One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A person who carries out the whole range of tasks in an establishment; a factotum.
Of a person: that is a do-all; that carries out tasks of all kinds. Of a product: able to carry out a comprehensive set of tasks.
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in Ben Jonson (?1573–1637), poet and playwright. From do + all [noun], probably after factotum.
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