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Author Topic: The Currency of Santharia, Rewrite  (Read 6472 times)
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Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels
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« on: 10 July 2012, 18:53:52 »

As discussed, here the rewrite of the Currency Entry.
I changed much more, than I intended to and added deven more. I thought e.g., that it is very unlikely, that on so many coins are bards, that so many different ones were introduced voluntarily etc. Not much from Judy‘s entry has survived and I apologise for this. I abandoned the ,Bard‘ , as I think it unlikely, that so many artists  and bards had their head on a coin. The politicians want to see their portrait on the coins.
The old entry is here
I don't think, that the pretty tables will work anymore, the pictures can be integrated.



The Currency of Santharia

Overview

One of the most important improvements Santhran Lysarian Hammersfeld  
introduced during his reign (227 a.S. - 287 a.S.) was a common (shared?) Santharian currency. It was the cornerstone of the following uprise of the economic wellbeing (prosperity?) of the whole of Santharia, today known as the ,Golden Age of Kings‘ (172 - 547a.S.).  The look of those coins has not much changed till today, apart from the celebrities depicted on them.

Description

Each coin has, without exception, the symbol of the linked hands on one side. The interlocking hands represent the races of the kingdom and can be also found at the Santharian coat of arms. The other side varies, depending on its age and location of its origin.

The ,new‘ coins, introduced by Santhran Lysarian Hammersfeld

The new coins Santhran Lysarian introduced are all round and have a milled edge. Each of the bigger coins (apart from the san), has a rim around the central picture where  a few letters are minted in. On the side with the linked hands it is: ,One for all‘ and ,All for one‘, on the obverse it depends on where the coin was minted and who is depicted on it. The name of the province is found on top, the name of the celebrity and his dates of birth and death at the bottom. Only the mint of a thane is allowed to produce them.

San: a small copper coin, about six grains in diameter and half a grain thick, is the smallest unit and is the most widespread one. This is the only coin, which looks the same in every Santharian province. It has a S engraved on one side, which stands for Santharia and the linked hands on its obverse, as any other Santharian coin. A small line runs along each side near the edge.

Copperhead: worth 10 sans,  a bigger copper-coin. On one side the head of a local celebrity is minted in, most often the portrait of the graven, but also that of the mayor of a village or smaller town or sometimes a local famous artist. Its worth is no longer matching the worth of metal (that of 10 sans), but less.

Silverhead : worth 100 sans, a coin out of pure silver, with the head of a local duke on one side.

Silverbard, Tensilver: worth 10 silverheads, 1000 sans, a coin out of a mixture of gold and silver, with the head of a famous, province wide known artist on one side. The name ,silverbard‘ instead of tensilver became soon common, as most often the depicted artist was a famous bard. A silverbard was long time what an artist  earned during a long weekend of hard work performing.  Today the most used coin of this kind depicts the singer and  painter Judy of Bardavos.

Goldhead: worth 100 silverheads, a coin out of gold, with the portrait of the thane or a local famous building on one side. Once a new thane takes over the reign of his lands, one of the first things he will do is to order the minting of new coins with his portrait. The older coins with the former thane are not replaced though, but are used still. When more new coins are minted at a later time a famous building is depicted. The province gains in reputation, if coins with different famous buildings of its area circulate.


Goldsan: Worth 100 Goldheads, a rare coin with the portrait of the Santhran, only a few are minted in Santhala, after a Santhran has ascended his throne.

The older coins

The right of minting those already  established coins had belonged to the local landowners, the dukes,  the gravens, sometimes the mayors of important towns. This right still remained with their former owner.  All coins which were in use before the new currency was introduced could still be used for a period of ten years, from then on they were not entirely abolished, but had to undergo a transformation: On their ,backside‘ the linked hands had to be present, the face-side could be minted as every graven or mayor wished. Their value had to be aligned with the new currency though.


Su: worth 3 sans, a copper triangle with rounded corners and the weight of three sans, showing 1 SU on the face side.

