Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A coin originally worth six pennies Scots, and later three; held equivalent to an English halfpenny.
  • n. A copper; a small amount of money.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A halfpenny.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A Scotch billon coin, weighing about 29 grains troy, first issued in 1542 by James V. of Scotland, and worth at that time 1½d. Scotch.
  • n. plural Money; cash.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an old Scottish coin of little value

Etymologies

From Scots bawbee. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • If it is something very stingy or very liberal, all Thrums knows of it within a few hours; indeed, this holds good of all the churches, especially perhaps of the Free one, which has been called the bawbee kirk, because so many halfpennies find their way into the plate.

    Auld Licht Idylls

  • Here then, plain upon this apparent arbitrarily levised trifle, this petty provincial money-token, this poor bawbee, that is, this coin not only of the very humblest order, but proverbially sordid at that, we find clearly set down, long generations ago, the whole [Page: 99] four-fold analysis and synthesis of civic life we have been above labouring for.

    Civics: as Applied Sociology

  • a few hours; indeed, this holds good of all the churches, especially perhaps of the Free one, which has been called the bawbee kirk, because so many halfpennies find their way into the plate.

    Auld Licht Idyls

  • Sandy had in his pocket two coins -- a "bawbee", as the Scotch call it, a copper, and a gold sovereign.

    The British Commonwealth In a Bewildered World

  • So before me lies an old "bawbee" of my own home city.

    Civics: as Applied Sociology

  • But they may cash his bills that will; I ken ane that will never advance a bawbee on ony paper that has John Mowbray either on the back or front of it.

    Saint Ronan's Well

  • “To show you the contrary,” said the Duke, “I will fill my box out of this canister without paying you a bawbee;” and again desiring to be remembered to Jeanie, with his good wishes for her safe journey, he departed, leaving Mrs. Glass uplifted in heart and in countenance, the proudest and happiest of tobacco and snuff dealers.

    The Heart of Mid-Lothian

  • “If I gie ye a bawbee,” said he to an urchin of about ten years old, with a fragment of a tattered plaid about him, “will you understand Sassenach?”

    Rob Roy

  • I put a gold sovereign on the plate in mistake for a bawbee.

    The British Commonwealth In a Bewildered World

  • [863] A _bawbee_, the vulgar name for a halfpenny.

    The Works of John Knox, Vol. 1 (of 6)

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  • The Scotsman of legend is brawny;
    His liquor he takes neat and tawny;
    His principal gift
    Is a talent for thrift -
    His sporran shuts tight on a bawbee.

    November 23, 2014

  • "There was a violent upheaval under his arm, followed by a wail from Jemmy. Roger glanced down.

    'Oh, did ye drop your bawbee? Where's it gone, then?' He hoicked Jemmy up onto his shoulder like a bundle of laundry and squatted down, poking at the ground in search of the watch chain, which Jemmy had evidently hurled into the darkness."
    —Diana Gabaldon, The Fiery Cross (NY: Bantam Dell, 2001), 215

    January 19, 2010

  • A silver coin worth 6 Scots pennies; a halfpenny; a small or trifling amount of money.

    December 26, 2007