Dollar Bill Nicknames

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Money roll greenbackThe dollar bill has come a long way. Over the centuries, it has changed hands trillions of times, owned, sold and traded by millions of people, from all walks of life, and travelled the whole world x number of times over. So its no wonder that the dollar bill today has adopted quite a number of nicknames and colloquialisms along its many journeys.

One of the most famous nicknames that the dollar bill has been tagged with is buck. This reference is said to have originated from the fur trade back in the 18th century. Another nickname commonly used until today when referring to the dollar bill is greenback. The name was exclusively applied to the dollar bill during the creation of the Demand Note dollar in the 19th century. Its reference is said to be due to the black and green printing on the back side of the dollar bill, hence greenback! Accredited to Abraham Lincoln, the greenback was used to finance the cost of the American Civil War, up north.

K, is a suffix used to describe the multiple of a thousand dollars. For example, instead of saying eight thousand dollars, one would simply say $8K instead. K, is said to have originated from the first letter of the word Kilo, which is a metric system terminology used to indicate a thousand units. The word, grand, is also another colloquialism frequently used when referring to a multiple of a thousand dollars. People sometimes shorten this designation to the letter, G. For example, 50G would mean fifty thousand dollars. Dollar bills are often referred to by their assigned denominations as well, such as five or ten.

The one dollar bill is sometimes referred to as a “single”, and the two dollar bill a “tom” or a “deuce”. Five dollar bills are sometimes referred to as a “fiver” or “fin”, and even a “five-spot”, whereas the ten dollar bill has been called a “Hamilton”, referring to the portrait of Alexander Hamilton, a “ten-spot”, or a “sawbuck”.

The twenty dollar bill has been given nicknames such as “Jackson,” a “twenty-banger,” a “twomp,” and a “double sawbuck”. Apart from the nickname fifty, the fifty dollar bill has also been referred to as a “half C,” a “half century,” and a “half yard”. A “Benjamin,” a “Benjie,” a “Frank”, a C-note, a Century Note, a “bill”, a “bigface” and even a “large”, are all nicknames given to the one hundred dollar bill.

The dollar bill has also been referred to fondly in different languages. Puerto Ricans and Mexicans living in the US would refer to the dollar bill as peso. Piastre, which is a French word for a unit of currency, is also another moniker used to describe the dollar bill. Mexicans would sometimes refer to the dollar bill as “en inglés” when paying for things with the currency. Coco, another nickname for the dollar bill in Peru, is a pet name given to the portrait of George Washington on the one dollar bill.

Whatever you may call the dollar bill, it is safe to say that it has such a strong influence and an inseparable attachment in our lives that we begin making it our own by giving it labels we identify most closely with. Are there any other nicknames that you’ve heard the dollar bill being called? Please share them with us here.

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One Response to “Dollar Bill Nicknames”

  1. Alby Says:

    My friends and I would also dramatically call the one hundred dollar bill, “Big One”. For example “Ten Big Ones” would mean a thousand dollars. We also fondly call a one dollar bill “A Bone” or “Smackeroo”. For instance, sixteen bones, or ,sixteen smakeroos, would mean $16 :)

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