One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A large gold coin or medallion of ancient Sicily, worth fifty litrae or ten drachmas.
Mid 18th century; earliest use found in Universal History. From Hellenistic Greek πεντηκοντάλιτρον, use as noun of neuter of πεντηκοντάλιτρος of fifty litrae from ancient Greek πεντήκοντα fifty + λίτρα silver coin of Sicily, also measure of weight.
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