keep ones shirt on


a long- or short-sleeved garment for the upper part of the body, usually lightweight and having a collar and a front opening.
an undergarment of cotton, or other material, for the upper part of the body.
in one's shirt sleeves, without a coat: It was so hot that they worked in their shirt sleeves. Also, in one's shirt-sleeves.
keep one's shirt on, Informal. to refrain from becoming angry or impatient; remain calm: Tell him to keep his shirt on until we're ready.
lose one's shirt, Informal. to lose all that one possesses; suffer a severe financial reverse: He lost his shirt in the stock market.

before 1150; Middle English schirte, Old English scyrte; cognate with German Schürze, Dutch schort apron, Old Norse skyrta skirt

shirtless, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
shirt (ʃɜːt)
1.  a garment worn on the upper part of the body, esp by men, usually of light material and typically having a collar and sleeves and buttoning up the front
2.  nightshirt short for undershirt
3.  informal keep your shirt on refrain from losing your temper (often used as an exhortation to another)
4.  informal put one's shirt on to bet all one has on (a horse, etc)
5.  informal lose one's shirt on to lose all one has on (a horse, etc)
[Old English scyrte; related to Old English sceortshort, Old Norse skyrta skirt, Middle High German schurz apron]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. scyrte "skirt, tunic," from P.Gmc. *skurtijon "a short garment" (cf. O.N. skyrta, Swed. skjorta "skirt, kirtle;" M.Du. scorte, Du. schort "apron;" M.H.G. schurz, Ger. Schurz "apron"), from the same source as O.E. scort, sceort (see short). Formerly of garments worn by
both sexes, but long in modern use only for men; in ref. to women's tops, reintroduced 1896. Shirt-sleeve in ref. to "without a coat" first recorded 1566. Bloody shirt, exposed as a symbol of outrage, is attested from 1586. To give (someone) the shirt off one's back is from 1771. To lose one's shirt "suffer total financial loss" is from 1935. To keep one's shirt on "be patient" (1904) is from the notion of stripping down for a fight.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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