Erg: worth 4 sans, a brass square with rounded corners, showing different beasts of each province.

Hak: worth 50 sans, an iron pentagon with rounded corners, bearing the portrait of a graven or important mayor. As this coin had no equivalent in the new currency, it became the most used one of the older coins.

W‘aer: worth 100 sans, 1 silverhead, a silver hexagon with rounded corners, bearing the portrait of the local duke.

Nune: worth 1 goldhead, 1000 sans, gold octagon with rounded corners, bearing the portrait of a famous, Santharia wide known celebrity of a province. These had been the coins, where the thanes portraits were depicted before the reform, but Lysarion forced his thanes to only use the new coins to represent themselves.

Mithrene: 1000 goldheads, a very rare tensided mithril coin, only used in royal transactions and intercontinental gifts. As this coin is exceptional, it shows not the linked hands, but a portrait of an adamant dragon and the representation of Avá dreaming on the obverse.
It is not known, if such a coin still exists.

The od as standard for weight measurement

Still to come

History

First attempts to make a currency work better were already attempted under King Thar, who gave the order to unify the form of the coins within Tharania. Back then the Su, Erg, Hak, W‘aer  came to life and the od as a standard for weight measurement. Each of those coins should have had approximately the same weight and therefore value. But as every graven and every bigger town were allowed to mint their own coins, with different symbols or images on each side, the effect was not as desired. The trade on a small scale became a little easier, but when goods were traded on a bigger scale, the coins had to be weighted  to ensure, that the value of the metal equaled the worth of the traded good. Even that was problematic, for the standard, a bar of 100 ods, kept in every town hall, had not necessarily the same weight in every town.

Under Santhros the Wise, the Tharanian currency was accepted in  the other provinces as well, but the coins of Strata not necessarily in Quia'antá (the later Santhala).

Santhran Lysarion‘s  genial idea was not only to create a new common currency, but as he integrated the old one he made it more easily accepted. His assumption, that the old currency would vanish after some time, being entirely replaced by the new one however did not work out. We still use it till today, though it is not minted anymore.

In contrary to the old ones, the new coins were all round.  Each new coin, be it the new round one or the old ones, had to show the symbol of the linked hands on one side, the symbol on the other side was free to choose, within limitations.

The new introduced coins were: San, Coppercoin, Silvercoin, Tensilver, Goldcoin and Goldsan.
As there were mostly heads of important people displayed, the coins soon were called copperhead, silverhead and goldhead. Tensilver though turned soon to silverbard, as it became common practise to show the portrait of a famous artist on one side. The smallest coin, the san, is the only one which is the same throughout Santharia. Only a S is engraved in its middle. This way this small coin has become the strongest symbol of the unification of the currency throughout Santharia.

To unify the currency, the old coins had to have the same value as one of the new ones:

1 Hak= 1 Copperhead
1 Waer= 1Silverhead
1 Nune= 1 Goldhead

Tensilver was introduced to have another practical coin for paying off servants or artists.

Though in times of war and havoc, potentates tried to show off their might and introduced new currencies, they never lasted. The people were used to their well known coins and so they survived till today. During the begin of the current century, Santhran Grothunc restricted the minting, so that only thanes are now allowed to use that privilege and since then only the new round coins are minted, but there are enough of the old ones circulating still and will so for quite some time.

