Comments on How many strokes on the dollar sign?

Anonymous Coward #1007 (Bear) (2004-05-28T19:16:31Z)

Where did the dollar sign come from?

It is only appropriate that an Irish immigrant to the United States be the one credited with originating the dollar sign. Oliver Pollock sailed the high seas at the age of twenty-three, and settled in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. This young entrepreneur rapidly established himself as a wealthy and influential West Indies trader.

Pollock moved his operation to Louisiana, where he amassed even more wealth as a trader, and as a plantation owner. His success enabled him to provide supplies to the Patriots’ cause in the Revolutionary War, and to maintain close contact and a degree of influence with Congress. Pollock’s success allowed him easily to purchase military supplies to support "the cause," as the Spanish Empire had an outpost in New Orleans, Louisiana. In his dealings with the Spaniards, Pollock used their currency, the peso.

In true Spanish tradition, Pollock used an abbreviation for pesos, yet his penmanship made the abbreviation appear to be the transposition of the letters "p" and "s."

Prior to 1775, the fledgling nations monetary system was in disarray, and needed to be revamped. By 1775, Congress decided to rectify the situation by backing all of its legal tender with the most commonly circulated coins that were, coincidentally, Spanish coins minted in the New World. Americans then began trading with "Spanish milled dollars," later termed "dollars," as Americans shed the "pounds" that were the vestiges of British rule.

Congressman Robert Morris, to whom Pollock addressed his billing records, perpetuated the use of the dollar sign, and was the first high government official to give his blessing to the "s" with the two lines through it.

The appearance of the dollar sign in print, in a 1797 book by Chauncey Lee, signified the acceptance of the dollar as a purely American symbol, much as is the bald eagle. And, no, the dollar sign formed by placing the letter "U" over the letter "S" is not an abbreviation for Uncle Sam, as some have suggested!

Anonymous Coward #992 (Anonymous Hugues) (2004-05-25T10:04:39Z)

Pour aller dans le sens de l'intervention précédente, on m'avait raconté plusieurs fois que les deux traits verticaux symbolisaient les colonnes d'Hercule.

Maintenant, qu'est-ce que les colonnes d'Hercule viennent faire dans cette histoire, hein, me direz-vous… Si ça se trouve, tout ça n'est qu'une "légende urbaine".

Anonymous Coward #953 (nhkprs) (2004-05-19T14:48:31Z)

Vous vous interrogez sur le nombre de barres sans d'abord expliquer l'origine du S ? Amusant !
Je connaissais une autre explication :
le S (avec deux barres, nous verrons ce point-ci après) signifie Spanish pillar dollar : sur les pièces de l'époque étaient gravés deux piliers verticaux
(voir une image ici : , par exemple).

Damien (2004-05-18T16:43:00Z)

Voir le fil suivant issu de la liste Typographie :
et notamment :
qui cite par exemple :

Anonymous Coward #949 (Xavier) (2004-05-18T08:06:52Z)

A ce sujet, est sorti très récemment le livre "Fontes et codages" de Yannis Haralambous aux éditions O'Reilly. Très bon pour toute personne s'intéressant au sujet.
Ainsi, voici le paragraphe à propos de "¤" :
"C'est les italiens qui ont proposé ce signe pour remplacer le dollar dans certaines versions localisées et <<politiquement correctes>> d'ASCII. L'auteur ne l'a jamais vu utilisé dans un texte, et ne peux même pas imaginer une quelconque utilisation de ce signe." (p. 35) Edifiant :)
Plus de 900 pages très documentées.

Anonymous Coward #909 (garoo) (2004-05-17T18:51:02Z)

I always had assumed that the type version of the dollar sign had only one stroke for improved legibility. It could be that the sign's history was rewritten afterwards by some people who decided that one stroke was the way to go, couldn't it?

Karl P (2004-05-17T11:01:49Z)

It's a bit like what is the correct pronounciation of David Bowie. Is it with OW as in COW or OW as in LOW.

I've heard it is OW as in LOW (he recorded an album of that name), but OW as in COW is tolerated.

The name BOWIE comes from the Bowie Knife and that Bowie is pronounced BOO-WIE.

Nicolas (2004-05-17T10:41:28Z)

I use two.

evilbilly (2004-05-17T10:15:09Z)

Mon professeur d'anglais me racontait il y a quelques années que le dollar devait être écrit avec deux traits horizontaux à la main, et un seul trait si tapé à la machine/ordinateur. Ceci dit je ne lui ai pas demandé ses sources…
Nico, "vous ne me connaissez pas, vous ne m'avez jamais vu"

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