The duit was a copper Dutch coin worth 2 penning, with 8 duit pieces equal to one stuiver and 160 duit pieces equal to one gulden. In Dutch Indonesia 4 duit pieces were equal to one stuiver. To prevent smuggling, the Dutch East India Company (VOC) ordered special coins with their monogram embossed upon them. Only those pieces were valid in Indonesia. It was once used in the Americas while under Dutch rule.
The name of the coin was preserved for a long time in the 'fourduitcoin' (or plak), because it was worth 4 duiten = half a stuiver (or 2.5 cents).
The single largest recipient of Dutch duit coins was Java. Ceylon and Malabar did also circulate the coins. The word duit was absorbed into the Malaysian and Indonesian vocabulary, becoming a slang word for 'money', besides wang (Malay) and uang (Indonesian).
The duit is also referred to as the "New York penny" due to its use as a Colonial monetary unit in Dutch New Amsterdam (later New York) and for years later, long after Dutch rule had passed. It was part of the coinage used to purchase the island of Manhattan from the locals.
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