Thus, "a threepence" would be single coin of that value whereas "three pence" would be its value and "three pennies" would be three penny coins.
In British English, divisions of a penny were added to such combinations without a conjunction, as sixpence-farthing, and such constructions were also treated as single nouns.
Presently, it is the formal name of the British penny ( The name is also used in reference to various historical currencies also derived from the Carolingian system, such as the French denier and the German pfennig.(The misnomer is based on a probable misreading of the Anglo-Saxon legal codes.) Near the end of his reign, Offa minted his coins in imitation of Charlemagne's reformed pennies.Offa's coins were imitated by East Anglia, Kent, Wessex and Northumbria, as well as by two Archbishops of Canterbury.The medieval silver penny was modeled on similar coins in antiquity, such as the Greek drachma, the Carthaginian shekel, and the Roman denarius.Forms of these seem to have reached as far as Norway and Sweden.