Showing posts with label Pound. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pound. Show all posts

Mar 21, 2014

Wordology, Lb

Did you ever wonder why we use the Lb abbreviation for pound? Lb is an abbreviation of the Latin word libra. The primary meaning of libra was balance or scales (as in the astrological sign), but it also stood for the ancient Roman unit of measure libra pondo, meaning “a pound by weight.” The word “pound” in English from the pondo part of the libra pondo but the abbreviation comes from the libra. The libra is also why the symbol for the British pound is £, an L with a line through it. The Italian lira also used that symbol (with two lines through it), the word “lira” itself being a shortened version of libra.

“Ounce” is related to the Latin uncia, the name for both the Roman ounce and inch units of measurement. The word came into English from Anglo-Norman French, where it was unce or ounce, but the abbreviation was borrowed from Medieval Italian, where the word was onza. These days the Italian word is oncia, and the area once covered by the Roman Empire has long since switched to the metric system.

Jul 2, 2010

A Brief History of The Dollar

The term 'dollar' has been around for thousands of years. Common history says it comes from the the Czech name Joachimsthaler. Thaler is a shortened form of the term. It was pronounced like 'taller'. Talers were around as recently as the 1960s in Hungary, Bohemia, and other German States.

Dalers were used in the Scandinavian countries from the 1500s until the 1920s.

The English pronunciation 'dollar' was also used for Spanish Pesos and Portuguese pieces of eight and a few other European currencies.

The US minted its first dollar in 1792. Currently, an average paper US dollar lasts 21 months before it wears out.

Canada officially changed to the (Canadian) dollar in 1853, but they were minted in Britain until 1908. Australia and New Zealand changed to the (Australian and New Zealand) dollars, from the Pound, in the 1960s. Many other countries use a dollar as the official currency, but not all dollars are US dollars and not all are tied to the US dollar for their value.

In January 2010, Zimbabwe issued a $100 trillion note, making the note the highest denomination in the world.

Britain officially changed to the decimal system and divided the pound into 100 pennies in 1971.  Now you know why dollars make sense. . . or cents. Speaking of cents, the Lincoln penny has been around for 101 years.