drachma

[drak-muh, drahk-]
noun, plural drachmas, drachmae [drak-mee, drahk-] .
1.
a cupronickel coin and monetary unit of modern Greece until the euro was adopted, equal to 100 lepta. Abbreviation: dr., drch.
2.
the principal silver coin of ancient Greece.
3.
a small unit of weight in ancient Greece, approximately equivalent to the U.S. and British apothecaries' dram.
4.
any of various modern weights, especially a dram.
Also, drachm.


Origin:
1520–30; < Latin < Greek drachmḗ, probably equivalent to drach- base of drássesthai to grasp + -mē noun suffix (hence literally, handful)

drachmal, adjective
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World English Dictionary
drachma (ˈdrækmə)
 
n , pl -mas, -mae
1.  the former standard monetary unit of Greece, divided into 100 lepta; replaced by the euro in 2002
2.  (US) another name for dram
3.  a silver coin of ancient Greece
4.  a unit of weight in ancient Greece
 
[C16: from Latin, from Greek drakhmē a handful, from drassesthai to seize]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

drachma
1579, from Gk. drakhme, an Attic coin and weight, probably originally "a handful" (see dram).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

drachma

silver coin of ancient Greece, dating from about the mid-6th century BC, and the former monetary unit of modern Greece. The drachma was one of the world's earliest coins. Its name derives from the Greek verb meaning "to grasp," and its original value was equivalent to that of a handful of arrows. The early drachma had different weights in different regions. From the 5th century BC, Athens gained commercial preeminence, and the Athenian drachma became the foremost currency. One drachma equaled 6 oboli; 100 drachmas equaled 1 mine; and 60 mine equaled 1 Attic talent.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences for drachma
Drachma is the captain of the small fishing airship, little jack.
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