Posted by ESC on November 15, 2004
In Reply to: At Sixes and Sevens posted by Alice on November 15, 2004
: Where did this originate? What is it's meaning? Thankyou so much! ([email protected])
From the srchives (searching under sixes and sevens):
From "Hog on Ice" by Charles Earle Funk: (paraphrased): The expression is believed to be 150 years old at least (this written in 1948). An older form, "on six and seven," was known in Chaucer's day and he used it in 1375 in "Troylus and Cryseyde." But he didn't explain it. Mr. Funk thinks Chaucer's use referred to an old dicing game. From Chaucer and other sources, we know there was a game where to try a throw of six and seven was a very risky gamble. One who staked his win on such a throw was reckless in the extreme.
Additional discussion at: http://www.phrases.org.uk/bulletin_board/5/messages/110.html