• "She, smiling, takes the pennies...."
    "She, smiling, takes the pennies...."
  • WordNet 3.6
    • n penny a coin worth one-hundredth of the value of the basic unit
    • n penny a fractional monetary unit of Ireland and the United Kingdom; equal to one hundredth of a pound
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

I don't know if you're acquainted with a paper called the Penny Patrician? I don't know if you're acquainted with a paper called the Penny Patrician?

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The first penny candy to be wrapped in America was the Tootsie Roll in 1896
    • Penny A former English coin, originally of copper, then of bronze, the twelfth part of an English shilling in account value, and equal to four farthings, or about two cents; -- usually indicated by the abbreviation d.the initial of denarius).
    • Penny Any small sum or coin; a groat; a stiver.
    • a Penny Denoting the weight in pounds for one thousand; -- used in combination, with respect to nails; as, tenpenny nails, nails of which one thousand weight ten pounds.
    • Penny Money, in general; as, to turn an honest penny . "What penny hath Rome borne,
      What men provided, what munition sent?"
    • Penny (Script) See Denarius.
    • a Penny Worth or costing one penny; as, penny candy.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: One penny doubled everyday becomes over 5 million dollars in just 30 days.
    • n penny A silver coin weighing 22 ½ grains, or the 240th part of a Tower pound. It corresponded to the Roman denarius, and was also called easterling. (See easterling, n., 2.) In 1346 its weight was reduced to 20 grains. Similar coins called pennies were in use in Scotland and Ireland. [In early times any coin could be called a penny. Thus, the gold coins called florins, struck by order of Edward III. in 1343, were called by the people gold pennies, and the half-florins and quarter-florins respectively gold halfpennies and gold farthings.]
    • n penny In Great Britain, a copper (since 1860 bronze) token coin, of which twelve are equal to a shilling and 240 to a pound sterling. It weighs 145.833 grains troy, and is worth in metal about one fourth of its face-value. It is about equivalent to two cents United States currency. Copper pennies were first struck in the time of James I. (about 1609). In Scotland the value of the old penny was only one twelfth of a penny sterling, the pound being equal to 20 pence sterling. Abbreviated d. (for denarius).
    • n penny In the United States, a cent.
    • n penny An insignificant coin or value; a small sum.
    • n penny Money in general: as, it cost a pretty penny (a good round sum); to turn an honest penny.
    • n penny Pound: only in composition, in the phrases fourpenny, sixpenny, eightpenny, tenpenny nails, designating nails of such sizes that 1,000 will weigh 4, 6, 8, or 10 pounds. The original form of the phrases was four-pound nails, six-pound nails, etc.— that is, nails weighing 4, 6, etc., pounds to a thousand. These phrases, pronounced four-pun' nails, six-pun' nails, etc., seem to have become confused in the popular mind with fourpenny, sixpenny, etc., familiar adjectives denoting the price of small purchases; hence the present form, and so with eightpenny and tenpenny. See nail, 5.
    • n penny In archery, a measure of weight for arrows, equal to one twelfth of the weight of a new (British) silver shilling: as, a 4s. 6d. arrow.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Pennies are made of 95% copper and 5% zinc.
    • n Penny pen′i a copper coin (bronze since 1860), originally silver=1⁄12 of a shilling, or four farthings: a small sum: money in general:
    • n Penny pen′i (N.T.) a silver coin=7½d.: pound, in fourpenny, sixpenny, tenpenny nails=four, six, ten pound weight to the thousand
    • ***


  • Plutarch
    “Nothing is cheap which is superfluous, for what one does not need, is dear at a penny.”
  • Pablo Picasso
    “It is personality with a penny's worth of talent. Error which chances to rise above the commonplace.”
  • Shelby Friedman
    Shelby Friedman
    “Nowadays, a penny saved is ridiculous!”
  • Robert Pollok
    Robert Pollok
    “With one hand he put a penny in the urn of poverty, and with the other took a shilling out.”
  • French Proverb
    French Proverb
    “Penny wise is often pound foolish.”
  • Francis Bacon
    “Be not penny-wise. Riches have wings. Sometimes they fly away of themselves, and sometimes they must be set flying to bring in more.”


A penny for your thoughts - This idiom is used as a way of asking someone what they are thinking about.
A penny saved is a penny earned - Saving money is just as important as earning money- we shouldn't spend it foolishly.
A pretty penny - If something costs a pretty penny, it is very expensive.
In for a penny, in for a pound - If something is worth doing then it is a case of in for a penny, in for a pound, which means that when gambling or taking a chance, you might as well go the whole way and take all the risks, not just some.
Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves - (UK) If you look after the pennies, the pounds will look after themselves, meaning that if someone takes care not to waste small amounts of money, they will accumulate capital. ('Look after the pence and the pounds will look after themselves' is an alternative form of this idiom.)
Not have two pennies to rub together - If someone hasn't got two pennies to rub together, they are very poor indeed.
Pennies on the dollar - (USA) If something is pennies on the dollar, it's much cheaper than it cost originally.
Penny ante - (USA) Something that is very unimportant is penny ante.
Penny pincher - A penny pincher is a mean person or who is very frugal.
Penny wise, pound foolish - Someone who is penny wise, pound foolish can be very careful or mean with small amounts of money, yet wasteful and extravagant with large sums.
Spend a penny - (UK) This is a euphemistic idiom meaning to go to the toilet.
Ten a penny - (UK) If something is ten a penny, it is very common. ("Two a penny" is also used.)
Turn up like a bad penny - If someone turns up like a bad penny, they go somewhere where they are not wanted.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. peni, AS. penig, pening, pending,; akin to D. penning, OHG. pfenning, pfenting, G. pfennig, Icel. penningr,; of uncertain origin
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. penig, oldest form pending, where pend=Eng. pawn, Ger. pfand, Dut. pand, a pledge, all which are from L. pannus, a rag, a piece of cloth.


