Thursday, 13 September 2012

The Currencies of the Empires

Before the Summoning, each Empire in Kaelaross had its own currency that was the standard across each empire.
Toutatian coins were
  • Platinum Crowns
  • Gold Marks
  • Silver Shillings
  • Copper Pennies
Bellenosian coins were
  • Platinum Doubloons
  • Gold Ducats
  • Silver Florins
  • Copper Centimes
Bursian coins were
  • Platinum Eagles
  • Gold Hawks
  • Silver Ducks
  • Copper Sparrows
Telthian coins were shaped as they were named: 
  • Platinum Hexes
  • Gold Pentagons
  • Silver Squares
  • Copper Triangles
All of these coins were approximately the same weight (1/10th lb) and in other posts (particularly Dungeon of the Month where treasure is detailed) you can use the Imperial currencies to describe coinage. 
The value of precious metals between Empires was about the same, and during peace, merchant would accept foreign Imperial currency with only a small (10%?) exchange rate. Alternatively, ingots of metal were used instead - the value of the coins was not so much because they had been minted by any particular treasury so much as the value of the raw metals, such as the gold. Ingots of 100 coins-worth (10lb weight), 200 coins worth (20lb weight) and up to 500 coins worth (50lb weight) were all used, and as long as the traders could trust the weight and purity of the ingots they saved a lot of coin-counting.  
Promissory notes of payment were never widely used, but were sometimes issued by individual merchants or bankers, rather than governments. Since the collapse of the Empires and much of civilization, these promissory notes are little more than curiosities - it would be rare for one to be honoured and cashed in. 
There were instances of locally minted currency within provinces and conquered territories, particularly when the culture remained distinct from the rest of the Empire. These local currencies need not be in the form of precious metals. The use of gems, clay tablets, livestock or iron coins with promises of payment stamped onto them have all been used. Some of these are really more like barter than money, particularly livestock. 

These days, 50 years after the Summoning, the Imperial currencies are still in circulation, but surviving realms like Teiglin, Klantorr and the Confederacy of the Ten Peaks are producing their own along side Imperial coins, often melting and reminting coins that come into their coffers. 

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