By John F Chown, Forrest Capie
This booklet offers an in depth and amazing historical past of cash from Charlemagne's reform in nearly AD800 to the top of the Silver Wars in 1896. It additionally summarizes 20th century advancements and locations them of their old context.
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Additional info for A History of Money: From AD 800
This time coins were accepted only by weight and the mint charged a very high seigniorage of 13 pence out of 240. There was again no change in the weight standard and the whole loss fell on those who were left holding 26 A HISTORY OF MONEY clipped or otherwise below weight coins. Many new country mints were opened: Richard and the King shared the substantial profits. Scotland followed this change three years later. The first coinage of Alexander III (1250) also adopted the voided long cross, but retained the Scottish characteristics of having the king’s head in profile with stars or mullets in the reverse angles.
7d). £149,287 was coined, at a profit of some £32,500. As subsequent practitioners of debasement or inflation as a method of Government finance have discovered, the first small step is profitable, but the profits come less easily once people notice what is going on. ) Successive steps have to be larger and larger, and the profits smaller and smaller. A year later Henry, by the indenture of 27 March 1545, (the fifth coinage) reduced the fineness of the silver to 6 ounces and the gold to 22 carats.
Election was in practice indirect: the populace elected the Ducal Council, which nominated the Doge subject to (formal) popular confirmation. Political power was in fact in the hands of the rich, mercantile families, and a century later the powerful ‘serrata’ of the Great Council was to become closed and hereditary. Some 1200 adult male nobles (out of a population of 120,000) thereafter formally dominated the state. These were traders, bullion merchants and bankers rather than the traditional landowning aristocrats, they were all in a position to see that debasement or devaluation, or the raising of the seigniorage on a particular coinage might in the long run do less to increase the government revenue than would Venice’s reputation as an international trade center…the loss or gain in general revenue from the turnover on the Rialto, consumption of wine in the taverns, and other incidentals of being a world market weighed against a variety of other considerations in determining policy.