Etymology
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legem pone (n.)
"payment of money, cash down," 1570s, old slang, from the title in the Anglican prayer-book of the psalm appointed for Matins on the 25th of the month; it was consequently associated especially with March 25, the new year of the old calendar and a quarter day, when payments and debts came due and money changed hands generally. The title is from the first two words of the fifth division of Psalm cxix: Legem pone mihi, Domine, viam justificationum tuarum "Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes."
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pony (v.)
1824, in pony up "to pay," of uncertain origin; similar uses of pony or poney in the sense "money" date to late 18c. OED says from pony (n.), but not exactly how. "Dictionary of American Slang" says it is from slang use of Latin legem pone (q.v.) to mean "money" (first recorded 16c.), because this was the title of the Psalm for March 25, a Quarter Day and the first payday of the year. Latin pone is the imperative of Latin ponere "to put, place" (see position). Related: Ponied; ponying.
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pone (n.)

1630s, "American Indian bread," earlier appone, ponap (1610s), from Powhatan (Algonquian) apan "something baked," from apen "she bakes." Later used in Southern U.S. for any type of cornbread, "especially coarse kinds used by the negroes and poorer whites, commonly called corn-pone" [Century Dictionary, 1897]. Properly, corn pone is made from corn flour and milk, baked or fried.

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corn-pone (n.)

"Indian-corn bread made with milk and eggs and baked in a pan," 1848, American English, from corn (n.1) + pone (n.).

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sergeant (n.)
c. 1200, "servant," from Old French sergent, serjant "(domestic) servant, valet; court official; soldier," from Medieval Latin servientum (nominative serviens) "servant, vassal, soldier" (in Late Latin "public official"), from Latin servientem "serving," present participle of servire "to serve" (see serve (v.)); cognate with Spanish sirviente, Italian servente; a twin of servant, and 16c. writers sometimes use the two words interchangeably.

Specific sense of "military servant" is attested from late 13c.; that of "officer whose duty is to enforce judgments of a tribunal or legislative body" is from c. 1300 (sergeant at arms is attested from late 14c.). Meaning "non-commissioned military officer" first recorded 1540s. Originally a much more important rank than presently. As a police rank, in Great Britain from 1839.

Middle English alternative spelling serjeant (from Old French) was retained in Britain in special use as title of a superior order of barristers (c. 1300, from legal Latin serviens ad legem, "one who serves (the king) in matters of law"), from which Common Law judges were chosen; also used of certain other officers of the royal household. sergeant-major is from 1570s. The sergeant-fish (1871) so-called for lateral markings resembling a sergeant's stripes. Related: Sergeancy.
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