Money which may be legally used in the payment of a debt, and which the creditor must accept. The laws of the United States specifically state the legal tender qualities of all forms of money in this country, as follows:

"Gold coins, standard silver dollars, subsidiary silver, minor coins, United States notes, and Treasury notes of 1890 have the legal tender quality as follows: Gold coin is legal tender for its nominal value when not below the limit of tolerance in weight; when below that limit it is legal tender in proportion to its weight; standard silver dollars and Treasury notes of 1890 are legal tender for all debts, public and private, except where otherwise expressly stipulated in the contract; subsidiary silver is legal tender to the extent of $10, minor coins to the extent of 25 cents, and United States notes for all debts, public and private, except duties on imports and interest on the public debt. Gold certificates, silver certificates, and national bank notes are non-legal tender money. Both kinds of certificates, however, are receivable for all public dues; and national bank notes are receivable for all public dues except duties on imports, and may be paid out for all salaries, demands, etc., owing by the Government within the United States, except interest on the public debt and in the redemption of the national currency."

Foreign coins are not legal tender in the United States.

Before the Civil War, gold and silver coins were the only recognized legal tender money in this country.

During Massachusetts' Colonial days, when other money became scarce, wampum was made a "legal tender" up to a limited amount and at a fixed rate. In the same manner, tobacco was used in Virginia, and tobacco and Indian corn in Maryland.1

" Cours legal " is the French term for " legal tender."