[LMB] OT: word notes

Dan Tilque dtilque at nwlink.com
Fri, 6 Dec 2002 17:38:04 -0800


Anton Sherwood performed an arpeggio on a keyboard and produced:

>> From: "Mark A. Mandel" <mamandel at Filker.Org>
>> Subject: Re: [LMB] FILK: Winterfair is coming
>>
>> Millifennigs, no "p". And I have to wonder whether Lois
>> confused "milli-" with "kilo-" or "mega-". Historically, in
>> under conditions of hyperinflation, when it takes a
>> wheelbarrow load of banknotes to buy a loaf of bread,
>> governments issue notes in larger and larger denominations,
>> not smaller ones.
>
> Maybe it's not a Metric prefix; that and US coin are the only
> contexts I know of where <mill-> means `thousandth part'
> rather than `thousands'. Once upon a time maybe there was a
> coin called "mille fenniga" which came to be the smallest in
> use, and its name collapsed into one word.

You guys apparently missed my comment on this in a different
post, so I'll repeat it here:

And the spelling is millifenig. No P, single N. As for whether it
was derived from milli- + pfennig, Doylist answer: yes; Watsonian
answer: no.

As far as mill- = 1/1000, there used to be a unit of currency
called the millieme, which was a thousandth of a franc, I think.
Or a thousandth of something, anyway. Hmm, M-W says the unit is
used in Egypt and Sudan as a thousandth of a pound. I think it
used to be used in France as well, but I could be wrong.

--
Dan Tilque