On Mon, 2009-04-13 at 12:16 -0700, David Peterson wrote: > So, two questions. First, does anyone have an at least semi-worked > out monetary system in any of their conlangs, and would you > care to explain it? In the days when coins were worth their weight in precious metal, you could get interesting complexities by using two metals. In Britain, from the late Middle Ages to the early nineteenth century, we used both gold and silver, and so had two parallel systems whose relationship constantly changed with the bullion prices. The problem was solved in the nineteenth century by making the silver semi-token: the coins had enough silver to be taken seriously, but not so much that the value of two silver crowns would ever be likely to overtake that of a gold half-sovereign. On Earth, gold is usually worth 10 to 15 times as much as silver, so two coins of a similar size can give a useful ratio of '12 X = 1 Y'. The Chinese system was interesting in having only one coin, a low-value iron token, and using strings of them for larger amounts. Seriously large payments had to be made in silver ingots.