Does anyone know where the expression "two bit" meaning a quarter comes from?

4 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    In the early days of the US, there was not enough US coinage to go around. Foreign coins were used, one of the most common being the Spanish Real (Spanish dollar), equal to $1US. To get small change, this coin was often cut into 8 pieces like a pizza. Cutting into 10 would fit the US system better, but there was no easy way to get 10 equal pieces - but easy to cut into fourths and then eighths.

    Each 1/8 of a Spanish dollar was called a bit and was equal to 12-1/2 cents. Two of them equaled 25 cents - or a quarter.

    So two bits has been a quarter since the early days of the US.

  • 4 years ago

    Two Bits Definition

  • 1 decade ago

    It's a saying from the 1930's. "Shave and a haircut two bits" .

    Earlier it was of Spanish origin. They had coins called bits and two bits were 25 cents.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    a "bit" was a coin, and two of them equaled 25 cents. hence two bits is one quarter.

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