History of the Penny Nail

History, Traditions
on June 13, 2011
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The term penny nail originated in medieval times and is believed to describe the number of English pennies required to purchase 100 nails.

In the 15th century, 100 six-penny nails cost sixpence, 100 eight-penny nails cost eightpence, and so on, so that the larger the number, the longer the nail. Today, the term is used as a measurement of the length of a nail sold for wood applications.

Nails are designated by their penny size, using a number and the letter d (6d, 8d, etc.). The letter d is an abbreviation for denarius, a Roman coin similar to a penny.

Found in: History, Traditions
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