Score (Number)

Score is an Old English word referring to a set of twenty. It originated from Old Norse, where its meaning referred to cutting a notch into a piece of wood. These notches were specifically used for counting herds of livestock in sets of twenty and then making a mark on a piece of wood. Additionally they were used in record keeping such as tracking accounting balances or inventory. Interestingly, the word for the number twenty comes from the word tally, which is also the practice of notching wood for counting. The twenty dollar bill is also sometimes referred to as a score.

Probably the most famous use of the word score is Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, which begins with, "Four score and seven years ago," meaning eighty seven years ago: (4 * 20) + 7 = 87