Twopence, threepence, sixpence, shilling

Lucretia

Senior Member
Russian
Hello,
They were all coins, weren’t they? I don’t know how to use articles with them.
1. The boy got a shilling a day.
2. He was paid a sixpence (a twopence, a threepence) a night. ???
Thank you.
 
  • kaleidoscope

    Member
    UK English
    Hi,
    Those coins were a bit before my time :D, but I can tell you that you wouldn't normally use an article with any of them, apart from "shilling".

    So:
    1. The boy got a shilling a day. :tick:
    2. He was paid a sixpence (a twopence, a threepence) a night :cross:
    2a. He was paid a sixpence (a twopence, a threepence) a night :tick:

    Although it would be fine to say: "He gave me a sixpence/twopence/threepence piece", when you're referring to the actual coin, rather than its value.

    Just to add that you may also see "twopence" written as "tuppence", and "threepence" as "thruppence".
     

    Brioche

    Senior Member
    Australia English
    With current decimal coins, people say a two pee, or a two-pee coin, or a 2 pence coin.- and so on.

    If you are talking about old, pre-decimal coins, you should say three-penny piece/coin/bit, and six-penny piece/coin/bit.

    At various times in British history there were 2 penny pieces and four-penny pieces, even one-and-a-half penny pieces.
     

    Spira

    Banned
    UK English
    With current decimal coins, people say a two pee, or a two-pee coin, or a 2 pence coin.- and so on.

    If you are talking about old, pre-decimal coins, you should say three-penny piece/coin/bit, and six-penny piece/coin/bit.


    Actually, at the time they only said a threpenny bit, never -piece or -coin
    And only a sixpence, never piece/coin/bit
     

    shawnee

    Senior Member
    English - Australian
    'Thrupence,' (otherwise known as a thrupenny bit), 'sixpence' and 'a shilling' in my experience of the times.
     

    Spira

    Banned
    UK English
    Yes, 'Thrupence,' or 'Threpence' was the amount, and thrupenny bit or threpenny bit the coin.
    As a child I heard both, and varied between the two.

    Sixpence was the amount, a sixpence the coin

    A shilling was both the amount and the coin.
     

    Spira

    Banned
    UK English
    Well, yes it could be pronounced like that, and frequently was. Nevertheless, I think my mother who was a stickler on pronunciation, would have corrected me if I had pronounced it like that, telling me not to swallow a syllable.
     

    George French

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    Well, yes it could be pronounced like that, and frequently was. Nevertheless, I think my mother who was a stickler on pronunciation, would have corrected me if I had pronounced it like that, telling me not to swallow a syllable.
    That's what mothers are for. :)

    GF..
     
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