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PENNY- PENCE –
(abbreviated as)
p
Current coins are: 1 penny, 2 pence, 5 pence, 10 pence, 20 pence, 50 pence, 1 pound, 2 pounds
SYMBOLS:

A penny pictured the portcullis (Fallgatter) of Westminster Palace.

The two pence coin pictured the Prince of Wales feathers.

The five pence coin pictured the thistle (a Scottish symbol).

The ten pence coin pictured a lion, which is wearing the crown of the Monarch.

The twenty pence coin pictured the Tudor Rose. The rose is the national flower of England.

The fifty pence coin could have many different designs, as quite often commemorative coins (Gedenkmünzen) were
produced. The current coin in circulation shows part of the royal shield.

Pound coins showed symbols depicting things like a leek (Lauch), of all things, for Wales, a thistle for Scotland, an oak
tree for England.

The two pound coin bears a concentric design symbolically representing technological development from the Iron Age,
through the Industrial Revolution and the Electronic Age to the Internet
POUNDS –
(sign for pound is)
£
Current bank notes (paper money) are: the 5 pound note, the 10 pound note, the 20 pound note and the 50 pound note
Scotland even has a £100 note.
The British Pound Sterling:
The pound sterling, strictly speaking refers to basic currency unit of sterling (silver), now the pound,
which is the currency of the United Kingdom (UK). The currency sign (symbol) is the pound sign,
originally ₤ with two cross-bars, then later more commonly £ with a single cross-bar. (or rarely just
"L")Both symbols derive from libra (librum), the Latin word for "pound".
The standard currency code is:
GBP = Grea t Brit is h Po und ( th e s ign f o r th e po und is ) £
The Pound (sterling) is one of the world’s most widely traded currencies along with the United States
Dollar, the Japanese Yen and the Euro.
The Pound (£) is used in the United Kingdom (England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland).
The British do not use the Euro. Although a few of the big shops will accept Euro, it is rarely used
across Britain. In 1971, the pound has been divided into 100 pence.
The pound (£) is made up of 100 pence (p) exactly like the dollar is split into 100 cents
The singular of pence is "penny". The symbol for the penny is "p"; hence coins are often pronounced
"pee" rather than "penny" or "pence.
Coins come in the following denominations (Bezeichnungen):
One pence (a penny) or (one pee)· Two pence (two pee) · Five pence (five pee) · Ten pence (ten pee) ·
Twenty pence (twenty pee) · Fifty pence (fifty pee) · One pound (a quid) · Two pounds (two quid).
Writing and saying amounts of money
When we write amounts of money in figures, the pound symbol £ is always shown in front of the figures.
For example: 'three hundred pounds' --- > '£300'.
If an amount of money consists only of pence, we put the letter 'p' after the figures.
For example: 20p is often pronounced "twenty pee" rather than "twenty pence". The singular of pence is
"penny".
If an amount of money consists of both pounds and pence, we write the pound symbol and separate the
pounds and the pence with a full stop. We do not write 'p' after the pence.
For example: 'six pounds fifty pence' --- > '£6.50'. When saying aloud an amount of money that consists of
pounds and pence, we do not usually say the word 'pence'. For example: '£6.50' -- > 'six pounds fifty'.
Note also that we say 2 pounds, 5 pounds, 10 pounds, etc. for amounts of money and 2 pound coin, 5 pound
note, 10 pound note, etc. for a piece of money (coins and notes).
Terms for British Money
The slang term for a pound or a number of pounds sterling is 'quid' or 'nicker' and there are other
slang terms for various amounts of money. The slang money expression 'quid' seems first to have
appeared in late 1600's England, probably derived from the Latin 'quid pro quo' - 'something
exchanged for something else'. The term 'nicker' is probably connected to the use of nickel in the
minting (das Prägen) of coins.
SLANG TERMS
AMOUNT
nicker or quid
lady
£1
£5 (fiver). [cockney* rhyming slang = Lady Godiva]*
tenner
score
pony
half a ton
ton
monkey
grand
folding stuff
£10 [Also known as a Paul McKenna (famous hypnotist)
£20 [cockney rhyming slang = apple core] “Apfelkern”
£25
£50
£100
£500
£1000
In general, all paper money
cockney = Einwohner des Londoner Bezirks Eastend
*Lady Godiva ist Gegenstand einer Legende, die seit dem 13. Jahrhundert belegt ist: Das Volk litt unter der
Steuerlast, für die ihr Ehemann verantwortlich war. Lady Godiva ertrug es nicht, die Menschen leiden zu
sehen. Sie bemühte sich, ihren Mann dazu zu überreden, die Steuerlast zu senken. Er erwiderte, er würde
die Steuern erst senken, wenn sie nackt durch die Stadt reitet. Denn Leofric rechnete nicht damit, dass
seine Frau tatsächlich den Mut aufbringen würde, ohne Bekleidung durch die Stadt zu reiten, damit es dem
Volk besser geht. Leofric, vom Mut seiner Frau beeindruckt, habe daraufhin alle Steuern erlassen, außer jene
auf Pferde.
