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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;
3 occurrences of jefferson cyclopedia
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5409. MONEY (Metallic) Gold and silver ratio.—
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3 occurrences of jefferson cyclopedia
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5409. MONEY (Metallic) Gold and silver ratio.—

The proportion between the
values of gold and silver is a mercantile problem
altogether. It would be inaccurate to fix
it by the popular exchanges of a half Joe for
eight dollars, a Louis for four French crowns,
or five Louis for twenty-three dollars. The
first of these, would be to adopt [336] the Spanish
proportion between gold and silver; the second,
the French; the third, a mere popular
barter, wherein convenience is consulted
more than accuracy. The legal proportion in
Spain is 16 for 1; in England 15 1-2 for 1;
in France, 15 for 1. * * * Just principles
will lead us to disregard legal proportions altogether;
to enquire into the market price of
gold, in the several countries with which we
shall principally be connected in commerce,
and to take an average from them. Perhaps
we might, with safety, lean to a proportion
somewhat above par for gold, considering our
neighborhood, and commerce with the sources
of the coins, and the tendency which the high
price of gold in Spain has, to draw thither
all that of their mines, leaving silver principally
for our and other markets. It is not
impossible that 15 for 1, may be found an
eligible proportion. I state it, however, as
a conjecture only.—
Notes on a Money Unit. Washington ed. i, 168. Ford ed., iii, 452.


In the Ford edition the text reads, “would be
about the Spanish proportion”.—Editor.