Etymology
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whole cloth (n.)
early 15c., "piece of cloth of full size," as opposed to a piece cut out for a garment; figurative sense first attested 1570s.
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whole (adj.)
Old English hal "entire, whole; unhurt, uninjured, safe; healthy, sound; genuine, straightforward," from Proto-Germanic *haila- "undamaged" (source also of Old Saxon hel, Old Norse heill, Old Frisian hal, Middle Dutch hiel, Dutch heel, Old High German, German heil "salvation, welfare"), from PIE *kailo- "whole, uninjured, of good omen" (source also of Old Church Slavonic celu "whole, complete;" see health).

The spelling with wh- developed early 15c. The sense in whole number is from early 14c. Whole milk is from 1782. On the whole "considering all facts or circumstances" is from 1690s. For phrase whole hog, see hog (n.).
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whole (n.)
"entire body or company; the full amount," late 14c., from whole (adj.).
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cloth (n.)

"woven fabric, pliable stuff made of intertexture of threads or fibers," Old English claþ "a cloth, sail, cloth covering, woven or felted material to wrap around one," hence, also, "garment," from Proto-Germanic *kalithaz (source also of Old Frisian klath "cloth," Middle Dutch cleet, Dutch kleed "garment, dress," Middle High German kleit, German Kleid "garment"), which is of obscure origin, perhaps a substratum word.

As an adjective, "made or consisting of cloth," from 1590s. Meaning "distinctive clothing worn by some group" (servants of one house, men of some profession or trade) is from 1590s, hence The cloth "the clerical profession" (1701).

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cheese-cloth (n.)

"coarse cotton fabric of open texture," 1650s, originally cloth in which curds were pressed, from cheese (n.1) + cloth.

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hand-cloth (n.)
Old English hand-claþe; see hand (n.) + cloth (n.).
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oil-cloth (n.)

also oilcloth, 1690s, "cotton or a similar fabric waterproofed with oil," from oil (n.) + cloth. In reference to an oil-treated canvas used as a cheap floor covering, 1796.

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sail-cloth (n.)

"hemp or cotton canvas used in making ships' sails," c. 1200, from sail (n.) + cloth (n.).

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loin-cloth (n.)
also loincloth, "cloth worn about the loins" (properly the hips), 1851, from loin (n.) + cloth (n.).
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