Geases & Gold

From: ian (i.) gorlick (
Date: Thu 25 May 1995 - 00:10:00 EEST

David Cake was inquiring about double tithing for Humakti Swords: I think that you are correct in saying that doubling it for Swords makes no sense, this was obviously intended to apply to initiates. For a Sword who already gives 90% of time and income to the cult, he can't really double his contribution. I would say that he would have to take on some special burdens of poverty or asceticism. This would have to be negotiated to ensure that the sacrifice is a serious matter. Things like fasting one day a week, or not being allowed use of fire or sleeping under a roof for one week a season, etc. If you want to make it harder insist that he has to go out and kill so many of a certain cult enemy every season, a blood sacrifice instead of a cash sacrifice.

Mike Dawson made some comments about gold coins: I seem to recall making some measurements a many years ago. A nickel or a quarter was reasonably close to 10 grams. This is much larger than many ancient coins. On the other hand I find that people have a better feeling for things if Gloranthan coins are similar in size to what they use every day. (Note that a gold coin will be significantly smaller due to its higher density).

I agree that " value of a coin of X grams = 2X the same raw metal" is not a very good rule. I would expect there to be some advantage for minted coin. The receiver knows the assay of the coin, something he can't be sure of for raw metal (if there are a lot of counterfeiters about then this is not true or if the regime has been issuing debased currency). The weight is reliable for the minted coin (unless the coins have been shaved). The coin will be more convenient for most dealings, only professional traders will be in a position to comfortably deal in raw metal. So, assuming that the coins are believed to be true in assay and weight, I would expect them to be accepted at a premium of 10-20%. If there is a lot of counterfeit about, or the currency has been debased, or the coins are visibly shaved, then the coins will probably be accepted at a penalty. The big question is: How much of this sort of stuff will contribute to Maximum Game Fun? If your players like to worry about this kind of detail, then go nuts with different mintings and counterfeit. Most players will probably prefer to avoid this so stick to a simple formula, like take it at par or at a 10% premium.

End of Glorantha Digest V1 #291

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