Green’s Dictionary of Slang

whole shebang n.

also whole ghesabo
[US milit. jargon shebang, a soldier’s tent, where his possessions were kept, ult. SE shebang, a hut, a dwelling]

1. absolutely everything.

M.C. Legar Sea Drift 64: But it floated bravely – bravely enough, as Evan, [...] assured her, ‘to take the whole shebang at once’, only Morgan refused to let the trial be made.
[US]A.H. Lewis Wolfville 134: The whole shebang puttin’ on more dog than a Mexican officer of revenoo.
[US]L.W. Payne Jr ‘Word-List From East Alabama’ in DN III:v 368: shebang, n. [...] often in the expression ‘the whole shebang.’.
[US]A. Berkman Prison Memoirs of an Anarchist (1926) 320: Dere’s a smart guy fer you, fellers; owns de whole Keystone shebang.
[UK]Boy’s Own Paper XL:4 217: Th’ owld man towld um to lave hands off an’ they’d divide the whole shebang afther th’ dance.
[Ire]Joyce Ulysses 357: Then if one thing stopped the whole ghesabo would stop bit by bit.
[UK]D. Lawley Hustling Hobo 112: The whole darned shebang was rotten with clap and syphilis, and lousy with whores and tin-horn gamblers.
[US]J.L. Kuethe ‘Johns Hopkins Jargon’ in AS VII:5 336: shebang — the entire lot; a collection of anything.
[UK]M. Marshall Tramp-Royal on the Toby 219: I’ve got the whole shebang guessing.
[US]Z.N. Hurston Seraph on the Suwanee (1995) 908: Let’s heave the whole she-bang over the side and let the little bastards drown!
[NZ]G. Slatter Gun in My Hand 206: I’m sick of this joint. Sick of the whole shebang.
[US]T. Berger Reinhart in Love (1963) 106: You can’t light a match but what the whole shebang would go up.
[UK]J. Mandelkau Buttons 102: It was decided to try to rent a Motel and the whole shebang that goes with it.
[Ire](con. 1940s) P. O’Farrell Tell Me, Sean O’Farrell 78: The whole shebang of them arrived in England and had a right cosher (good evening’s feasting).
[US]J. Wambaugh Golden Orange (1991) 339: Releasing the pushers was more lucrative than booking the whole shebang.
[US]C. Hiaasen Skinny Dip 211: The goddam whole shebang was in danger of falling apart.
[US]Simon & Burns ‘Transitions’ Wire ser. 5 ep. 4 [TV script] And that was just a love-tap. think what would have happened if we’d hit the good senator with the whole shebang.
[Aus]L. Redhead Thrill City [ebook] Five hundred if you want the whole lezzo shebang.
[UK]K. Sampson Killing Pool 1: Mere weeks from the long goodbye and the whole shebang blows up in my face.
[UK]A. Wheatle Crongton Knights 48: ‘I don’t just wanna be a chef — I wanna own the whole damn shebang’.

2. of a person, the best, the ultimate.

[UK]A.B. Guthrie Way West 111: ‘One man isn’t a train.’ ‘I didn’t figure you knew that.’ ‘What do you mean?’ ‘Ain’t you the whole shebang?’.