Numismatics

Still to come

Importance:



What is special about Santharian currency is the concept which also reflects in the design of the coins: On the one hand the general Santharian currency holds the provinces of the realm together by providing an economical symbol the people from all ancient kingdoms can identify with. It doesn't only make trading a lot easier, it's also an important instrument of better understanding of other people habits and beliefs and therefore represents one of the most important factors for the unity of the kingdom as a whole. On the other hand the local celebrities of the provinces are honored at the local versions of the coins. While on the obverse of the coin the Santharian symbol, the linked hands, are depicted throughout all provinces, the front shows famous people or buildings of the corresponding province.
What is most interesting in this concept is the fact that the coins of the provinces featuring the province's design mixed with other provinces' coins in the course every time when trading transactions were done. This way northern provinces also use e.g. Stratanian coins and thus learn a lot about southern culture and the other way round.
« Last Edit: 10 July 2012, 18:57:25 by Ta'lia of the Seven Jewels » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: 11 July 2012, 03:52:19 »

General note: There sure are some adjustments necessary on what we have on the site if we do a Currency entry rewrite, especially now that we weave its creation into history. Then again, parts of the original entry shouldn't be just removed if it isn't necessary.

For example the explanations on magic in the original entry (after Additional Note in the Concept section) can stay in as they are I'd say.

As for the bards: These are also already mentioned in existing entries, and ideally we shouldn't have to change existing references unless it is done for an important reason and/or has approval of other developers. Looks like you want to keep the silverbard, but not the goldbard and the copperbard, though you also mention that they might show famous local artists.

Suggestion: Couldn't these coin names just be colloquial terms (regardless of what is exactly depicted), so that we have the bard equivalents in all colours? Methinks that was the basic idea of it, and also that there's a certain counterweight to political figures - certain kings and queens (say Bardavos supporters) could promote the arts with these bard coins. I think this puts the whole thing into another context.
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« Reply #2 on: 11 July 2012, 04:28:30 »

Wow, I didn't realise anyone was working on this.  I had considered revising the entry when we briefly talked about currencies during the Vardynn masterplan discussion (starting near the bottom of this page), but it seemed like a lot work so I decided to wait until after I finished some of my other projects.   buck

This is going to be a pretty long comment, but I'm not very familiar with the topic, so don't hesitate to point out any mistakes I might have made. 

One issue this entry doesn't seem to mention is debasement, which caused the value if medieval coins to decrease over time, necessitating the introduction of new types of coins.  Since it can sometimes be financially advantageous for the minting authority to debase their coins, I don't think it is very realistic for the currencies introduced by Lysarian to continue in use unchanged for over a thousand years.  Perhaps it's only the names that stayed the same?  In addition, the several centuries during which Santharia was split into many separate countries would probably have resulted in the old currencies splitting into different regional variants.  If we want the current Santharia to have a relatively unified currency system, perhaps what Grothunc did was not merely reducing the number of people with the privilege of minting coins, but also introducing a new set of coins to replace the old ones? 

Another issue brought up in the Vardynn thread was the enforcement and regulation of minting.  The entry states that only Thanes are currently allowed the privilege of minting coins.  However, for example, if the Thane of Enthronia decides to slightly reduce the silver content of the Silverbard he mints, causing the Enthronian Silverbard to decrease in value relative to the Silverbards minted in the other provinces, does the Santhran/central government have the ability to stop him?  If he doesn't, then when such incidents do happen, the currency will probably end up getting split.  The ranks and titles page seems to suggest that Santhrans actually have very little power over the Thanes, but I know that there's been some discussion about the return of the Santhros dynasty and how that might lead to changes regarding the position of the Santhran, so I'm not really sure what the current political situation is. 

Regarding the Hak, it's made of iron, which isn't usually considered very valuable compared to the other metals used for coins, as far as I know, yet its value seems to be relatively high.  Unless it is extremely large, this seems a little strange to me.  I was thinking, perhaps the reason for this could be that it was an experiment with fiat money? 

Quote
The trade on a small scale became a little easier, but when goods were traded on a bigger scale, the coins had to be weighted  to ensure, that the value of the metal equaled the worth of the traded good. Even that was problematic, for the standard, a bar of 100 ods, kept in every town hall, had not necessarily the same weight in every town.
Actually, I don't think this would happen very often unless it was an unfamiliar coin.  If I remember correctly, what I've read was that merchants usually decided the value of coins based on their 'confidence' in their precious metal content, rather than taking the trouble of measuring them.  So, going back to my Enthronian Silverbard example above, after news spreads that the Thane of Enthronia has lowered the silver content of new batches of Silverbards he recently minted, merchants might start to demand more Enthronian Silverbards in exchange for the same quantity of goods as before, rather than measuring the coins to determine which are older ones with more silver and which are new ones.  The same would apply for exchanging one type of coin for another.  It seems medieval governments did not or could not enforce specific exchange rates between different types of coins. 

