The origin is unknown, but many theories exist.   The earliest known print appearance in these senses is in an article by Stephen Trumbell in the 1964-04-25 Tuscon Daily Citizen, titled “Talking Hip in the Space Age” and discussing NASA jargon: “‘Give ’em the whole nine yards’ means an item-by-item report on any project.” The synonymous variant “all nine yards” appeared in a letter from Gale F. Linster to the editor of the 1962-12 Car Life. An earlier variant, “whole six yards”, is attested from 1912, which appears to invalidate various theories that attach specific import to the nine yards (such as a theory connecting it to the length of machine gun ammunition belts on World War II B-17 bombers, and one connecting it to the amount of concrete that a concrete mixer can hold), as well as theories that postulate a World War II origin.
- (idiomatic) All the way; with everything done completely or thoroughly.
- They really went the whole nine yards with this party.
- (idiomatic) And everything. Often used, like etc., to finish out a list.
- They put up balloons, baked a cake, sent out invitations—the whole nine yards.
- They have books, CDs, cassettes, DVDs, the whole nine yards.
- ^ Adams, Cecil (1987-04-10, with updates since), "The Straight Dope: What's the origin of "the whole nine yards"?", URL accessed on 2007-06-21.
- ^ Quinion, Michael (1999-03-20, last updated 2005-06-30), "World Wide Words: The Whole Nine Yards", URL accessed on 2007-06-21.
- ^ Martin, Gary, "The whole nine yards", URL accessed on 2007-06-21.
- ^ Zimmer, Benjamin (2007-06-21), "Language Log: Great moments in antedating", URL accessed on 2007-06-21.
- ^ Zimmer, Benjamin (2007-11-12), "Language Log: Great moments in antedating, part 2: all nine yards of goodies", URL accessed on 2007-11-13.
- ^ Schuessler, Jennifer (2012-12-26), "NYTimes.com: The Whole Nine Yards About a Phrase’s Origin", URL accessed on 2012-12-29.
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