In literature:

He then deposited his half-penny, and moved on.
"A Window in Thrums" by J. M. Barrie
I suppose you get one-and- twopenny and pocket the odd penny!
"My Friend Smith" by Talbot Baines Reed
He had never been seen to spend a penny, unless it was to save twopence.
"The Cock-House at Fellsgarth" by Talbot Baines Reed
They shall have a penny a day, What a pity they cannot work faster!
"Boycotted" by Talbot Baines Reed
Pennie herself hardly knew what to think about the success of her plan.
"Penelope and the Others" by Amy Walton
But Pennie never said she had wings.
"The Hawthorns" by Amy Walton
But on this paper at a penny per copy he made no money.
"Pushing to the Front" by Orison Swett Marden
Mass Jack-Jack Penny-Penny, one way find Mass Joe.
"Bunyip Land" by George Manville Fenn
The lot for a penny-three-farthings.
"April's Lady" by Margaret Wolfe Hungerford
In for a penny in for a pound.
"The Youngest Girl in the Fifth" by Angela Brazil

In poetry:

"Before I give you one penny, sweetheart,
Pray tell me where you were born."--
"At Islington, kind sir," said she,
"Where I have had many a scorn."--
"The Bailiff's Daughter Of Islington" by Henry Morley
Though poor they be, and very many,
Their care and keeping's in our hands,
The rich man's pound, the poor man's penny,
If not withheld when need demands.
"Admonition" by James Madison Bell
"The plan seemed fair: I gave him cash,
Nay, every penny I could raise.
My wife e'er cried, `'Tis rash, 'tis rash:'
How could I know the stock-thief's ways?
"The Hard Times In Elfland [A Story of Christmas Eve]" by Sidney Lanier
And I don't think this is any
Kind of ending to a perfect crime.
I've got a hundred thousand dollars worth of pennies,
And I'm spendin' it a penny at a time!
"100,000 Pennies" by Shel Silverstein
"Oh, youths," said he, "I grieve to find
The course of life you've been and hit on -
Sit down," said he, "and never mind
The pennies for the chairs you sit on.
"Sir Macklin" by William Schwenck Gilbert
I've got a hundred thousand dollars worth of pennies,
Not a solitary dollar or a dime,
And I don't believe there's many,
Rich men with a problem like mine.
"100,000 Pennies" by Shel Silverstein

In news:

Re "Penny-pinchers to blame" (Letters, Nov 16): A few words in support of Walmart.
In the 1936 film "Pennies From Heaven," Edith Fellows played her most famous role, Patsy, a waif befriended by Bing Crosby.
Loving mother of Penny (Richard) McDonald of Troy, Mich. Richard W (Barbara) Feak of Port St Lucie, Fla.
Congrats are in order for Lacuna Coil co-vocalist Andrea Ferro , who got married over the weekend to his longtime love, Paola Penny Gigliotti.
TV star Bolt is loving and protective of Penny, who's just acting, too.
WASHINGTON (AP)- It'll cost another penny to mail a letter next year.
No More Pennies album artwork (CP).
The Royal Canadian Mint has backed down on its dispute with a Nova Scotia folksinger over his upcoming album's depiction of the penny.
Last April, I wrote about the allegations made about misstatements found in Greg Mortenson's books and allegations about misuse of funds from his charities, both Central Asia Institute (CAI) and Pennies for Peace.
OnLive's sale to a venture capital firm was for pennies on the dollar, leaving former employees and investors holding the bag.
Are you tired of pinching your pennies.
Penny Bender Fuchs , Celebrated Maryland Professor, Inspired Young Journalists.
Ginnifer Goodwin's stylist Penny Lovell recommends letting the color of your dress be the focus.
An ad against Proposition 30 says "not a penny guaranteed to the classroom," but the constitution says education must receive a large share of new tax dollars.
Charles Imwalle is suing for a pretty penny.

In science:

We also claim that this game never goes into state (1, 0). (Together, this implies that the final state consists of more than one penny, which means that the responder wins).
A simple solution to Ulam's liar game with one lie
Penny 1996; Howarth et al. 1997) and/or re fined /estimated from the fitting process when necessary.
Analysis of Galactic late-type O dwarfs: more constraints on the weak wind problem
We consider a repeated Matching Pennies game in which players have limited access to randomness.
Repeated Matching Pennies with Limited Randomness
We focus on a simple two player zero-sum game that captures this: Matching Pennies (Figure 1).
Repeated Matching Pennies with Limited Randomness
Figure 1: The payoff bimatrix for the Matching Pennies game.
Repeated Matching Pennies with Limited Randomness