Also, if I'm not mistaken, large scale trade was usually between different types of goods, without actual money being exchanged, because it was dangerous for a person to be carrying too much money around. 
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« Reply #3 on: 11 July 2012, 04:41:16 »

Thanks for jumping in with that link Mina, I wasn't actually sure where or when this discussion had taken place. Actually I still don't see where it really took place and why Talia is the one doing this rewrite...


If all that was being done was re-organization and tidying up, I'd be right on board with letting one person tidy it up but what you seem to be proposing is an overhaul Talia.
This isn't a trifling entry that's impossibly old or one that isn't particularly integrated.
It seems to me that any rewriting of this entry does need a little more work since any significant change will affect dozens of entries. Removing the X-Bards from the listings, for example, would require changes to at least a dozen entries. And I rather liked them to boot  :P

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« Reply #4 on: 11 July 2012, 04:51:22 »

Comments which were written while I wrote this one - next post

@Art


Art, I think you know, that I have been always the one who said, that as much as possible from an existing entry should be preserved (and that I was fighting for it.) A good example you can find here: Demons of Caelereth* So, this reminder was not necessary. I know as well, that there changing references is hard work.

The magic - I simply forgot it. I wanted to ask our current mages, if this is ok as it is, it seemed a bit outdated to me as well. As Judith is living in our times, I can't include it as an old opinion . (And cite her)

I tried to keep the part in the 'importance' part as it is, but somehow it didn't fit either without changing a simple word.

I wanted to  keep the bards, but as I said, I find it unlikely, that a 'bard' is nearly on every coin. Those who mint the coins want their own head on it. The copperhead has sometimes an artist, but 'celebrities' - and most often gravens..

The goldhead does not work with bard at all, with the thane's portrait or a famous building on it. Bardavos might be an idea though, but only as an exception. But maybe I try to just let the 'bard' spring from over from the silverbard to the other coins. 'Goldhead' is as catchy as 'goldbard' though, me thinks. But if there is a better name than 'head' or 'bard' I'm open for suggestions also. Or it changed at a later date, as the tensilver changed to silverbard. Maybe that's the idea. I don't think though, that the goldbard is mentioned in too many entries.

So far only critique from your side, no single word, if the 7+ hours I have put in it were worth the time and if I should go over it for polishing and adding some other smaller ideas? Was it e.g. a good idea, to split the coins in new and old ones?



*Could you please add  a link to this entry in the overview? Now one can only find it, if one uses the alphabetical order. (see pic)
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« Reply #5 on: 11 July 2012, 05:07:34 »

Just made a first comment, Talia, which popped into my mind. I of course need to read the whole thing first - it's not that I can comment instantly on a 7+ hours entry! Patience, patience! cool

Demons: Link to entry in overview? Alphabetic order? What do you mean exactly? The Demons Overview is in the alphabetic Bestiary list and in the Compendium. Where is a link missing?
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« Reply #6 on: 11 July 2012, 05:19:39 »

@Mina:


Quote
Wow, I didn't realise anyone was working on this.  I had considered revising the entry when we briefly talked about currencies during the Vardynn masterplan discussion (starting near the bottom of this page), but it seemed like a lot work so I decided to wait until after I finished some of my other projects.   buck

I'm sorry, I didn't know you were workign on it, I hadn't seen this discussion, nor read anything about that Masterplan (where is Vardynn? ;) )
Now I had a VERY short look - even Curgan was there!

Quote
This is going to be a pretty long comment, but I'm not very familiar with the topic, so don't hesitate to point out any mistakes I might have made
.

