A game of cards; so called from the four points that are at
stake, viz. High, Low, Jack, and Game.
To go on all fours
is to crawl about on knees and hands like a little child.
It does not go on all fours
means it does not suit in every minute particular; it does not
fully satisfy the demand. It limps as a quadruped which does not go on
all its four legs. Omnis comparatio claudicat
“No simile can go on all-fours.” Macaulay.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894