dressed the nines

nine

[nahyn]
noun
1.
a cardinal number, eight plus one.
2.
a symbol for this number, as 9 or IX.
3.
a set of this many persons or things.
4.
a baseball team.
5.
a playing card with nine pips.
6.
the Nine, the Muses.
adjective
7.
amounting to nine in number.
Idioms
8.
dressed to the nines, looking one's best; dressed smartly, splendidly, etc.: All the girls were dressed to the nines for the party.

Origin:
before 900; Middle English; Old English nigan, nigon, cognate with Dutch negen, akin to German neun, Old Norse nīu, Gothic niun, Latin novem, Greek ennéa, Sanskrit náva

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World English Dictionary
nine (naɪn)
 
n
1.  See also number the cardinal number that is the sum of one and eight
2.  a numeral, 9, IX, etc, representing this number
3.  something representing, represented by, or consisting of nine units, such as a playing card with nine symbols on it
4.  Also: nine o'clock nine hours after noon or midnight: the play starts at nine
5.  informal dressed to the nines, dressed up to the nines elaborately dressed
6.  999 (in Britain) the telephone number of the emergency services
7.  nine to five normal office hours: he works nine to five; a nine-to-five job
 
determiner
8.  a.  amounting to nine: nine days
 b.  (as pronoun): nine of the ten are ready
 
Related: nona-
 
[Old English nigon; related to Gothic niun, Latin novem]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

nine
O.E. nigen, from P.Gmc. *niwun (cf. O.Fris. niugun, O.N. niu, Du. negen, Ger. neun, Goth. niun "nine"), from PIE (e)newn (cf. Skt. nava, Avestan nava, Gk. ennea, Alb. nende, L. novem, Lith. devnyi, O.C.S. deveti (the Balto-Slavic forms by dissimilation of -n- to -d-), O.Ir. noin, Welsh naw). Ninth is
O.E. nigonðe. Sense in cloud nine, etc., possibly because, "As the largest one-figure integer, nine is sometimes used for emphasis" [Shipley]. Nine to five "the average workday" is attested from 1959. Nine days has been proverbial since 14c. for the time which a wonder or novelty holds attention. The game of ninepins is attested from 1580.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
NINE
National Institute of Nutritional Education
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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