span(redirected from spanning)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to spanning: Spanning tree, Spanning set
be spick and span
a place that is spick and span is very tidy and clean The kitchen was spick and span as ever, every surface wiped down and everything in its place.
spick and span
Neat and clean, as in When Ruth has finished cleaning, the whole house is spick and span. This term combines two nouns that are now obsolete, spick, "a nail" or "spike," and span, "a wooden chip." In the 1500s a sailing ship was considered spick and span when every spike and chip was brand-new. The transfer to the current sense took place in the mid-1800s.
spic and span
Neat and clean. A “spick” was a nail (as in “spike”), “span” was a wood shaving, and a new wooden object had shiny spicks in it and fresh spans around it. Over the years the meaning of newness was replaced by that of something fresh and clean (as a new object usually was).