What is a ‘C-note’?
A C-note, a term that originated in the United States, is another more colloquial way of referring to a US one hundred dollar bill. It is believed that this slang term dates back to the 1920s or 1930s; today it is commonly used in casinos and other gambling establishments to refer to the banknote.
Thought to originae in the 1920s and 1930s, the C-note reference takes its meaning from the Roman numeral ‘C’, which means 100. The ‘Note’ part simply refers to fact that it is a banknote.
It also thought that the term C-note came about because, between 1869 and 1914, the hundred-dollar bill had an uppercase ‘C’ printed in its upper-left hand corner.
Popularised by its common usage in the many gangster films of the jazz age, the term C-note has recently seen a decline in its prominence of use. Instead, it is more common today that the hundred-dollar bill, or C-note, is referred to simply as a ‘Benjamin’. This is because the portrait of Benjamin Franklin – one of the American founding fathers – appears on the front of the banknote.
Less common is the name ‘Cecil’, which is also sometimes used to describe the banknote. Other US banknotes have also been given slang terms. These include a G-note, which refers to a $1,000 dollar bill and takes its ‘G’ from the fact that a thousand is often referred to as a ‘grand’.
Other example of this slang includes ‘Half A C-note’, which is used to describe a banknote valued at $50. As you can probably guess, this term is derived from the fact that a ‘C-Note’ is $100, and half of this is $50. Hence – ‘Half A C-Note’.