One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
British government securities without redemption date and with fixed annual interest.
- ‘For this period, he lists 126 lotteries; only 87 were strictly for cash prizes; in the rest, prizes were paid in consols or tickets in a supplementary lottery.’
- ‘I write a letter to him saying ‘I give you my Blackacre estate, my leasehold house in the High Street, the sum of £1000 Consols standing in my name, the wine in my cellar.’’
- ‘When the Funds are low, it is a good thing to redeem it, because you may pay in Consols instead of in money.’
Late 18th century: contraction of consolidated annuities.
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