sterling

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Sterling

A term for the British pound. While the official name of the currency is pound sterling, "sterling" tends to be used in accounting and foreign exchange contexts while "pound," and, less formally, "quid," are used in day-to-day transactions.

sterling

the name given to the UK POUND when used in international dealings, primarily to distinguish it from other countries also using the pound as a domestic currency. Formerly, large amounts of sterling were held by members of the British Commonwealth (the so-called ‘sterling area bloc’) and others, as part of their INTERNATIONAL RESERVES.

sterling

the name given to the UK POUND in international dealings to distinguish it from other countries using the pound as the basis of their currencies. Formerly, most countries extensively involved in international trade kept large sterling balances as part of their stock of INTERNATIONAL RESERVES, but nowadays sterling is little used as a reserve asset except by a number of current and former member countries of the British Commonwealth.
References in classic literature ?
A short time since an English physician returned to England from Copiapo, taking with him the profits of one share of a silver-mine, which amounted to about 24,000 pounds sterling. No doubt a copper-mine with care is a sure game, whereas the other is gambling, or rather taking a ticket in a lottery.
Rose was delighted; and as soon as I had told her all I thought proper - which was all I affected to know - she flew with alacrity to put on her bonnet and shawl, and hasten to carry the glad tidings to the Millwards and Wilsons - glad tidings, I suspect, to none but herself and Mary Millward - that steady, sensible girl, whose sterling worth had been so quickly perceived and duly valued by the supposed Mrs.
"Yes, her position is very difficult; she..." began Stepan Arkadyevitch, in the simplicity of his heart accepting as sterling coin Princess Myakaya's words "tell me about her." Princess Myakaya interrupted him immediately, as she always did, and began talking herself.
I was now master, all on a sudden, of above five thousand pounds sterling in money, and had an estate, as I might well call it, in the Brazils, of above a thousand pounds a year, as sure as an estate of lands in England: and, in a word, I was in a condition which I scarce knew how to understand, or how to compose myself for the enjoyment of it.