Seit 1678 wurde der Ritt der Lady Godiva in Coventry durch eine Prozession gefeiert. Im 17. Jahrhundert
wurde die Geschichte weiter ausgeschmückt: Nur ein einziger Bürger (Peeping Tom) wagte es, zuzuschauen,
und erblindete daraufhin.
British Money
Since 1971, the monetary system of Great Britain is based on the decimal system. The basic unit of
British currency (currency of the United Kingdom and the Crown Dependencies) is the pound,
which is divided into one hundred pence. (abbreviated as p).
The official full name pound sterling (plural: pounds sterling) is used mainly in formal language
and also to distinguish the currency used within the United Kingdom from others that have the same
name. (GBP = Great British Pound)
As a unit of currency, the term pound originates from the value of one pound Tower weight of high
purity silver known as sterling silver. Sterling silver is an alloy of silver containing 92.5% pure
silver and 7.5% other metals, usually copper. The word sterling is believed to come from the Old
Norman French esterlin (meaning little star) transformed in stiere in Old English (strong, firm,
immovable).
The currency sign is the pound sign, originally ₤ with two cross-bars, then later more commonly £
with a single cross-bar. The pound sign derives from the '£sd' pronounced, and sometimes written
as 'LSD'. The abbreviation comes from librae, solidi, denarii (libra was the basic Roman unit of
weight; the solidus and denarius were Roman coins). '£sd' was the popular name for the predecimal currencies pounds, shillings, pence of the Britain and other countries.
The coins in circulation: 1 penny, 2 pence, 5 pence, 10 pence, 20 pence, 50 pence, 1 pound, 2 pounds.
The notes (paper money) in circulation: £5, £10, £20, £50, and £100.
Scottish £1 notes are still in circulation in Scotland. The Channel Islands and the Isle of Man have
some different coins and notes from the mainland but the monetary system is the same.
Writing and Saying Amounts of Money
When we write amounts of money in figures, the pound symbol £ is always shown in front of the
figures. For example: 'three hundred pounds' --- > '£300'.
If an amount of money consists only of pence, we put the letter 'p' after the figures. For example:
20p is often pronounced "twenty pee" rather than "twenty pence". The singular of pence is "penny".
If an amount of money consists of both pounds and pence, we write the pound symbol and separate
the pounds and the pence with a full stop. We do not write 'p' after the pence. For example: 'six
pounds fifty pence' --- > '£6.50'. When saying aloud an amount of money that consists of pounds
and pence, we do not usually say the word 'pence'. For example: '£6.50' -- > 'six pounds fifty'.
Note also that we say 2 pounds, 5 pounds, 10 pounds, etc. for amounts of money and 2 pound coin,
5 pound note, 10 pound note, etc. for a piece of money (coins and notes).
Old British Money
Prior to decimalization in 1971 Britain used a system of pounds, shillings and pence.
('£sd' or 'LSD'). The smallest unit of currency was a penny, the plural of which was
pence (or pennies). There were 12 pence in a shilling and 20 shillings in a pound. The
pound came in the form of a paper bill, called a note, or a gold coin, called a sovereign.
1 farthing (the lowest value coin) = 1/4 penny
A ha'penny (Half penny - a copper coin) = 1/2 penny (pronounced "heipni")
1 penny (a copper coin) = one of the basic units (1d)
Threepence or Thruppenny Bit = 3 pence (pronounced "thrupence")
Sixpence (a silver coin also called a 'tanner') = 6 pence
1 shilling = 12 pence (1s)
1 florin (a silver coin that numismatists regard as one of the most beautiful medieval English coins) = 2
shillings
A half-crown = 2 shillings and 6 pence
1 crown = 5 shillings = 1/4 pound
1 pound = 20 shillings = 240 pence (£1)
1 sovereign = a gold coin with a face value of one pound (about .24 ounces of 22 carat gold)
Farthings were not produced after 1956 and were withdrawn in 1960, because of inflation.
In preparation for decimalisation, the ha'penny was withdrawn in 1969, with the halfcrown being withdrawn the year after.
A penny was often called a copper after the metal it was minted from.
Pound coins were not minted before the 19th century – the silver equivalent of the pound
circulated in shillings and crowns.
A guinea (first issued on February 6th, 1663) was sometimes used as a unit of account. A
guinea was a gold coin, originally made of gold from the Guinea coast of Africa, worth 21
shillings (or one pound and 1 shilling) in old British money. A guinea was considered a
more gentlemanly amount than £1. A gentleman paid his tailor in shillings, but his barrister
in guineas.
One shilling is now equal to five (new) pence making a guinea worth one pound and five
pence in todays currency (£1.05).
Terms for British Money
The slang term for a pound or a number of pounds sterling is 'quid' or 'nicker' and there
are other slang terms for various amounts of money. The slang money expression 'quid'
seems first to have appeared in late 1600's England, probably derived from the Latin 'quid
