How much does this dress cost? It’s 2000 Bucks.

How much does this pen cost? It’s 20 Bucks.

We often hear such conversations where ‘Bucks‘ is referred to as unit in money. Usually, Buck is used interchangeably with a Dollar. But, what is the significance of this term?

Does it have any meaning or just another meaningless slang used by people?

To understand this let’s start with the word Buck.

So, what is the actual meaning of Buck?

The dictionary definition is

“the male of some horned animals, especially deer, reindeer, and antelopes”

Bucks is derived from Buckskin which is generally a deerskin. In the 18th Century, European settlers and Native Americans often trade, and there was no currency at that time. But to trade, something has to be exchanged as a consideration. At that time, trade happened as per the Barter system. The colonists and the Native Americans were trading in Buckskins. For a particular commodity, there was no fixed value in Buckskins as the Deer hunted in the winter was more expensive than the one hunted in Summer because of the fur. So, it might be possible that one has to pay more depending upon the quality of Buckskins.

There was no particular value for a buckskin. Buckskins from the winter season had more value than Summer Buckskins. A documented proof from the year 1748 reveals that the value of a barrel of whisky is the same as the value for 5 Bucks.

As time passed, Buckskin became Bucks. When Dollar was introduced around 1972, traders stopped trading in Buckskin and started trade in Dollars. But the term was still in the minds and they started relating the money to Bucks.

There are also few expressions attached to Buck such as Breaking the buck, Buck value, Make a fast buck, Quick buck, Making an honest buck, etc.

4 thoughts on “Bucks and Dollar

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    P.S Sorry for being off-topic but I had to ask!

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