Off the Beaten Hack
Though the inhabitants of Kandaaria prefer bartering as their primary means of trade, most use coins as well. Coinage has largely taken over from barter in most southern settlements. Northern tribesmen are less likely to carry coins and some even take offence at the idea of buying goods rather than exchange for mutual benefit.
The five types of metal coin mentioned in your HMb book (p129) are all represented in the currency of the Kandaaria. Below is detailed each coin type along with it’s colloquial appellation (colloq.), common abbreviation (abbr.) and silver piece value (spv).
Bronze Pieces | colloq. Bits | abbr. bp | spv 1/100
The lowest denomination coin is the bronze ‘bit’, produced only by local chiefs to assist the daily trade of the people under their protection. Bronze pieces are small beaten coins with a central punched hole to ease carrying, typically on a length of leather cord knotted at each end (also a handy improvised weapon if a deal goes sour).
Copper Pieces | colloq. Clubs | abbr. cp | spv 1/10
The most common Kandaarian coin in circulation are copper ‘clubs’. These are the smallest denomination of coin issued by the crown, although the vast majority of clubs are minted by chiefs since the king has little use for such low value currency. Like bronze bits, copper pieces are used for many day-to-day purchases.
Silver Pieces | colloq. Spears | abbr. sp | spv 1
More common amongst the middle classes is the silver ‘spear’, minted by the king and his chiefs alike. Permission is not required for chiefs to issue silver coinage but annual records must be submitted to the crown accounting for local currency. The silver piece is often the highest denomination of coin most Kandaarians will ever see.
Gold Pieces | colloq. Swords | abbr. gp | spv 10
Most gold ‘swords’ are minted by the crown, but with royal permission Kandaarian chiefs may issue their own gold coins. Permission is rarely refused however, since the ability to produce high value coins locally helps keep the economy running smoothly. Plus of course it is far easier for the chiefs to deliver their taxes and tributes in smaller numbers of higher denomination coins, than having to cart chests of silver, copper and bronze coins to the king.
Platinum Pieces | colloq. Crowns | abbr. pp | spv 100
Only the king has the authority to issue platinum coins, a fact reflected in their common nickname ‘crowns’. These rare coins tend only to be used by the upper classes as only they can afford such goods and services that demand so high a price. It is said that the king occasionally travels his realm incognito, and that any vassal who should recognise and challenge him will be rewarded with a platinum coin (a small fortune to most).