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See also: Farthing




From Middle English ferthing, from Old English feorðing (a quarter), from feorða (fourth), probably influenced by Old Norse fiórðungr.



farthing (plural farthings)

  1. (historical) Former British unit of currency worth one-quarter of an old penny.
    • 1883, Howard Pyle, The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood Chapter V
      "Nay, Heaven forbid, indeed," quoth Robin, "that I should take from such as thee, jolly fellow! Not so much as one farthing would I take from thee, for I love a fair Saxon face like thine right well—more especially when it cometh from Locksley Town, and most especially when the man that owneth it is to marry a bonny lass on Thursday next. But come, tell me for what price thou wilt sell me all of thy meat and thy horse and cart."
    • 1895, Parliament of Western Australia, Parliamentary Debates, Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly VIII, page 163:
      We must keep them to the fact that the duty is one and three quarter farthings, or nearly a half-penny in the pound and no more, and any one who tries to work it out any other way is not acting fairly in the matter.
    • 1908, W[illiam] B[lair] M[orton] Ferguson, Zollenstein, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 29686887 , chapter II:
      I had never defrauded a man of a farthing, nor called him knave behind his back. But now the last rag that covered my nakedness had been torn from me. I was branded a blackleg, card-sharper, and murderer.

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