Word Origin & History
O.E. siex, from P.Gmc. *sekhs (cf. O.S. seks, O.N., O.Fris. sex, M.Du. sesse, Du. zes, O.H.G. sehs, Ger. sechs, Goth. saihs), from PIE *seks (cf. Skt. sas, Avestan kshvash, Gk. hex, L. sex, O.C.S. sesti, Lith. sesi, O.Ir. se, Welsh chwech). Six-shooter is first attested 1844; six-pack of beverage is
from 1952. Six of one and half-a-dozen of the other "little difference" is recorded from 1836. Phrase at sixes and sevens "hazarding all ones chances," is first in Chaucer, perhaps from dicing (the original form was on six and seven) and could be a corruption of on cinque and sice, using the Fr. names (which were common in M.E.) for the highest numbers on the dice.