Green’s Dictionary of Slang

caser n.1

[Yid. kesef, silver; thus the silver five-shilling piece, and the dollar, then worth five shillings (25p)]

1. five shillings (25p).

[Aus]Australian (Sydney) 29 Sept. 3/4: A swell drew out his thimble [...] together with a few casers [AND].
Hill’s Life N.S.W. (Sydney) 10 Aug. 3: ‘Why, here’s a caser for you,’ throwing down [...] what had the semblance of a dollar, but what turned out to be a piece of base metal [AND].
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 26 Feb. 1/4: So I gets [...] these ere crabs, watch, and togs, so I’m a Svell un vith a caser in this ere cly.
[UK]A. Harris Emigrant Family I 212: Here’s a caser; the rest is to come .
[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc. (2nd edn).
[UK] ‘Autobiog. of a Thief’ in Macmillan’s Mag. (London) XL 501: One morning I found I did not have more than a caser (five shillings) for stock-pieces (stock-money).
[Aus]Dead Bird (Sydney) 20 July 3/3: Has he never put a caser on a dead bird for himself?
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 23 Dec. 5/7: The new-found father-in-law [...] borrowed a ‘caser’, so that he might make a speedy adjournment to the corner pub.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Send Round the Hat’ in Roderick (1972) 471: He made up five shillings (or a ‘caser’ in Bush language).
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 3 Sept. 39/2: No, you’re the jugginses wot give her the yellow boys all mixed up with the casers. That’s why they cleared.
[Aus]G.H. Lawson Dict. of Aus. Words And Terms 🌐 CASER – Five shillings.
[Aus]Sydney Sportsman (Surry Hills, NSW) 11 Nov. 4/4: Irish Eyes had run like a hairy dog at her two previous starts and punters were beginning to think that she wasn't worth a ‘caser’.
[UK]Thieves Slang ms list from District Police Training Centre, Ryton-on-Dunsmore, Warwicks n.p.: Caser: Five shillings.
[UK]J. Curtis You’re in the Racket, Too 245: ‘Caser,’ he said and put down two half-crowns.
[Aus]L. Glassop Lucky Palmer 42: I’ll bet you a caser that the one on the right flies way before the one on the left.
[UK]P. Hoskins No Hiding Place! 190/1: Caser. Five shillings.
[Aus]D. Niland Shiralee 138: I can dook you a caser if it’s any good to you.
[UK]F. Norman Guntz 5: I had a caser in my pocket, and a holdall in one hand.
[UK] (ref. to 1930s) R. Barnes Coronation Cups and Jam Jars 207: Kasa [sic] – 5 shillings.
[UK] in G. Tremlett Little Legs 193: caser five shillings (a pre-decimal phrase that is now largely out of use).

2. (US) $1.

[US]Amer. Mag. May 508: Thirteen casers every month [HDAS].
[US]F.H. Tillotson How I Became a Detective 89: He [a thief] will call it a ‘caser,’ a ‘buck,’ or a ‘bone’ if it is silver.
[US]Day Book (Chicago) 12 Sept. 8/2: Here, waiter, nab this frog-tinted ten caser and make it cover the damage.
[US]Maines & Grant Wise-crack Dict.
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 41/2: Caser. 1. A dollar.

3. (Aus.) a five-year prison sentence.

[Aus]T. Hartley glossary in Simes DAUS (1993) 39/1: caser [...] a sentence of five years’ imprisonment.

In phrases

half-a-caser (n.) (also half-caser)

1. (Aus.) half-a-crown, 2s 6d (12½p.).

[Aus]Sydney Sl. Dict. (2 edn) 2: Half-a-caser - Half-a-crown.
[Aus]Dead Bird (Sydney) 21 Dec. 3/4: One of the Kangaroos paid half a caser for a practical joke [...] last week.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Across the Straits’ in Roderick (1972) 200: We had a drink with him at the expense of one of the half-casers mentioned in the beginning of this article.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 20 Jan. 3/6: She called [...] offering to fight Mariar and myself for ‘’arf-a-caser’.
[Aus]W.T. Goodge ‘Great Aus. Slanguage’ in Baker Aus. Lang. (1945) 117: And his naming of the coinage / Is a mystery to some, / With his quid and half-a-caser / And his deener and his scrum.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Send Round the Hat’ in Roderick (1972) 472: The crown was worn thin as paper by the quids, half-quids, casers, half-casers, bobs and tanners or sprats — to say nothing of the scrums — that had been chucked into it in its time.
[Aus]Argus (Melbourne) 20 Sept. 6/4: A half crown may be either an alderman, half a bull, half a tusheroon, or half-a-caser.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 4 Oct. 17/1: Boys, throw in half-a-caser apiece, an’ I’ll guarantee ye no shearin’ on Monday.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 29 Jan. 5/3: And the nimble half-a-casers / Would supplant the retched pence.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Johnson’s Jag’ in Roderick (1972) 795: The half-caser was in her stocking now, along with the rest.
[UK]L. Ortzen Down Donkey Row 158: The ’re of the Church ’All for the night is only ’alf a caser.
[Aus]N. Pulliam I Travelled a Lonely Land (1957) 233/2: half a caser – half a crown.

2. (US) half a dollar.

[US]G. Bronson-Howard God’s Man 361: I took out half a caser and looked him in the eye.