Entry from British & World English dictionary
Definition of penny plain in English:
- West saw the potential of the new craze and responded by producing sheets of characters, which he sold at ‘a penny plain and twopenny coloured’: ‘juvenile drama’ was born.
- Some chapters in this new collection are penny plain, like the folksy title essay which seems to be aimed at softening or humanising the famously macho caste of philosophers.
- If the tinsel print was of the ‘penny plain’ variety, the hobbyist took the portrait sheet home and painted in his own colors.
Mid 19th century: with reference to prints of characters sold for toy theatres, costing one penny for black-and-white ones, and two pennies for coloured ones.
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