter engagement three months later was a 90 and nine days wonder and I love that because it takes that natural seven in 70 days, nine and 90 days and and you know, adds to that to show the, the improvement in how, yes it was a nine days wonder in this case, but then something better came along and so they use the 99 and nine or 90 and nine
Shauna Harrison:              17:50                     yeah, that's good. Today's show is sponsored by our patrons. According to the Oxford English dictionary since the 13 hundreds the word patron has meant a person standing in a role of oversight, protection, or sponsorship to another patron comes from the Latin word for father atier, then becoming Patronus, meaning champion or protector, then to patron, meaning one who sponsors something like a patron of the arts. Leonardo DaVinci was able to make his art thanks to patrons like Medici and Cesare Borgia bunny trails is able to continue thanks to our awesome patrons including Pat Rowe and Mary Lopez. If you want to become a patron of Bunny trails and get cool perks like early access to episodes behind the scenes content, monthly, mini episodes and more, you can visit us at or you can find links to it at
Dan Pugh:                           18:47                     next up, we have nine ways or also nine ways at once, and that means according to the Oxford English dictionary, a squint or askew in all directions. So this is, this is rare now, but it's something that we, we used to see starting in the 15 hundreds and we saw this in Erasmus’ Apophthegmes. Squinted he was and looked nine ways.
Shauna Harrison:              19:08                     This is my favorite thing, right now Squint, and askew.
Dan Pugh:                           19:13                     squint and askew Yes. So it was basically looking all uh, cockamamie, you know, I mean if you are looking at different, different, different ways, what can I not say that word? Is that word bad?
Shauna Harrison:              19:25                     It's like, I don't think it's a word that is it. Well, people know what that means.
Dan Pugh:                           19:29                     I don't know. I hope so. It has nothing to do with the number of our episode. I trust. Trust me on that. So we see it in Richard the second passion fly, squinting, and as we say, nine ways a thrice. So in this case instead of nine ways at once it was nine ways of thrice. We also see it in Don Quixote. I see you bounce your head full butt against the stones and made them fly nine ways at once.
Shauna Harrison:              19:50                     Yeah.
Dan Pugh:                           19:51                     Also in the, I want to use a another much like we did earlier, a example from the 1811 book of vulgar tongues by Francis grosse squint-a-pipes a squinty man or woman said to be born in the middle of the week and looking both ways for Sunday or born in a Hackney coach and looking out both windows fit for a cook, one eye in the pot and the other up the chimney looking nine ways at once. So this one now is talking to someone specifically who's kind of like, my eyes do, don't always look at the same way at the same time. And uh, in this case they're making fun of someone's appearance. Now this is of course, this is why it's in the dictionary of vulgar tounges. Cause it's not very nice in a newspaper, in a dictionary wouldn't have printed this, but squint-a-pipes was the word they used and they used nine ways at once to help, right? It's, you know, the languages weird. We also see in the 1847, uh, April edition of the North American review, an uncommon operation, she performed upon the chairman of one of the committees that of making him look nine ways at once a compound strabismus of singular pathological interest we can barely allude to. Wow. And they did barely.
Shauna Harrison:              21:05                     Okay, so come on people.
Dan Pugh:                           21:09                     And in this case w- the, the concept is that um, that basically this person, whoever she was, uh, basically made the chairman so confused that they were askew in and, and just confused all over. Like I had no idea what was going on. Now running nine ways at once. Uh, last I want to use is, is a more recent version. This is from 1993. It's a Hayden Carruth poem The Child published in the 1993 work Collected Longer Poems Otherwise considered being is a force More or less well directed Cometh the child exploded running nine ways at once an egg dropped a cup spilled a universe erupting hell on wheels.
Shauna Harrison:              21:56                     I like it. That's fun. I've heard like nine ways to Sunday or something. Is that okay?
Dan Pugh:                           22:02                     Yeah. That's also comes from the same, the same root. Gotcha. Cool. Yeah. Nine ways. Nine ways to Sunday is, is, is one that I had heard and that was what I was looking for when I found, I found this one cool. There's also nine times out of 10, which is, uh, a very common thing. It means that the great majority of times, uh, in, when it is being used in its figurative sense, uh, of course in its literal sense, it means nine out of 10 times, but it is oftentimes used now figuratively just to say a majority of the time, or in almost all the cases, and we see this today all like, you can't see a dentist commercial or toothpaste commercial or something without nine out of 10 dentists, you know, or whatever.
Shauna Harrison:              22:43                     I hear people say it all the time too. Nine times out of ten.
Dan Pugh:                           22:45                     Yeah. Nine times out of 10, right. It doesn't actually mean 90% of the times or, or you did it 10 times and nine of those times. Right. It does not mean that it means nine w- and it's a lot like the word decimate, which means attempt to destroy, attempt. So decimate. Now we mean like completely to destroy, right? It means to destroy a 10th of something. So it doesn't, it doesn't exactly work now, but nine times out of 10 is, is much the same.
Shauna Harrison:              23:13                     Yeah. I could see if you, if you destroyed a 10th of your house, you know, like that, it feel pretty ruined. So that's why the decimated, I think. Yeah,
Dan Pugh:                           23:22                     sure. And there's, and there's a, there's a line in world war Z that talks about that for Brooks I think is who wrote that. And this is not a, this is not a notes that I wrote. So, uh, but you brought it up and there's, there's a point in which they, they highlight that, that one of the Army's was uncomfortable doing something that they'd been asked and they were, were decimated. And, and the writer points out that this, you know, most people think decimated is this, but I'm using the literal word. They came in and killed a 10th of our people in front of us. And that was the, and they were making a point. And so, you know, in that kind of a thing, yeah, attempt can be incredibly devastating. So I get where the concept of a 10th of something being destroyed as decimate could turn into so much destruction or total destruction much in the way nine times out of 10 has done when we mean a great majority, cause it does mean a majority, 90% is a majority.
