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All Change: Decimalisation




















These old accounts provide a reminder of the need to use three columns of figures for £sd calculations

All Change: Decimalisation

All Change: Decimalisation

...this beautiful and venerable monetary complex

Anthony Burgess, You’ve Had Your Time (1990)

In the early 1960s Britain still used a currency system of twelve pennies to the shilling and twenty shillings to the pound. It was a system whose origins stretched back to Anglo-Saxon times and beyond, and which besides its enduring practical function of oiling the wheels of daily commerce had enriched the very language and literature of the nation. Tanners and bobs, ha’pennies and threepenny bits, were instantly recognisable descriptions, and the romance of the coinage was enhanced by the presence of coins of Queen Victoria, some of them 100 years old. Long familiarity had inevitably generated a deep-rooted affection: a beautiful and venerable currency, certainly; cherished, too; but undoubtedly baffling to those not born to its complexities.

1849 florin (obv&rev)