Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Spick and Span New.

E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Spick and Span New.
Quite and entirely new. A spic is a spike or nail, and a span is a chip. So that a spick and span new ship is one in which every nail and chip is new. Halliwell mentions “span new.” According to Dr. Johnson, the phrase was first applied to cloth just taken off the spannans or stretchers. (Dutch, spikspelderniew.)   1



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