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Cap-a-pie

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The general etymology is the French cap à pied, but the French phrase is de pied en cap.

“Armed at all points exactly cap-a-pie.”



“I am courtier, cap-a-pe.”


Shakespeare: Winter’s Tale, iv. 3.

We are told that cap à pie is Old French, but it would be desirable to give a quotation from some old French author to verify this assertion. I have hunted in vain for the purpose. Again, is pie Old French for pied? This is not a usual change. The usual change would be pied into pie. The Latin might be De capĭte and pedem.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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Cap and Bells
Cap and Feather Days
Cap and Gown
Cap in Hand
Cap of Fools (The)
Cap of Liberty
Cap of Maintenance
Cap of Time
Cap-acquaintance (A)
Cap-money
Cap-a-pie
Capfull of Wind
Cape
Cape of Storms
Capel Court
Caper
Caper Merchant
Capet (Cap-pay)
Capital
Capital Fellow (A)
Capitals