noun, plural pen·nies, (especially collectively for 2, 3) pence.
Origin of penny
Examples from the Web for pennies
His inheritance, which ran to millions of Deutschmarks, was worth only pennies after the raging post-war inflation.Vogue Photographer Erwin Blumenfeld: Secrets of a Fashion Legend|Tim Teeman|September 14, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Could being accused of filching a fragile old lady out of her pennies spell the end for Nicolas Sarkozy?
Basically, the notion is that you buy up distressed debt for pennies on the dollar, and then cancel it.
“In 2009, schoolchildren donated $1.7 million to Pennies for Peace,” Krakauer wrties.
He says his love for poker comes from his parents, who played with pennies when he was a little boy growing up in Montreal.
Just then a little snarly headed boy came in with two pennies and a cracked plate, "to buy some butther."Little Ferns For Fanny's Little Friends|Fanny Fern
Three shillings—soferen—five pennies—half a penny—ticket railway.My Neighbors|Caradoc Evans
The man was on his feet by this time, with his hand in his pocket, from which he drew a number of pennies.Cast Adrift|T. S. Arthur
If there was money, the food was bought lavishly; pennies were given freely to the children.The Leaven in a Great City|Lillian William Betts
Even the school children of the country helped the sufferers with their pennies.
noun plural pennies or pence (pɛns)
Word Origin for penny
Old English pening, penig, Northumbrian penning "penny," from Proto-Germanic *panninggaz (cf. Old Norse penningr, Swedish pänning, Danish penge, Old Frisian panning, Old Saxon pending, Middle Dutch pennic, Dutch penning, Old High German pfenning, German Pfennig, not recorded in Gothic, where skatts is used instead), of unknown origin.
Offa's reformed coinage on light, broad flans is likely to have begun c.760-5 in London, with an awareness of developments in Francia and East Anglia. ... The broad flan penny established by Offa remained the principal denomination, with only minor changes, until the fourteenth century. [Anna Gannon, "The Iconography of Early Anglo-Saxon Coinage," Oxford, 2003]
The English coin was originally set at one-twelfth of a shilling and was of silver, later copper, then bronze. There are two plural forms: pennies of individual coins, pence collectively. In translations it rendered various foreign coins of small denomination, especially Latin denarius, whence comes its abbreviation d.
As American English colloquial for cent, it is recorded from 1889. Penny-a-liner "writer for a journal or newspaper" is attested from 1834. Penny dreadful "cheap and gory fiction" dates from c.1870. Phrase penny-wise and pound-foolish is recorded from c.1600. Penny-pincher "miserly person" is recorded from 1906 (as an adjective penny-pinching is recorded from 1858, American English). Penny loafers attested from 1960.
In addition to the idioms beginning with penny
- penny for your thoughts, a
- penny pincher
- penny saved is a penny earned, a
- penny wise and pound foolish
- in for a penny, in for a pound
- pinch pennies
- pretty penny
- turn up (like a bad penny)