nine yards as a measurement for a fancy dress
adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Sun Sep 15 14:10:39 UTC 2013
There are two English folk songs that mention "nine yards" when
discussing a very fancy dress: "a fine silken gown, Nine yards all
a-dropping to the ground". Also, "a nice silken gown, Nine yards long
to drag all on the ground."
The opulent dresses are gifts designed to impress a lady. The songs
were published by an English Folklore Society in 1905. Based on these
songs the connotations for "nine yards" would be: the most impressive,
the most complete, the total package.
It is not clear if these songs were present in the United States in
1905. So I am posting this as a datum of uncertain relevance to "whole
Periodical: Journal of the Folk-Song Society
Volume: 2 (Second Part of Volume 2)
Printed for the Society by Barnicott and Pearce at the Athenaeum Press, Taunton
Song Number 8
Quote Page 87
8.-MADAM, I'LL PRESENT TO YOU THE KEYS OF MY HEART.
Tune noted by C. F. Sharp.
Song by Mrs. Welch, at Ile Bruers, Somerset, Sept. 6th, 1904,
He. Madam, I'll present to you a fine silken gown,
Nine yards all a-dropping to the ground,
If thou wilt walk with me.
She. I will not accept a fine silken gown,
Nine yards all a-dropping to the ground;
I will not walk with thee.
Song Number 9
Quote Page 88
9.—MY MAN JOHN; OR, MADAM, I'LL PRESENT YOU.
Tune noted by C. J. Sharp.
Sung by Mrs. Glover,
at Huish Episcopi, Somerset, Sept. 6th, 1904.
He. Madam, I'll present you with a nice silken gown,
Nine yards long to drag all on the ground.
O madam, will you walk with me?
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