pro quo' - 'something exchanged for something else'. The term 'nicker' is probably
connected to the use of nickel in the minting of coins.
The old slang term for a shilling was 'bob' and for a guinea - 'yellow-boy'.
Other slang terms: Fiver = £5, Lady Godiva (Cockney rhyming slang for a fiver) = £5,
Tenner = £10, Pony = £25, Half a ton = £50, Ton = £100, Monkey = £500, Grand=
£1000.
British Money
Money, money, money
Pound sterling, strictly speaking refers to basic currency unit of sterling, now the pound , which is the
currency of the United Kingdom (UK). The sign for the pound is £ (or rarely just "L"). Both symbols
derive from libra , the Latin word for " pound ". The standard ISO 4217 currency code is GBP = Great
Britain Pound. The pound sterling is one of the worlds most widely traded currencies along with the
United States dollar, the Japanese yen and the euro. In the UK, in order to distinguish the unit of
currency from the unit of weight, and perhaps from other units of currency that have the same name, a
pound is sometimes referred to more formally as a pound sterling or sometimes simply sterling . The
slang term quid is also substituted in informal conversation for "pound(s) sterling". The sterling was
originally a name for a silver penny of 1/240 pound. In modern times the pound has replaced the penny
as the basic unit of currency as inflation has steadily eroded the value of the currency. Originally a silver
penny had the purchasing power of slightly less than a modern pound.
History of British Money
As a unit of currency, the term pound originates from the value of a troy pound of high purity silver
known as sterling silver . An Act in 1266 set the weight of the silver penny, so one pound of sterling
silver would yield 240 silver pennies. However, although the Pound was subsequently used in
accounting (to complement and eventually replace the Mark, valued at 160 silver pennies), no pound
coin was issued until 1489.
The penny was originally one '"pennyweight"' of silver. A pennyweight is a unit of mass which is the
same as 1.555 grams, or 1⁄240 of a troy pound. So, a penny was literally, as well as monetarily, 1⁄240 of
a troy pound of sterling silver Sterling (with a basic currency unit of the Tealby penny , rather than the
pound) was introduced as the English currency by King Henry II in 1158 , though the name sterling
wasn't acquired until later.
Pound sterling was established in 1560 – 61 by Elizabeth I and her advisors, foremost among them Sir
Thomas Gresham , brought order to the financial chaos of Tudor England that had been occasioned by
the "Great Debasement" of the coinage, which brought on a debilitating inflation during the years 1543
– 51 . By 1551, according to Fernand Braudel (Braudel 1984, pp 356ff), the silver content of a penny
had dropped to one part in three. The coinage had become mere fiduciary currency (as modern coins
are), and the exchange rate in Antwerp where English cloth was marketed to Europe, had deteriorated.
All the coin in circulation was called in for reminting at the higher standard, and paid for at discounted
rates.
Pound sterling maintained its intrinsic value — "a fetish in public opinion" Braudel called it — uniquely
among European currencies, even after the United Kingdom officially adopted the gold standard, until
after World War I, weathering financial crises in 1621 , in 1694 – 96 , when John Locke pamphleteered
for the pound sterling as "an invariable fundamental unit" and again in 1774 and 1797 . Not even the
violent disorders of the Civil War devalued the pound sterling in European money markets. Braudel
attributes to the fixed currency, which was never devalued over the centuries, England's easy credit,
security of contracts and rise to financial superiority during the 18th century . The pound sterling has
been the money of account of the Bank of England from its inception in 1694.
The Guinea was a coin until 1797, it was the first British machine-struck gold coin, and was originally
worth one pound. However, the name continued in use to reflect a sum of 21/- (one pound and a
shilling) well into the 20th century. In fact the term guinea survives in some circles, notably horse
racing, to mean an amount of one pound and five pence in decimalised currency.
By 1945, the money in circulation was as follows. The most commonly used nicknames are given in
brackets.
Farthing = copper coin value 1/4 penny
Ha'penny = copper coin value 1/2 penny
Penny = copper coin, one of the basic units = 1d
Thrupenny bit = brass coloured twelve sided coin value three pennies = 3d (thrupence)
Sixpence (tanner) = silver coin value six pennies = 6d
Shilling (bob) = silver coin second basic unit, value 12 pennies =1/Florin (two bob) = silver coin value two shillings = 2/Half-crown (half a dollar) = silver coin value two shillings and six pence = 2/6d
Ten shillings (ten bob) = banknote value 10 shillings = 10/Pound (quid) = third basic unit, banknote value 20 shillings or 240 pennies = £
Five pounds (fiver) = banknote value five pounds = £5
