Etymology
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whole nine yards (n.)
by 1970, of unknown origin; perhaps arbitrary (see cloud nine). Among the guesses that have been made without real evidence: concrete mixer trucks were said to have dispensed in this amount. Or the yard might be the word used in the slang sense of "one hundred dollars." Several similar phrases meaning "everything" arose in the 1940s (whole ball of wax, which is likewise of obscure origin, whole schmear); older examples include whole hog (see hog (n.)) and whole shooting match (1896); whole shebang (1895).
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yardage (n.)
"aggregate number of yards," 1900 in sports, from yard (n.2) + -age.
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yardbird (n.)
"convict," 1956, from yard (n.1) + bird (n.1), from the notion of prison yards; earlier it meant "basic trainee" (World War II armed forces slang).
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trimmer (n.)
1550s, "one who trims," agent noun from trim (v.). Meaning "one who changes opinions, actions, etc. to suit circumstances" is from 1680s, from the verb in the nautical sense of "adjust the balance of sails or yards with reference to the wind's direction" (1620s).
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life-line (n.)
also lifeline, 1700, "rope used to save lives" in any way (especially for the safety of sailors on vessels in bad weather or on the yards), from life (n.) + line (n.); figurative sense first attested 1860. Sense in palmistry from 1890.
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perch (n.3)

"measure of land equal to a square lineal perch" (usually 160 to the acre), late 14c., earlier "land-measuring rod" (c. 1300), from Old French perche "unit of linear measurement" (5.5 yards), also "measuring rod, pole, bar" used to measure this length (13c.), from Latin pertica "pole, long staff, measuring rod," which is related to Oscan perek "pole," Umbrian perkaf "twigs, rods." The same word as perch (n.1).

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tweed (n.)

1839, a trade name for a type of woolen fabric:

MICHAEL NOWAK, alias John Mazurkiewiez, was indicted for stealing on the 15th of April 2 ¼ yards of woollen cloth, called tweed, value 12s., and 2 ¼ yards of woollen cloth, called doe skin, value 17s., the goods of George Priestley Heap. [London Central Criminal Court minutes of evidence from 1839]

This apparently developed from the "Tweed Fishing or Travelling Trousers" advertised in numerous publications from 1834-1838 by the clothing house of Doudney & Son, 49 Lombard Street.

So celebrated has amateur rod-fishing in the Tweed become, that the proper costume of the sportsman has now become an object of speculation among the London tailors, one of whom advertises among other articles of dress "Tweed Fishing Trousers." The anglers who have so long established their head-quarters at Kelso, for the purpose of enjoying the amusement of salmon fishing in the Tweed, have had excellent sport lately : some of the most skilful having caught five or six salmon a day, weighing from six to fourteen pounds each. [New Sporting Magazine, June 1837]

Thus ultimately named for the River Tweed in Scotland. The place name has not been explained, and it is perhaps pre-Celtic and non-Indo-European.

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pop (n.1)

"a hit with a smart, explosive sound," c. 1400, of imitative origin. Meaning "effervescent carbonated beverage" is from 1812.

A new manufactory of a nectar, between soda-water and ginger-beer, and called pop, because 'pop goes the cork' when it is drawn. [Southey, letter, 1812]

Sense of "ice cream on a stick" is from 1923 (see popsicle). Meaning "the (brief) time of a 'pop'" is from 1530s. Pop goes the weasel, a country dance, was popular 1850s in school yards, with organ grinders, at court balls, etc.

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pope (n.)

"the Bishop of Rome as head of the Roman Catholic Church," c. 1200, from Old English papa (9c.), from Church Latin papa "bishop, pope" (in classical Latin, "tutor"), from Greek papas "patriarch, bishop," originally "father" (see papa).

Applied to bishops of Asia Minor and taken as a title by the Bishop of Alexandria c. 250. In the Western Church, applied especially to the Bishop of Rome since the time of Leo the Great (440-461), the first great asserter of its privileges, and claimed exclusively by them from 1073 (usually in English with a capital P-). Popemobile, his car, is from 1979. Pope's nose for "fleshy part of the tail of a bird" is by 1895. Papal, papacy, later acquisitions in English, preserve the original vowel.

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Limburger (n.)

famously pungent type of cheese, 1870, short for Limburger cheese (1817), from Limburg, province in northeast Belgium, where the cheese is made. The place name is from Germanic *lindo "lime tree" (see linden) + *burg "fortification."

Some frauds a few years ago started a Limburger cheese factory down in Keyport, New Jersey, but the imposition was soon exposed. A man could come within 300 yards of the spurious article without being knocked down, and as the smell never had any effect on the town clock the business was soon discontinued. [John E. Boyd, "The Berkeley Heroine and Others Stories," 1899]
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