Pennies from heaven

Posted by Smokey Stover on October 03, 2005

In Reply to: Pennies from heaven posted by ESC on October 02, 2005

: : Where does the phrase "pennies from heaven" come from, and what is the meaning?

: We've discussed this before, but I don't think we reached a conclusion. Maybe: good fortune out of the blue?

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From the OED: "e. pennies from heaven: money acquired without effort or risk; unexpected benefits, esp. financial ones. Also (in sing.): a windfall, a godsend (rare). [1st two citations:] [1928 A. BURSTEIN Ghetto Messenger 91 The gentleman, being cognizant of 'pennies falling from heaven' and other tricks.., appeared to take it seriously.] 1936 J. BURKE (title of song) Pennies from heaven." SS