Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Penny (A)

 Penny (in the sense of pound).Penny-a-liner (A). 
CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Penny (A)
 
(Anglo-Saxon, pening or penig). For many hundred years the unit of money currency, hence pening-monegre (a money-changer). There were two coins so named, one called the greater = the fifth part of a shilling, and the other called the less = the 12th part of a shilling.   1
   My penny of observation (Love’s Labour’s Lost, iii. 1). My pennyworth of wit; my natural observation or motherwit. Probably there is some pun or confusion between penetration and “penny of observation” or “penn’orth of wit.”   2
   A penny for your thoughts. See Heywood’s Dialogue, pt. ii. 4. (See PENNYWORTH.)   3
 


 Penny (in the sense of pound).Penny-a-liner (A). 

 
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