Dan Pugh:                           24:19                     But, uh, now we don't really mean 90% when we say that we mean most of the time or almost all the time. The first time we saw this in print was in 1648, uh, by Henry Parker in of free trade in my Lord Cooke's opinion, nine parts of 10 of all of our English staple commodities are such as we shear from the sheep's back. So in this case, he's not actually using, he's not saying it's actually nine parts of the 10, but like the most of the time. And we see that throughout the 16 hundreds and 17 hundreds. There are lots of examples of it. Like in, in 1987 in, uh, Kaczynski's Northern witchcraft. When humans contract the disease, nine times out of 10, it is from an infected rabbit or Hare. All right, so let's wrap this up. We've got one more big one I want to talk about and that's nine lives.
Dan Pugh:                           25:10                     Okay. So nine lives is the number of lives proverbially allotted to a cat, right? So I think most people have heard of nine lives in this, in this thing. Uh, and, and we see that, uh, the first time we see it, atested in print is in a dialogue of Proverbs and the English tongue by Heywood. And, and in this case they're saying it's already a thing that's been said. That's how it ended up in Proverbs. Right? A woman, hath nine lives like a cat. So, and there was a lot, I did see a lot of, of women have nine lives. Things are women, have 10 lives or whatever in here. Uh, I'm not quite sure what all of that allusion was to what I, what I found, uh, made me believe that they intended that. Um, much like the old style of humor where a married couple, a man would put down the wife, you know, like till death do us part was a goal, not a, not a promise, you know, kind of thing.
Dan Pugh:                           26:07                     That kind of really crappy humor. Um, I a lot of that, that's a, that's got an old that's got a old history, which is probably why it persists so much. Oh, we also see it in beware cat by William Baldwin. This is 1563. I really liked this one because it takes a different turn on it. And in this case, uh, he's talking, I don't want to say I don't like the concept of like killing people, but he's talking about killing witches. Right. And there've hath come, the proverb as true as common that a cat have nine lives. That is to say, a witch may take on a cat's body nine times in this. He's making the case that if you kill the cat, which, which is a witch, so the, which has taken the form of the cat and if you kill the cat while the, witch has taken its form, the, witch can still take the form of a cat eight more times, so you're not killing the, which when you do that, stop doing that. Well, I don't think he's saying stop doing that. Keep doing it. Probably do more. Right. Yeah, that's, that's crazy to me. I of course, do not at all condone the killing of uh, witches or cats for that matter.
Shauna Harrison:              27:18                     Yeah, not really my thing here. Um, cats are like the familiar, common familiar for witches to consider it to be. Yeah. So that's kind of probably that connection
Dan Pugh:                           27:29                     we did. We have talked about that in an earlier episode. That's where that connection likely comes from. Also saw it and Romeo and Juliet. I think a lot of people would have heard about it. There where Tybalt says “ What wouldst though have of me” Mercutio replies “Nothing King of Cats, but borrow one of your nine lives” I like this one from a William Kings, the toast and heroic poem in four books. They must pronounce it differently cause it's an and then heroic. This is from 1747 but the hero, well, judging that masculine wives often rise from the dead and light. Cats have nine lives. I know. All right. I'm going to read another definition from a 1811s dictionary of vulgar tongues. And this one is for cat's foot. They have two definitions. I'm going to read the second one. As many lives as a cat, cats according to vulgar, naturalists have nine lives. That is one less than a woman. No more chance than a cat in hell without clause set of one who enters into a dispute or quarrel with one greatly above his match. Oh my goodness. old Timey people are weird. I'm sure they'll say that about us too though. That's funny. Yeah, they probably will. There is a, a couple of other examples. Um, 1879 Scribner's monthly. This was the April edition. The cat after a long fast was taken out with three of his nine lives apparently intact. And then one last, uh, one last point from a Frank bomb in marvelous land of oz, 1904, I had the good fortune to save the ninth life of a Tailor Tailor's having like cats nine lives.
Shauna Harrison:              29:08                     Nice. Thank you. Thank you sir. Gross for all of your material for today's episode,
Dan Pugh:                           29:13                     right. Well I'm sure you noticed that we didn't mention a one, but it seems obvious and I alluded to it early on, the whole nine yards. This one deserves its own episode because to quote Yale university library and Fred Shapiro, it is the, this is this quote, the most prominent etymological riddle of our time. So you will have to wait until next season for that one. Uh, but we have started the research on it cliffhanger. I'm not sure that we're going to add more to the conversation than is already out there, but maybe we can bring all the points of that conversation into one central spot so you can get a 30 minute episode next, next in 2020. Well that about wraps us up for today. Thank you so much for joining us. We've only got a few more episodes left in 2019 and that season two of our show. So thank you so much to everyone for listening and supporting the show. And then, uh, we will take a break in December, uh, towards the end of December over the Christmas and new year's holidays and then be back in January with season three.
Shauna Harrison:              30:15                     Yes, word of mouth is still the very best way to grow a podcast. So please tell your friends and family and if you want to chat more about the show or phrases and their stories in general, then you can join the community on Patreon. You'll find the link to that and everything else we do at Thanks again for joining us and we'll talk to you again next week. Until then, remember,
Both:                                     30:40                     words belong to their users.

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