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  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj threepenny of trifling worth
    • adj threepenny used of nail size; 1 1/8 in long
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • a Threepenny Costing or worth three pence; hence, worth but little; poor; mean.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • threepenny Worth three pence only; hence, of little worth.
    • n threepenny Same as threepence, 1.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Threepenny worth threepence: of little worth: mean, vulgar
    • ***


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. þreó, þrý, þír; Ice. þrír, Gael. tri, Goth. threis, Ger. drei, L. tres, Gr. treis, Sans. tri.


In literature:

A quart of threepenny ale for breakfast, with a hunch of bread and cheese, then out to work again in the weather, let it be what it may.
"The Toilers of the Field" by Richard Jefferies
There's many as gives us a threepenny for more than I've done for 'im.
"The Marriage of Elinor" by Margaret Oliphant
Cut the crumb of a threepenny loaf into slices, boil and sweeten two quarts of new milk, and pour over it.
"The Cook and Housekeeper's Complete and Universal Dictionary; Including a System of Modern Cookery, in all Its Various Branches," by Mary Eaton
Give him a medio (a threepenny-piece) somebody.
"The Pearl of the Antilles, or An Artist in Cuba" by Walter Goodman
He loved to give threepenny-pieces to the boys who pleased him.
"The Strand Magazine, Volume V, Issue 25, January 1893" by Various
They caught the van at the crossroads, and bought a threepenny loaf.
"The Wolf Patrol" by John Finnemore
I met someone the other day who knew me two years ago and they said I'd gone as thin as a threepenny-bit.
"Carnival" by Compton Mackenzie
Then I asked for a threepenny loaf, and was told they had none such.
"Library of the World's Best Literature, Ancient and Modern, Vol. 15" by Various
The bonnet was composed of a single scrap of antique lace folded over a threepenny bit.
"Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 98, June 28 1890" by Various
He also discarded pipes as being vulgar, and took to threepenny cigars instead.
"The Gay Adventure" by Richard Bird
Pipette unhesitatingly picked the threepenny-bit, and was commended for her acumen.
""Pip"" by Ian Hay
He hastened to the first baker's shop and asked for threepenny worth of bread.
"The Story of American History" by Albert F. Blaisdell
There were "havenzie's" and "Ich Wimsche's" enough to have served a threepenny manual of traveller's talk here.
"The Lady Evelyn" by Max Pemberton
Then I asked for a threepenny loaf, and was told they had none such.
"Franklin's Autobiography" by Benjamin Franklin
She used to borrow our threepenny-bits to make up the dusty man's fare.
"My Little Sister" by Elizabeth Robins
I then asked for a threepenny loaf, and was told they had none.
"Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 1 of 2]" by Benjamin Franklin
You asked for a penny, and they gave you what only looked like a threepenny bit.
"Memoirs of a Midget" by Walter de la Mare
She had no money but that threepenny-piece.
"Meg's Friend" by Alice Abigail Corkran
But you can't expect it to be like a common threepenny weed.
"The Further Adventures of Mr. Verdant Green, an Oxford Under-Graduate" by Cuthbert Bede
I cannot have you joining any threepenny concern that may be going about, or, indeed, any concern at all.
"Mammon and Co." by E. F. Benson

In news:

Landscape Architect Kim Wilkie--Threepenny Opera--Environmental Art--Symphony in C's K Thiagarajan.
Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill's The Threepenny Opera, based on John Gay's satiric eighteenth-century piece, The Beggar's Opera, burst onto the Berlin scene in 1928.
Capitalism gets a look in the satiric Threepenny Opera.
" Threepenny Opera," the racy musical that inspired such others as "Cabaret" and "Chicago," comes to the Lawrence Arts Center stage this week.
Landscape Architect Kim Wilkie-- Threepenny Opera--Environmental Art--Symphony in C's K Thiagarajan.
A fair amount of flesh is involved in the all-out bawdy "I'm bad, very bad" version of The Threepenny Opera at the Western Stage.
Stand-up comedienne-turned-Threepenny Opera star celebrates conservationist Carson.
Martin Clark and Meng-Jung Tsai in The Threepenny Opera.
(I'd be willing to bet my typing fingers, though, that its title does not include the words Paris, Threepenny, or Ploughshares.