• IPA: /ˈpɛ.ni/
  • (in compounds like "twopenny", dated) IPA: /pəni/

penny (plural pennies)

  1. (historical) In the United Kingdom and Ireland, a copper coin worth frac 240 of a pound sterling or Irish pound before decimalisation. Abbreviation: d.
    • 1913, Mrs. [Marie] Belloc Lowndes, chapter I, in The Lodger, London: Methuen, OCLC 7780546 ↗; republished in Novels of Mystery: The Lodger; The Story of Ivy; What Really Happened, New York, N.Y.: Longmans, Green and Co., […], [1933], OCLC 2666860 ↗, page 0056 ↗:
      Thanks to that penny he had just spent so recklessly [on a newspaper] he would pass a happy hour, taken, for once, out of his anxious, despondent, miserable self. It irritated him shrewdly to know that these moments of respite from carking care would not be shared with his poor wife, with careworn, troubled Ellen.
  2. In the United Kingdom, a copper coin worth frac 100 of a pound sterling. Abbreviation: p.
  3. (historical) In Ireland, a coin worth frac 100 of an Irish pound before the introduction of the euro. Abbreviation: p.
  4. In the US and Canada, a one-cent coin, worth frac 100 of a dollar. Abbreviation: ¢.
  5. In various countries, a small-denomination copper or brass coin.
  6. A unit of nail size, said to be either the cost per 100 nails, or the number of nails per penny. Abbreviation: d.
  7. Money in general.
    to turn an honest penny
    • c. 1596, William Shakespeare, “The Life and Death of King Iohn”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene ii]:
      What penny hath Rome borne, / What men provided, what munition sent?
  • (frac 240 of a pound sterling) old penny
  • (frac 100 of a pound sterling) new penny (old-fashioned)
  • (one-cent coin) cent
Translations Translations Verb

penny (pennies, present participle pennying; past and past participle pennied)

  1. (slang) To jam a door shut by inserting pennies between the doorframe and the door.
    Zach and Ben had only been at college for a week when their door was pennied by the girls down the hall.
  2. (electronics) To circumvent the tripping of an electrical circuit breaker by the dangerous practice of inserting a coin in place of a fuse in a fuse socket.

Pronunciation Proper noun
  1. A diminutive of the female given name Penelope.
  2. Surname

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