Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Tenpenny Nails.

 Tennyson (Alfred).Tenson. 
CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Tenpenny Nails.
 
Very large nails, 1,000 of which would weigh 10 lbs. Four-penny nails are those which are much smaller, as 1,000 of them would weigh only 4 lbs.; two-penny nails, being half the size, 1,000 of them would weigh only 2 lbs. Then we come to the ounce nails, 1,000 weighing only 8, 12, or 16 ounces, the standard unit being always 1,000 nails. Penny is a corruption of pounder, poun’er, pun’er, penny, as two penny nails, four-penny nails, ten-penny nails, etc., according to the weight of 1,000 of them.   1
 


 Tennyson (Alfred).Tenson. 

 
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