Money in Xian

Coined wealth in Xian takes the form of three major coins. The copper "stalk" is the smallest coin of exchange, named for the rice shoot crudely stamped on one face, the other being embossed with the name and year of the current Mandarin. A copper stalk will buy a fist-sized cake of dubious rice in the market, or a mug of bad beer at a shabby tavern.

The silver "wheel" is stamped with the Wheel of Rebirth on one side, and the image of the current Mandarin and his regnant year on the other. One silver coin is worth ten copper, and can buy a day's prepared food in the market, the work of a dock laborer for a day, or the work of a cheap harlot for a night. Most common workers earn slightly more than this in a day, and a major virtue of a housewife is her ability to stretch it beyond its ordinary compass.

Ten silver coins make one gold "koku", a coin carefully marked with a basket of rice on one side and an intricate pattern on the other. The magical minting-tools that are used to stamp out these coins give each one a different number scribed around the edges of the coin. Should a clipper try to shave the edges, the number will be worn down. When it is no longer possible to tell one number from the next, the coin is no longer valid as currency, and must be turned in to the Treasury to be reminted. Those fortunate enough to be in possession of a koku can afford an excellent harlot's attentions for an evening, the rental of a simple room for two weeks, or a day's steady drinking in a good wine house.

Other states rarely mint their own coins, lacking either the precious metal or the expertise. Most use a mixture of coins from Xian, Nordheim, and the Dwarven holds. For most purposes, these coins are treated as equivalent, though merchants will tend to prefer dwarven currency over Xian's, and Xian's over that of Nordheim. The dwarves occasionally mint platinum coins that are accepted as worth ten gold, but few ever have occasions to see them. Most trade above ten gold takes place in merchant's ledgers, with some amount of goods traded against another commodity.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License