Forum: Research Questions

Discussing: Currency


Specifically, currency in Numenor. And when exactly do they go to market? Is there a special day, like Earenya or Valanya, or is there an everyday open market?

Why, yes, the Market Day in Numenor nuzgul has bitten me. Are the fang marks that obvious? This one I'd like to set during the reign of Tar-Minastir, while his fleet is going to the aid of Gil-galad; one of the OC's might have a relative among the mariners and is going to market while waiting for word. Shopping is such a great stress reliever, I think.

**~ Zimraphel



Re: Currency

Hullo Zimraphel ~

I know absolutely zip about market days in Numenor, and I'm not sure Tolkien ever got so day-to-day in his details of that ancient place. However, if I were to simply take a guess, I'd think an everyday open market would be absolutely in keeping. All during the growing seasons farmers would want to get their produce out for sale, and craftsmen and tradesmen would want to get their wares out in front of the public as much as they could, in the fair-weather months. (Since winter and cold rains would slow growing and selling.)

By the same token, I would imagine that on high days and holidays there could certainly be extra-special activities in the markets, larger crowds, more people selling things, more singers, performers, jugglers and whatnot making the most of the holiday crowds. But I really would expect that since people with things to sell want to make the most of the buying public, an everyday market would be completly acceptable to write. So I would suppose you could have your choice of writing an "ordinary" market day or a holiday market day with more festivities going on.

Them's just my thoughts, of course!

As for Numorean currency, I don't know if Tolkien specified. I'd suppose buying and selling in the market place could be either by barter or coin, however, and perhaps you could simply be cleverly vague by mentioning copper coins or silver coins or whatever in varying sizes, without actually giving away a denomination or worth. In the Sindarin dictionary I find but two words for coins which are used in Gondor: "mirian" which is a silver coin, and "canath" which is worth 1/4 of a mirian. Perhaps those denominations could be old enough to be held over from Numenor? I really have no idea, but those are the only moneys besides "silver pennies" that I can dig up, off-hand.
Cheers ~

~ Erin



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