I'm familiar with it neither

Quote
One issue this entry doesn't seem to mention is debasement, which caused the value if medieval coins to decrease over time, necessitating the introduction of new types of coins.  Since it can sometimes be financially advantageous for the minting authority to debase their coins, I don't think it is very realistic for the currencies introduced by Lysarian to continue in use unchanged for over a thousand years.  Perhaps it's only the names that stayed the same?  In addition, the several centuries during which Santharia was split into many separate countries would probably have resulted in the old currencies splitting into different regional variants.  If we want the current Santharia to have a relatively unified currency system, perhaps what Grothunc did was not merely reducing the number of people with the privilege of minting coins, but also introducing a new set of coins to replace the old ones?

Debasement - didn't know the word at all, but mentioned it for the copperbard, well, not that it was lowered after the time, but that it wasn't worth 10 sans of copper.

I thought that too, but so much in Santharia last 1000 years, why not the currency. But I'm open to any suggestions

Quote
Another issue brought up in the Vardynn thread was the enforcement and regulation of minting.  The entry states that only Thanes are currently allowed the privilege of minting coins.  However, for example, if the Thane of Enthronia decides to slightly reduce the silver content of the Silverbard he mints, causing the Enthronian Silverbard to decrease in value relative to the Silverbards minted in the other provinces, does the Santhran/central government have the ability to stop him?  If he doesn't, then when such incidents do happen, the currency will probably end up getting split.  The ranks and titles page seems to suggest that Santhrans actually have very little power over the Thanes, but I know that there's been some discussion about the return of the Santhros dynasty and how that might lead to changes regarding the position of the Santhran, so I'm not really sure what the current political situation is.

The only solution would be, that they are not allowed to change the metal content of the coins.

Quote
Regarding the Hak, it's made of iron, which isn't usually considered very valuable compared to the other metals used for coins, as far as I know, yet its value seems to be relatively high.  Unless it is extremely large, this seems a little strange to me.  I was thinking, perhaps the reason for this could be that it was an experiment with fiat money?

Took it from Judy's entry as it was.

Quote
Quote
The trade on a small scale became a little easier, but when goods were traded on a bigger scale, the coins had to be weighted  to ensure, that the value of the metal equaled the worth of the traded good. Even that was problematic, for the standard, a bar of 100 ods, kept in every town hall, had not necessarily the same weight in every town.

Actually, I don't think this would happen very often unless it was an unfamiliar coin.  If I remember correctly, what I've read was that merchants usually decided the value of coins based on their 'confidence' in their precious metal content, rather than taking the trouble of measuring them.  So, going back to my Enthronian Silverbard example above, after news spreads that the Thane of Enthronia has lowered the silver content of new batches of Silverbards he recently minted, merchants might start to demand more Enthronian Silverbards in exchange for the same quantity of goods as before, rather than measuring the coins to determine which are older ones with more silver and which are new ones.  The same would apply for exchanging one type of coin for another.  It seems medieval governments did not or could not enforce specific exchange rates between different types of coins.


Well, I thought about how it could be possible to have the coins with the same value/worth, so I thought I introduce the od or a bigger version as a master weight. But I'm not fit in such things.Don't know, if it would work.
Quote
Also, if I'm not mistaken, large scale trade was usually between different types of goods, without actual money being exchanged, because it was dangerous for a person to be carrying too much money around.
Didn't know that, but it makes sense.

Mina, I don't mind giving the submission over to you. The only thing I needed was 'something' I could give Lysarion to introduced, for he should:

Quote
King II (Cultural King)
- First steps from a patronized system to a guild system, mainly to control magical power, first official dependencies of Ximax are instituted in other major towns, testing and teaching
- Standardization of Currency ("Golden" Age)

Maybe I should only have written a short entry about what he did, but that would contradict the current entry also, for I need something new!

