What language is "ecu"?

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The Independent Online
You appear to take it for granted that the new European coinage is going to be called the ecu ("Revealed: the two colours of Europe's new money", 19 March). Whatever else happens as to monetary union, the name of the currency must not decided by back-stage bureaucracy.

The ecu (European Currency Unit) is, of course, an old French coinage equivalent to the English crown. With its acute-accented first vowel and characteristically Frankish final one, ecu is unpronounceable in every European language apart from French. (What are we supposed to call it? Ee-queue?)

Far better if each country has its own name for the new currency and since the word pound (originally of gold) exists in every European language - pound, livre, punt, libra etc - wouldn't it be simpler to call the new money the European pound (or la livre Europenne) and offend nobody?

Ian Flintoff

London SW6

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