'Old Money' in the 'Pickwick Papers' - for interest

Shaun
Dozens Disciple
Shaun
Dozens Disciple
Joined: 4:09 PM - Aug 02, 2005

9:34 AM - Sep 16, 2018 #1

Stephen Jarvis, who met Arthur Whillock of the DSGB and discussed base twelve with him, is the author of the novel "Death and Mr Pickwick', and has sent me this email:

On his Facebook page he has written:

"Another thing which separates the modern world from the world of The Pickwickians is the monetary system. A copy of a Pickwick serial part published in 1836-7 cost one shilling, and a shilling consisted of twelve pennies. Those of us of a certain age still remember shillings - indeed, the twelve-based system of currency lasted until 1971. And even today, you occasionally hear the slang term for a shilling - 'a bob' - in expressions like "He's worth a few bob", referring to someone with a lot of money.

You will notice that I have posted a Guinness ad from a 1939 issue of the London Times, and this refers to both Pickwick and a threepenny coin. This really gets to the advantage of a twelve-based system. Three pennies made exactly a quarter of a shilling; now add another penny, and you get exactly a third of a shilling. In other words, a twelve-based system is easily divisible, which is useful when you are buying fractional quantities. Well, when I was writing about unusual leisure activities, I met the Dozenal Society, who see the general advantages of the number 12. And today I have posted the article I wrote about them, over twenty years ago, which appeared in my book The Ultimate Guide to Unusual Leisure, reprinting a piece I wrote for the Daily Telegraph. And I have just discovered that the society is still in existence - check out their website at: http://www.dozenalsociety.org.uk/"

(I have quoted the above text from his facebook page as, for some reason, the facebook link is not accepted in this post.)


"If your members should wish to find out more about Death and Mr Pickwick then further information is at www.deathandmrpickwick.com  The novel requires no previous knowledge of The Pickwick Papers, or any other works of Dickens.  Death and Mr Pickwick has received a lot of critical acclaim - here, for instance, is the review in The Independenthttps://www.independent.co.uk/arts-ente ... 56163.html

Best wishes

Stephen Jarvis"
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Neme5is
Casual Member
Neme5is
Casual Member
Joined: 8:17 AM - Sep 29, 2018

5:56 AM - Oct 01, 2018 #2

Fascinating stuff. I read the Pickwicks some years ago - and the money bits were confusing, to say the least, even for a 'colonial' whose country used to use £sd. Well, another half-gross of years and how many will be left who actually used that coinage?
Your (UK) money is losing value all the time (so is ours) and I can envisage a new unit to drop a naught or two. You might have a new dose of inflation coming if the experts are right about the Brexit business!
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Shaun
Dozens Disciple
Shaun
Dozens Disciple
Joined: 4:09 PM - Aug 02, 2005

8:53 AM - Oct 01, 2018 #3

Even if the government (which I name with all due respect) hadn't knackered the currency, the inflation they let loose by giving in to the unions demands for higher pay would no doubt have wiped out every coin under the 3d, or maybe the 6d; and this would have erased the dozens part of the money system.
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Neme5is
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Neme5is
Casual Member
Joined: 8:17 AM - Sep 29, 2018

7:49 PM - Oct 01, 2018 #4

Shaun wrote: (which I name with all due respect)
Very apt. Quem honore causa nomino.
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Kodegadulo
Obsessive poster
Kodegadulo
Obsessive poster
Joined: 11:27 PM - Sep 10, 2011

10:57 PM - Oct 01, 2018 #5

Neme5is wrote:
Shaun wrote: (which I name with all due respect)
Very apt. Quem honore causa nomino.
I think, to quote Cicero, that should be "Quem honoris causa nomino." To quote Thomas Nash, on the other hand, "Quem oneris causa nomino," for it is quite a burden to bear all this Latin on our backs. 😉
As of 1202/03/01[z]=2018/03/01[d] I use:
ten,eleven = ↊↋, ᘔƐ, ӾƐ, XE or AB.
Base-neutral base annotations
Systematic Dozenal Nomenclature
Primel Metrology
Western encoding (not by choice)
Greasemonkey + Mathjax + PrimelDozenator
(Links to these and other useful topics are in my index post;
click on my user name and go to my "Website" link)
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Shaun
Dozens Disciple
Shaun
Dozens Disciple
Joined: 4:09 PM - Aug 02, 2005

6:26 AM - Oct 07, 2018 #6

In the local supermarket yesterday morning I noticed that none of the shoppers in front of me used cash; every one used a credit card, either inserted or 'swiped'. I rarely carry cash myself unless I'm looking for things that don't cost much.
On my last shopping bill the 'average' price per item was about £1.50; and some people had over £100 worth of goods in their trolley.
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