What about doing this entry together? Currently I'm only interested in the part Lysarion did . It doesn't have to be done now, as long as I know, what to write in this history entry. Could well be, that other things happen later.

No spellcheck, doesn't work properly for me.

Btw, I'm away till Sunday, have internet, but no idea how much time, and no access to the stuff on my comp (staying with my parents)
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« Reply #7 on: 11 July 2012, 05:21:27 »

Art, sorry, forgot to add the SS

There you look first, I think, and should there not be a link to it also?
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« Reply #8 on: 11 July 2012, 05:24:29 »

Valan why so hostile?

I have only done what I thought is necessary to get the history going - and have asked Art before I started.
Please read my comment for Mina, there I did explain why I started something I'm not really interested in.
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« Reply #9 on: 11 July 2012, 05:34:07 »

The reason for my "hostility" real or otherwise, is that the phrasing you used seemed to imply that there had been actual open discussion, and forgive me for making that particular inferrence. It just seems that this is a little big to be sorted out via private messages and I personally see nothing wrong the with actual currency as it is.

If you wanted to amend the history section, we have a perfectly usable icon that lets someone add new content to an existing entry as I am sure you are aware. There was hardly a need to try to overhaul something that would negatively affect so many entries, regardless of what the history table needed to say.
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« Reply #10 on: 11 July 2012, 05:58:40 »

I really like Talia's revision. The old entry needed beefing up considerably.

However, the magic detection makes no sense at all. Wave a piece of enchanted wood over some coins to catch the forged ones? I am passably familiar with Ximaxian magic and no method I can think of would do this.

Magic coins sparking before a storm? Metal too shiny? Any competent earth mage could forge a coin easily enough I think.

The only security against such would be for coin makers to keep the methods a top secret process (such as the stamp of the various heads and images on the coins). So a magic forged coin would look slightly "off" compared to a real one since a mage likely would have a harder time stamping the fine detailed  images using magic alone.
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« Reply #11 on: 11 July 2012, 07:04:29 »

@Valan:

There was no discussion via PM, Valan. The task I offered to do was/is to write a small piece of history, to bring in form what was set up some years ago by a group of Santharians at Santhmoot II. You will find ithere.

The actual task was to bring this sentence to life: (I posted this already above, but for your convenience here again)

Quote
King II (Cultural King)
- First steps from a patronized system to a guild system, mainly to control magical power, first official dependencies of Ximax are instituted in other major towns, testing and teaching
- Standardization of Currency ("Golden" Age)

I asked Art what to do and , if I could rewrite the current entry, because I saw no way to only 'add' something. Maybe I said only: We have to do something with it, and Art said yes, it is quite old.

So I read it and reread it and stared at it and went to bed with it, until I found a solution. It was more work than expected, but I was content with the preliminary outcome. Though a bit unhappy that not much of Judy's old entry stayed as it was worded. The ideas nevertheless. And I hurried to post it before I would leave. And I knew, there would come a lot of changes, but I wanted to have the idea out. And see, if it is ok.  

Btw, that exclamation mark means : Open to discussion. You seem to think, that when I post something, I want to have it this way and not otherwise. Of course I need some time to give up an idea I found nice , but when the bards shall stay, then there will be surely a solution.

You had no problems with Mina revising it much more thoroughly than I intended to?

Ok, "End" and good night
« Last Edit: 11 July 2012, 07:06:21 by Ta'lia of the Seven Jewels » Logged

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Jasper
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« Reply #12 on: 11 July 2012, 12:30:29 »

Just 2 sans (oh, pun.) on some thoughts that occurred to me;

Changing up the currency seems to me like a big but not insurmountable task; I'm with Talia on not shutting it down on principle, and that to integrate Lysarian properly a change of some sort could be viable.

