One pound coin £1

Sterling one pound – a brief history

Pound coin history

A pound coin originally weighed one troy pound of sterling silver. This gave the currency the name ‘pound sterling’ (sterling silver plus the pound). Sterling silver is a mixed metal made up of at least 92.5% real silver.

240 pence in one ‘old’ pound

One pound sterling was originally divided into 240 sterling pence. This was because there were 240 penny-weights in a troy pound. 

Pound coins

So, a single one pound coin weighed one troy pound and a single 1 penny coin weighed one penny weight. Until decimalisation in 1971 there were 240 pennies in the ‘old’ pound.

l s d (£ s d)

The Latin word for pound is libra. The £ is a stylised writing of the letter L, a short way of writing libra. The ‘s’ was shilling and the ‘d’ was pence and in Latin ‘d’ denarious translated to penny.

Pound, shillings and pence in old ‘money’ was written, £ s d – (l s d).

Libra coincidence?

Facebook has named its ‘planned’ digital currency ‘Libra’. Maybe the UK should have its own digital currency and name it Libra too? After all, the name ‘Libra’ does mean pound.

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