• synonyms

half cent

  1. a bronze coin of the U.S., equal to one-half cent, issued at various periods between 1793 and 1857.
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Origin of half cent

An Americanism dating back to 1780–90
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for half cent

Historical Examples

  • Or forty postmarks for a half-cent of any date earlier than 1857.

    Harper's Young People, May 3, 1881


  • Only mos' prob'ly Victoria she'd insist on a half-cent limit.

    The Virginian

    Owen Wister

  • "It saves the half-cent charged for service," answered the maid.

  • A professor whom I met in Lausanne informed me that it now cost only a half-cent a pound.

    The Spell of Switzerland

    Nathan Haskell Dole

  • Since we do not have either a half-cent or a 2-cent coin, it has been necessary to substitute postage stamps.