obol


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Related to obol: COBOL, Charon, obolus

ob·ol

 (ŏb′əl) also ob·o·lus (ŏb′ə-ləs)
n. pl. ob·ols also ob·o·li (-ə-lī′)
A silver coin or unit of weight equal to one sixth of a drachma, formerly used in ancient Greece.

[Latin obolus, from Greek obolos, variant of obelos, spit, skewer, obol (since the early Greek obol had the form of a long, slender rod like a spit for roasting).]

ob•ol

(ˈɒb əl)

n.
an ancient Greek coin, the sixth part of a drachma.
[1660–70; < Latin < Greek obolós, literally, spit; compare obelus]
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References in periodicals archive ?
They are dead, and they are waiting their turn to pay their obol to cross the Styx, and the musicians are there to entertain them and to hurry them along.
The grain merchants were prohibited from adding more than an obol (one-sixth of a drachma) per medimnus to the price of grain they had paid to the emporoi.
Thus, in this position, you give and you take usury, just as they were accustomed to do for a sacrificing priest, offering to the priest an obol (10) at the altars so that the [priests] may retain the gain of the offering in the church.
I thought of Charon's obol; of the obol for which Belisarius begged; of Judas' thirty coins; of the drachmas of Lais, the famous courtesan; of the ancient coin which one of the Seven Sleepers proffered; of the shining coins of the wizard in the 1001 Nights, that turned out to be bits of paper; of the inexhaustible penny of Isaac Laquedem; of the sixty thousand pieces of silver, one for each line of an epic, which Firdusi sent back to a king because they were not of gold; of the doubloon which Ahab nailed to the mast; of Leopold Bloom's irreversible florin; of the louis whose pictured face betrayed the fugitive Louis XVI near Varennes (158-59; 108-09).
The sales tax was one obol and the restored sales price less than five drachmas.
The Greek obol for instance means digit, and drachma means handful.