American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Coined money; coin.
- idiom. in specie In coin.
- idiom. in specie In a similar manner; in kind: repaid the offense in specie.
- idiom. in specie Law In the same kind or shape; as specified.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. As a Latin noun, used in the phrase in specie: In kind.
- n. In coin. See def. 2. Hence, as an English noun
- n. Coin; metallic money; a medium of exchange consisting of gold or silver (the precious metals) coined by sovereign authority in pieces of various standard weights and values, and of minor coins of copper, bronze, or some other cheap or base metal: often used attributively. The earliest coinage of specie is attributed to the Lydians, about the eighth century b. c. Previously, and long afterward in many countries, pieces of silver and gold (the latter only to a small extent) were passed by weight in payments, as lumps of silver are still in China. The use of specie as a measure of price is based upon the intrinsic value of the precious metals as commodities, which has diminished immensely since ancient times, but is comparatively stable for long periods under normal circumstances. In modern civilized communities specie or bullion is largely used by banks as a basis or security for circulating notes (bank-notes) representing it. In times of great financial disturbance this security sometimes becomes inadequate from depletion or through excessive issues of notes, and a general suspension of specie payments takes place, followed by great depreciation of the paper money. General suspensions of specie payments occurred in the United States in 1837, 1857, and 1861, the last, due to the civil war, continuing till 1879. Specie payments by British banks were suspended by law, in consequence of the French wars, from 1797 to 1823, but were actually resumed by the Bank of England in 1821. Similar interruptions of solvency have occurred in the other European countries, resulting in Austria and Russia in an apparently permanent substitution of depreciated paper money for specie in ordinary use and reckoning.
- n. Type or kind, in various uses of the phrase in specie.
- n. Money, especially in the form of coins made from precious metal, that has an intrinsic value; coinage.
- n. Singular form of species.
GNU Webster's 1913
- abl. of L.
speciessort, kind. Used in the phrase in specie, that is, in sort, in kind, in (its own) form.
- n. Coin; hard money.
- n. coins collectively
- back-formation from species (plural), influenced by the original Latin 'type, form'. (Wiktionary)
- From (in) specie, (in) the actual form, from Latin (in) speciē, (in) kind, ablative of speciēs; see species. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The act establishing the independent treasury in 1846, was drawn by me, avowedly as a 'specie receiving and _specie circulating_' institution, and to restrain excessive issues by the banks; but it is impossible now to carry that system into practical execution.”
“_sub specie æternitatis_, but _sub specie_ the reign of Queen Victoria.”
“He calculates the numeraire, or what we call specie, then actually existing in France, at about eighty-eight millions of the same English money.”
“Rent, which could be paid in specie or livestock, was payable either at the landdrost or the Castle at the Cape. 25 Farmers in outlying areas often paid several years at once, presumably due in part to the long journey from their farms to the seats of colonial authority.”
“When a cashier at the bank realizes that there is a shortage of funds, he suggests that the bank directors withdraw their personal claims to allow working customers to be paid in specie, but he is overruled so the directors do not have to sacrifice any of their own funds. 81 Likewise, Things as They Will Be, Or, All Barkers Are Not”
“Forced to pay for land in specie, speculators and capitalists turned their investment attention elsewhere, toward goods which they could buy on credit or with paper money. 99”
“Sanety, that endangered specie is finally creeping into congress, cut the porc, reestablish the tax on the rich.”
“Congress, prior to its adjournment, empowered President Davis to seize the specie in the banks for supplies, and also empowered the Secretary of the Treasury to procure specie from the different States upon terms agreed upon with the State authorities.”
“Washington, had resolved that President Lincoln's amnesty proclamation was unconstitutional, and that the army and navy ought to be paid in specie or its equivalent.”
“The big ship brings 500 passengers, 56,000 dols. in specie, and upwards of 6000 tons of cargo — consisting principally of wheat, corn, and provisions.”
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