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Biscuit Epsiode

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suze
1018405.  Tue Aug 27, 2013 5:22 pm Reply with quote

Parliament was first asked to vote on the idea as early as 1824, but on that occasion rejected the notion completely. Three times more over the next century the idea was raised, but never came anywhere very close to being adopted.

Then in 1961, the Conservative government of Harold McMillan commissioned some further research into the question. The report recommended decimalization, but this wasn't the answer that McMillan wanted and so he did nothing about it. But after a change of government in 1964, Labour PM Harold Wilson declared that it was going to happen.

It was two years before a Bill was introduced and that Bill took three years to get through Parliament because the Conservatives opposed it, but it was finally passed in 1969 and decimal currency became a reality two years later.

 
nitwit02
1018418.  Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:15 pm Reply with quote

Lots of wallowing in nostalgia for me, thanks to chrisboote.
By the way, 10 bob was known as 'half a knicker'. Also, half a crown was often called, half a dollar, as at one time, it had the same value as 50 cents.

 
chrisboote
1018423.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:13 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
But after a change of government in 1964, Labour PM Harold Wilson declared that it was going to happen.

Almost a year after An Unearthly Child ... 8-)

 
dr.bob
1018436.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:32 am Reply with quote

chrisboote wrote:
2 bits = 25c is odd to most minds


Type "two bits" into google and you get "About 95,000,000 results"

Clearly not that unknown :)

The first result, by the way, is this wikipedia page

 
chrisboote
1018438.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:45 am Reply with quote

dr.bob wrote:
chrisboote wrote:
2 bits = 25c is odd to most minds


Type "two bits" into google and you get "About 95,000,000 results"

Clearly not that unknown :)

The first result, by the way, is this wikipedia page


Oh, I agree that many (if not most) USians know it, as do a large number of non-USians, I just think that having (2 of something = an odd number) is odd to most people who do know it

 
suze
1018458.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 6:57 am Reply with quote

nitwit02 wrote:
By the way, 10 bob was known as 'half a knicker'.


And no one knows why.

The use of (k)nicker for a pound dates back to about 1900, but the best that the usual sources can do is to suggest that it may be horse racing slang.

Very speculatively, it's been noted that at this time USians sometimes referred to a $5 bill as a nickel (by analogy with the 5c coin, which is rather more often referred to as a nickel). And at the time of which we're speaking, $5 was approximately equivalent to one pound. This isn't a very satisfactory explanation though, and seems unlikely to be correct.

Some sources on slang allege that the 2 coin is commonly known as a pair of knickers. A small prize for anyone who's ever actually heard this.

 
PDR
1018460.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:01 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:

Some sources on slang allege that the 2 coin is commonly known as a pair of knickers. A small prize for anyone who's ever actually heard this.


I could believe that this usage originated in Britains northern cities in the late 80s, where 2 was a reasonable estimate of the cost of getting access to the contents of a pair of knickers...

PDR

 
Bondee
1018531.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:46 pm Reply with quote

I once managed to convince a workmate that she could pop the middle bit out of a 2 coin and use each separate piece as a 1 coin.

 
'yorz
1018533.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:56 pm Reply with quote

*groan* honest

 
Bondee
1018540.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:25 pm Reply with quote

Yep. She spent at least 20 minutes trying to figure out how to separate them.

 
swot
1018542.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:28 pm Reply with quote

You are mean :)

 
nitwit02
1018572.  Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:18 pm Reply with quote

Quote:

Some sources on slang allege that the 2 coin is commonly known as a pair of knickers. A small prize for anyone who's ever actually heard this.





Never heard it, but I like it.

 
djgordy
1018581.  Thu Aug 29, 2013 2:19 am Reply with quote

Who calls a pound a "knicker" these days?

 
Jenny
1018657.  Thu Aug 29, 2013 10:47 am Reply with quote

I always thought of it as being a Cockney word, though I don't think it's rhyming slang.

 
chrisboote
1018727.  Fri Aug 30, 2013 2:22 am Reply with quote

I'm FAIRLY sure that 'half a knicker' for ten bob was because 'a knicker' was a pound
Why? Well, nobody knows
But the most likely explanation is horseracing slang; a nicker originally being a losing bet (from ~1850) - nicker = neigh = nay

The Tote Museum quotes 1871 as the first use of 'nicker' being a pound, claiming that "all racecourse bets were changed in that year to be a minimum of 1", but this seems incredibly expensive to me - at a time when a day trip to Epsom Races, including entrance fee, was a shilling - and makes me think that they have it wrong

 

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