Shave and a haircut, two-bits...  

(Neil M)
56 posts
4/23/2005 7:04 pm

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm

Shave and a haircut, two-bits...

Has anyone else wondered what this was about? I didn't even know that two-bits was the equivelant of twenty five cents until I looked it up tonight. Here's what I found out....


two bits

If you have two bits, then you have a quarter (the US coin, worth
twenty-five cents). Does that mean one bit is twelve and a half

The oldest known use of the word "bit" for a coin goes back to Great
Britain in the seventeenth century, when any coin could be called a
"bit." A three-cent coin could be called a "threepenny bit" [THRUH-
puh-nee bit].

According to one story, the same slang migrated to the southwestern
US, where Mexican coins were commonly used as currency. There, the
Mexican real [ray-AHL] worth about twelve and a half cents, was called
a "bit." When the US quarter came out, it was worth about two reals,
or two bits.

Another story is that the Spanish dollar coin, worth about the same as
one US dollar, was actually cut into pieces to make change. This was
the origin of the term "pieces of eight," and of course two of those
pieces, or "two bits," would be worth one quarter of a dollar.
Copyright (c) 1999, The Learning Kingdom, Inc.

What, you may ask, does this have to do with sex? Well my friends.. absolutely nothing! I was just wanting to 'share'.. LOL

rm_RoamingTom 70M

4/26/2005 3:47 am

Here's some more useless information to bring anyone interested more up to date. I was born in New Zealand at the end of W.W.II in 1945 and still remember our previous currency which mirrored the English and was refered to as Pounds, Shillings & Pence. 12 pennies to a shilling, 20 shillings to the pound, the smallest coin being a half penny or "Hape-ny followed by a penny, both of these coins being copper and followed by the silver thruh-punee bit, sixpence was also a silver coin, two sixpence equaled one shilling, the two shilling coin was a florin commonly refered to as two bob. The next denomination was called a half crown or two and six (2 shillings and 6d) d was how you signified pence,(I believe this originated from the ancient Roman "denarii") in the '50s I could get in to a movie for 9d, get an Ice-Cream for 4d and "King size" coke for 7d and still be left with more than half of my "five bob" weekly allowance. I don't belive there ever was a five shilling piece but I do remember the "10 bob" note which on July 10th 1969, when the currency was decimalised, became $1-00 and the Pound became $2-00, 6d became 5 cents, 1s became 10 cents. I those early days we had a 1 cent, 2c, 5c and 10c coins and gained an extra silver coin worth 50cents, three penny coin was dumped and the 10shilling and Pound notes were replaced by gold coins (not pure gold ofcourse) these days the 1 and 2 cent coins have gone and we have a $5-00 note $10, $20, $50 and $100 notes are all in use, a coke or pepsi will cost you nothing less than $2-50 If you go to the right dairy you can get an Ice-cream for 2 bucks although McDonalds does a "soft serve cone" for 50c, a Sundae for $1-50 but Burgers start at $2 or $3-95 for 1/4 pounder combo and you would be lucky to find your way in to a movie for under $15-00 Gasoline has gone over $1-20 a litre (4-1/2 litres to the gallon) my first car I could fill for less than 3 bob, but the thing I try, very hard, not to remember, when I go the supermarket and pay over $3-00 for 2litres of milk in a plastic container, is the three year old who would go to tne mailbox around 1948 and return to the house with a Quart bottle (two pints, glass bottle) delivered fresh by the milkman for 4 pence, It brings a real meaning to that oft coined phrase "The good old days".

(Neil M)

4/26/2005 4:35 am

Thanks for the info Tom! Useless, maybe, but it does show just how the economy sneaks up on us. It's also good info for when playing Trivia.. here's a few that ya may or may not know....

The $3 bill actually existed in US currency. It was a confedorate Note, and had the picture of 'St. Nicholas' aka... Santa Clause on it. Up until a decade ago, the US also had in circulation both the $10,000 and $1,000 bills, though both have been taken out of circulation also. Not sure why, coz that $1,000 bill is what's needed to fill up the car now a days. Oh yea.. also.. STILL being made, is the $100,000 bill! You may never find one though, as it is for exclusive use of the treasury department.

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