Sunday, May 10, 2009

How Scripophily Got Its Name

Scripophily (pronounced skri-pahf-ily) is hardly a household word, even among collectors themselves. In April of 1978, the Times announced the formation of a contest to find a suitable name for interest in stocks and bonds collectibles. The newspaper chose “bondaphily,” but the term encountered a negative reception. Another reader, who happened to be a fledgling collector himself, offered a bond worth ten pounds to the reader who created the most appropriate name for the hobby.

On May 9, 1978 the winner was announced. Arthur Howell of Brighton submitted the winning entry, “scripophily.” Mr. Howell derived his winning entry from the English word “scrip” (as in a provisional certificate as for shares, share certificates, or shares or stock collectively—an abbreviation from “subscription receipt”) and the Greek “philein” (meaning “to love”).

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