penny

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See also: Penny

English[edit]

A 2005 US penny

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old English penning, penniġ, from Proto-Germanic *panningaz, of uncertain origin.

Noun[edit]

penny (plural pennies or pence)

  1. (historical) In the United Kingdom and Ireland, a copper coin worth 1/240 of a pound sterling or Irish pound before decimalisation. Abbreviation: d.
  2. In the United Kingdom, a copper coin worth 1/100 of a pound sterling.
  3. (historical) In Ireland, a coin worth 1/100 of an Irish pound before the introduction of the euro. Abbreviation: p.
  4. In the US and Canada, a one-cent coin, worth 1/100 of a dollar. Abbreviation: ¢.
  5. In various countries, a small-denomination copper or brass coin.
  6. A unit of nail size, said to be either the cost per 100 nails, or the number of nails per penny. Abbreviation: d.
  7. Money in general.
    to turn an honest penny
    • Shakespeare
      What penny hath Rome borne, / What men provided, what munition sent?

Usage notes[edit]

The plural pence is used as a unit of currency. The plural is pennies is used for other cases, in particular when referring to multiple individual coins.

Synonyms[edit]

  • (1/240 of a pound sterling): old penny
  • (1/100 of a pound sterling): new penny (old-fashioned)
  • (one-cent coin): cent

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

one-cent coin in US and Canada See cent

Verb[edit]

penny (third-person singular simple present pennies, present participle pennying, simple past and past participle pennied)

  1. (slang) To jam a door shut by inserting pennies between the doorframe and the door.
    Zach and Ben had only been at college for a week when their door was pennied by the girls down the hall.
  2. (electronics) To circumvent the tripping of an electrical circuit breaker by the dangerous practice of inserting a coin in place of a fuse in a fuse socket.

See also[edit]


French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from English

Noun[edit]

penny m (plural pennys)

  1. penny

External links[edit]