Stingy about small expenditures and extravagant with large ones, as in Dean clips all the coupons for supermarket bargains but insists on going to the best restaurants—penny wise and pound foolish. This phrase alludes to British currency, in which a pound was once worth 240 pennies, or pence, and is now worth 100 pence. The phrase is also occasionally used for being very careful about unimportant matters and careless about important ones. It was used in this way by Joseph Addison in The Spectator (1712): “A woman who will give up herself to a man in marriage where there is the least Room for such an apprehension … may very properly be accused … of being penny wise and pound foolish.” [ c. 1600 ]
[pen-ee-wurt, -wawrt] /ˈpɛn iˌwɜrt, -ˌwɔrt/ noun 1. any of several plants having round or roundish leaves, as the navelwort. /ˈpɛnɪˌwɜːt/ noun 1. Also called navelwort. a crassulaceous Eurasian rock plant, Umbilicus rupestris (or Cotyledon umbilicus), with whitish-green tubular flowers and rounded leaves 2. a marsh plant, Hydrocotyle vulgaris, of Europe and North Africa, having circular […]
[pen-ee-wurth] /ˈpɛn iˌwɜrθ/ noun 1. as much as may be bought for a penny. 2. a small quantity. 3. a bargain. /ˈpɛnɪˌwɜːθ/ noun 1. the amount that can be bought for a penny 2. a small amount: he hasn’t got a pennyworth of sense n. Old English peningwurð; see penny + worth (adj.). Figurative of […]
[puh-nob-skot, -skuh t] /pəˈnɒb skɒt, -skət/ noun, plural Penobscots (especially collectively) Penobscot for 2. 1. a river flowing S from N Maine into Penobscot Bay. 350 miles (565 km) long. 2. a member of a North American Indian people of the Penobscot River valley. 3. the Eastern Algonquian language of the Penobscot, a dialect of […]
noun 1. an inlet of the Atlantic in S Maine. 30 miles (48 km) long.