But in political aspirations the giving of an inch has ever created the desire for an ell.
Ere, said he at last, jerking his head and rubbing his jaw, how the ell did you do it?
"Hi never want to be able to find my way back to that 'ell 'ole again," he said.
She led the way into the house, through the long wood-shed and ell.
Patty led her upstairs and through the hall into a sort of ell part where there were two rooms.
Give people like that an inch, and they'll expect a weekly ell.'
Men wore the hair long, and had hats of cloth a quarter of an ell or more in height, and all wore most sumptuous chains of gold.
It was given at six ells, a Flemish ell being about 27½ inches.
Again I call to the leader, and again hear a word ending in "ell."
ell and tell is ne'er forgotten, and the best pay's on the peck bottom.
"unit of measure of 45 inches," Old English eln, originally "forearm, length of the arm" (as a measure, anywhere from a foot and a half to two feet), from PIE *el- (1) "elbow, forearm" (cf. Greek olene "elbow," Latin ulna, Armenian uln "shoulder," Sanskrit anih "part of the leg above the knee," Lithuanian alkune "elbow").
The exact distance varied, depending on whose arm was used as the base and whether it was measured from the shoulder to the fingertip or the wrist: the Scottish ell was 37.2 inches, the Flemish 27 inches. Latin ulna also was a unit of linear measure, and cf. cubit.
Whereas shee tooke an inche of liberty before, tooke an ell afterwardes [Humfrey Gifford, "A Posie of Gilloflowers," 1580].
type of building extension, 1773, American English; so called for resemblance to the shape of the alphabet letter.