One key factor that needs to be discussed in context is the actual minting of the coins. We're throwing out complex designs, 10 sided mithral coins, and facial details that reflect a high level of craftsmanship; enough that the difference can be recognized between various Santharian celebrities who are not necessarily known widely province to province! And this is all done purportedly without magic. I'm going to go off on a tangent, if you'll pardon me. Minting coins coins throughout the Terran world gave rise to a variety of methods. Hammered coins were made with something called a die, which is a piece of metal that had the inverse image of the coin on it.  Flat pieces of metal were placed between 2 of these, and a coin was hammered out, and then through various metalworking techniques honed down to a roughly circular shape. These dies could be used for roughly 1000 coins before breaking and needing replacement. At least until the waterwheel and Mills, this was the common method in Europe. Once milled coins arrived they could be made more perfectly rounded. In Asia, they used use Coin casts. or molds; pour heated metal into mold, let it cool, out pops your coins.

We would need to borrow/combine/define a method for minting our Santharian coins, specifically with such intricate faces. Perhaps Lysarian is responsible for changing this method from say, using Dies, to instead using a Mill (we've had waterwheels since 5,000 b.S. according to the entry?!?! that's a long time to have mechanical power sitting around with no more advanced development. It was invented around the year 0 by the Greeks/Romans. We've had it for 2100 years, the Santharians for 6500. Ummmmmm.... the humans in Santharia seem a bit slow :P ), or maybe Lysarian decides to have coins minted using Coin Casts. Or maybe we get a new method entirely! Maybe we can get away with saying that the method is secret to protect it from forgeries. I don't know, and I know I'm drawing a lot of comparisons to Earth and I don't want to imply that we HAVE to follow the same steps in Santharia as the Ancient Greeks through the Middle Ages did. Nevertheless, we need some type of methodology, IMHO.


On the issue of the bards, I have to agree with Talia to some extent that it seems strange to have bards/artists be cast on the coins; especially local ones. Truthfully, someone living in Thalambath will have likely never heard of a local or even provincially-known figure or hero up in Carmalad. And yet, if coins are minted in Carmalad, some will EVENTUALLY circulate to Thalambath. If I was a commoner living there, and I saw the face of some unknown lady on the back of my San, I'd throw it out as being a fake. I'm not sure that minting coins in ever-smaller subdivisions of the kingdom is the right answer, and that perhaps a "Treasury" of sorts in Santhala is the right answer. More standardized coin faces, less confusion, less local-ness. I'm all for the Goldhead and the Goldsan; everyone using such valued coins can be expected to recognize those faces. I'm even comfy with the Silverbard with Judy's lovely face. Where I struggle is with the "local celebrity" or "local duke" of some of the other coins. What about just, say, the coat of arms of the capital of the province or something, if it wasn't minted in Santhala? I'm not sure I'm dead beat tired and I'm just spitballing here, but it seems like we have a lot of face-design options.


Of course, this is all contingent on the fact that certain practicality issues, require an overhaul of Judy's entry, as I see it. Not something I ever like supporting.  undecided

It is a sticky situation, and hopefully I've successfully made it even MORE complicated!  ;)



EDIT: Something tells me this will be somewhat incoherent. I'm so tired my eyelids are barely open, I'll try and be clearer tmrrw.

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Mina
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« Reply #13 on: 11 July 2012, 13:32:18 »

Quote
I'm sorry, I didn't know you were workign on it
No, not really.  Sorry if I wasn't very clear, but I was basically saying that I had might have done it after I finished some of my other projects if no one else had done it by then.  I haven't started working on it and probably wouldn't have for quite some time.  So I don't mind you doing it.   :)

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The only solution would be, that they are not allowed to change the metal content of the coins.
Well, yes, but what I was asking was, is the Santhran currently powerful enough to enforce such a law? 

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What about doing this entry together? Currently I'm only interested in the part Lysarion did . It doesn't have to be done now, as long as I know, what to write in this history entry. Could well be, that other things happen later.
Hmm, maybe I could come up with some ideas.  Are there any other people I should be aware of besides Lysarian?  And how much power do the recent Santhrans have compared to the Thanes? 

