The whole kit and caboodle is an idiom that first appeared in the United States in the middle of the 1800s. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. We will examine the meaning of the phrase the whole kit and caboodle, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences.
The whole kit and caboodle means the entire amount of things or the entire group of people being discussed. The word kit in the phrase the whole kit and caboodle is a reference to a soldier’s kit, which is the collection of supplies and personal items that a soldier carries with him. The word caboodle in the phrase the whole kit and caboodle is an alliteration of the word boodle. Boodle appears in the United States in the 1830s to mean a crowd of people, later evolving to mean a large amount of ill-gotten money. An older rendering of the phrase is the whole kit and boodle. The Oxford English Dictionary lists the proper spelling as kit and caboodle, though it is occasionally seen spelled as kit and kaboodle
Pour enough water gently into the pot so the whole kit and caboodle is sitting in a puddle and leave it there for 20 minutes. (The Albuquerque Journal)
Almost the whole kit and caboodle was packed up and transported to Fryeburg. (The Lewiston Sun Journal)
But then, Supervisor Lynn Compton, whose South County district neighbors Hill’s, played a game of selfish hardball on how the county’s public parks budget should be divided and got Debbie Arnold and John Peschong to go along with a money grab that allocated the whole $1.2 million kit and kaboodle to projects in Nipomo. (The San Luis Obispo Tribune)