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sterling

[stur-ling] /ˈstɜr lɪŋ/
adjective
1.
of, relating to, or noting British money:
The sterling equivalent is #5.50.
2.
(of silver) having the standard fineness of 0.925.
3.
made of silver of this fineness:
a sterling teapot.
4.
thoroughly excellent:
a man of sterling worth.
noun
5.
British currency.
6.
the standard of fineness for gold and silver coin in the United Kingdom, 0.91666 for gold and 0.500 for silver.
7.
Also called sterling silver. silver having a fineness of 0.925, now used especially in the manufacture of table utensils, jewelry, etc.
8.
manufactured articles of sterling silver.
9.
sterling flatware.
Origin of sterling
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English: name of a silver coin (see star, -ling1), with reference to the little star on some of the mintages
Related forms
sterlingly, adverb
sterlingness, noun
Synonyms
4. noble, honorable, worthy, first-rate.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for sterling silver
Historical Examples
  • The silver thus deposited, is absolutely pure—finer, in fact, than any articles of sterling silver.

  • The spoon used should be of hard wood, sterling silver or porcelain.

    The Complete Book of Cheese Robert Carlton Brown
  • Again came the laugh, merry and clear as the tinkle of sterling silver.

  • The inside of the car-doors had been stripped clean and polished to a high metal gleam that glowed like sterling silver.

    Makers Cory Doctorow
  • The length and weight vary; the latter being marked in sterling silver coin, stamped on the arrow in plain figures.

    How to Fence Aaron A. Warford
  • These could be duplicated in cut glass and sterling silver at almost any price one wished to pay.

    Gardening for Little Girls Olive Hyde Foster
  • Neither had the sterling silver candlesticks on top of the sideboard been disturbed.

  • I have never served food in anything but sterling silver before,' said Madame.

    Wanted: A Cook Alan Dale
British Dictionary definitions for sterling silver

sterling silver

noun
1.
an alloy containing not less than 92.5 per cent of silver, the remainder usually being copper
2.
sterling-silver articles collectively

sterling

/ˈstɜːlɪŋ/
noun
1.
  1. British money: pound sterling
  2. (as modifier): sterling reserves
2.
the official standard of fineness of British coins: for gold 0.91666 and for silver 0.925
3.
  1. short for sterling silver
  2. (as modifier): a sterling bracelet
4.
an article or articles manufactured from sterling silver
5.
a former British silver penny
adjective
6.
(prenominal) genuine and reliable; first-class: sterling quality
Word Origin
C13: probably from Old English steorrastar + -ling1; referring to a small star on early Norman pennies; related to Old French esterlin

Sterling

/ˈstɜːlɪŋ/
noun
1.
Peter. born 1960, Australian rugby league player: played 18 matches for Australia (1982–88)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for sterling silver

sterling

c.1300, "silver penny," probably from Middle English sterre (see star (n.)), from the stars that appeared in the design of certain Norman coins, + diminutive suffix -ling. The other theory is that it derives from Old French estedre "stater" (see stater).

Sense broadened by 1560s to "money having the quality of the sterling," and c.1600 to "English money in general." A pound sterling was originally "a pound weight of sterlings," equal to about 240 of them.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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sterling silver in Science
sterling silver
  (stûr'lĭng)   
An alloy that contains at least 92.5 percent silver and up to 7.5 percent copper or another metal, used to make jewelry and silverware.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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