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The magic - I simply forgot it. I wanted to ask our current mages, if this is ok as it is, it seemed a bit outdated to me as well.
Regarding magic, I think that the explanations sound strange.  If we want to mention magic at all, I think it should be enough to say that magically forging coins is too difficult and not really worth the effort.  It certainly doesn't sound like something easy to me.  Any mage who wants to forge coins could probably do it a lot more easily with non-magical methods.  And mages who are able to do it magically are probably quite powerful and therefore most likely have some sort of well-paying job anyway.  Of course, the common people are not familiar with magic, so they might not know this, which could have interesting effects.  Perhaps coins minted by Ximax are relatively unpopular in most places due to people worrying that they might be magical forgeries? 

Quote
And yet, if coins are minted in Carmalad, some will EVENTUALLY circulate to Thalambath. If I was a commoner living there, and I saw the face of some unknown lady on the back of my San, I'd throw it out as being a fake. I'm not sure that minting coins in ever-smaller subdivisions of the kingdom is the right answer, and that perhaps a "Treasury" of sorts in Santhala is the right answer.
Well, apparently it was not very unusual for coins minted in medieval Europe to circulate throughout the continent, well beyond their country of origin.  So I don't think this is a serious problem.  The people depicted on the coins might not be familiar, but I'm guessing that the coins themselves probably were, as long as they were not very obscure ones. 
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« Reply #14 on: 11 July 2012, 14:50:17 »

I would have the same problems if Mina had brought this idea seemingly out of the blue as well.
My issue is mainly with the changes to accepted and already widely used data (the names of the coins) and the sudden appearance of this revision. But all that aside, I suppose it's time to address problem yes?

As far as the problem of coins not being recognized, remember that we had several different kingdoms before Santharia was formed. Foreign coinage may be subject to a little more scrutiny than the average coin, and may have a reduced values in the eye of a local merchant but that assumes that the coin is worth what it is made of rather than a form of promissory note or token.

If the value of the coin is in its physical worth (the value of the coin is the value of the metal its made of) then you should still be able to buy goods and services on the value of that metal, regardless of the name or face which is on it. After all, it's still gold. Gold rushers would barter for supplies with gold nuggets. And this system might allow for money changers who specialize in determining the value of coins (and the sort of underhanded shenanigans that go with it). Say changing enthronian coins to vardynians so it would be easier to do business in Voldar. And I imagine there's a great deal of questioning as to whether or not the person in front of you might be deceitful enough to be using fake coins.

Trade transactions of course, might not be using coins, but likely goods for goods. A trading ship wouldn't be bartering for shiny coins after all (or at least not all for shiny coins), but goods that could be sold back at home. Furs for muskets or alcohol, silks for spices or even salt (which is worth gold, in the right situation) livestock for feed, feed for livestock, ore for wood. That's even why we have a system to determine the value of gems. I could see a thergerim choosing to barter in brights worth of metal or gems rather than counting coins.

Now, if the metal is deliberately adulterated (alloyed) or a simple placeholder (brass instead of gold) then the value of the coins is backed by a system of belief. The belief that a single coin of course, has value. The gold standard for instance says that the coin is worth a certain amount of gold, held by the state and represents the value of that gold when traded, but that's getting a little complex.

As far as whether or not the Santhran can enforce the standardization of currency, I don't think it would be purely the Santhran who does so, but the provinces themselves, the Thanes, at the behest of the Santhran. Perhaps with the intent of facilitating trade between provinces? After all, if everyone is using money with the same value then buying things with coins from another province becomes less of an issue. It might be why the designs are standard as well. If the coins have the same shape and weight, it's easier to recognize them, regardless of what is on them.

There's also the old problem of counterfeiting. Shaving the edges off of the coin (clipping), covering wood or lead with precious metals, or even painting it, mixing base metals with the precious metals...

I think I've gotten a little off topic here. So I'll end the post and come back the matter after I've actually gotten some sleep buck
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