'Copper' and 'silver' coins were, by this time, made from alloys and were named for their colour, rather
than the actual metal used. There were 20 shillings to the pound and 12 pence to the shilling. Farthings
were not produced after 1956 and were withdrawn in 1960, because of inflation. In preparation for
decimalisation, the ha'penny was withdrawn in 1969, with the half-crown being withdrawn the year
after. From 1968, 5p and 10p coins, identical in size, weight and value to the shilling and florin
respectively, were introduced. The symbol, £, for the pound is derived from the first letter of the Latin
word for pound, the librum. The old abbreviation for the penny, d, was derived from the Roman
denarius. The old abbreviation for the shilling, s, was derived from the Roman solidus. -
Decimalisation
Prior to decimalisation in 1971, each pound was divided into 240 pence — although it was usually
expressed as being divided into twenty shillings , with each shilling equal to twelve pence. The symbol
for the shilling was "/" or "s" — not from the first letter of the word, but rather from the Latin word
solidus . The symbol for the penny was "d", from the Latin word denarius . (The solidus and denarius
were Roman coins.
After Decimal Day, the value of one penny was therefore different from its pre-decimalisation value.
For the first few years after 1971, the new type of penny was commonly referred to as a "new penny".
Coins for denominations of ½p, 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p and 50p all bore the name NEW PENCE until 1982,
when the inscription changed to ONE PENNY, TWO PENCE, FIVE PENCE and so on.
Denominations
One pound is divided into 100 pence, the singular of which is "penny". The symbol for the penny is "p";
hence coins are often pronounced "pee" rather than "penny" or "pence.
Coins come in the following denominations: One pence (a penny) or (one pee)· Two pence (two pee) ·
Five pence (five pee) · Ten pence (ten pee) · Twenty pence (twenty pee) · Fifty pence (fifty pee) · One
pound (a quid) · Two pounds (two quid).
Notes come in the following denominations: £5 note . £10 note . £20 note . £50 note.
Scotland even has a £100 note.
There are no Welsh banknotes in circulation.
Interesting Facts About Money
Slang for British Money
Some pre-decimalisation coins or denominations became commonly known by slang terms, perhaps the
most well known being bob for a shilling, and quid for a pound.
A farthing was a mag, a silver threepence was a joey and the later aluminium-bronze threepence was
called a threepenny bit (pronounced threp'ny bit), a sixpence was a tanner , the two-shilling coin or
florin was a two-bob bit, and the two shillings and sixpence coin or half-crown was a half dollar.
Common Slang
Terms
tanner
bob
Oxford
nicker or quid
lady
tenner
score
pony
ton
monkey
grand
folding stuff
Amount
sixpence - pre decimalisation
a shilling - pre decimalisation
5 shillings or a crown [cockney rhyming slang =
Oxford Scholar
£1
£5 (fiver). [cockney rhyming slang = Lady Godiva]
£10 [Also known as a Paul McKenna (famous
hypnotist
£20 [cockney rhyming slang = apple core ]
£25
£100
£500
£1000
In general, all paper money
Maundy money
There are Maundy coins in denominations of one, two, three and four pence. They bear dates from 1822
to the present and are minted in very small quantities. Though they are legal tender in the UK, they are
never encountered in circulation. The pre-decimal Maundy pieces have the same legal tender status and
value as post-decimal ones, and were effectively increased in face value by 140% upon decimalization.
Their numismatic value is, of course, much greater.
Symbols
The Britannia image was on British coins for centuries. Britannia is the Boadicea-like female warrior
that is a traditional emblem for Britain and the British Empire, and is symbolic of British democracy,
patriotism and liberty. Her image first appeared on the copper farthing back in 1672.
Over time designs on some coins changed. Many coins in circulation show the following symbols.
A penny pictured the portcullis of Westminster Palace.
The two pence coin pictured the Prince of Wales feathers.
The five pence coin pictured the thistle (a Scottish symbol).
The ten pence coin pictured a lion, which is wearing the crown of the Monarch.
The twenty pence coin pictured the Tudor Rose. The rose is the national flower of England.
The fifty pence coin could have many different designs, as quite often commemorative coins were
produced. The current coin in circulation shows part of the royal shield.
Pound coins showed symbols depicting things like a leek, of all things, for Wales, a thistle for Scotland,
an oak tree for England.
Nowadays British coins, apart from the two pound coin, picture parts of the Royal Coat of Arms, if you
put them all together it shows the complete picture as represented on the one pound coin.
The two pound coin bears a concentric design symbolically representing technological development
from the Iron Age, through the Industrial Revolution and the Electronic Age to the Internet.
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