Devyn writes: I’m doing a research for my fifth grade on where and how the cent sign was developed. Can you please help me? Thank you
The word cent derives from the Latin word “centum” meaning hundred. The cent symbol “¢” is shorthand for $0.01 or one hundredth of a dollar. The term “cent” represents 1/100th. The word cent is used in measurement as well. For example a centimeter is 1/100th of a meter.
Some speculate that the the use of the symbol goes back to Thomas Jefferson in the 18th century who proposed a decimal system for the new country’s currency, but the consensus is that it first came into use in the early nineteenth century. It was common to place a line through a letter as a way of indicating that it was a currency symbol, so the lower case “c’ for cents became“¢.”
The “$” sign also appears in use at about this time. See: The story behind the $ symbol