Jump to content

Money in Orlanthi Society


azrooh

Recommended Posts

Specifically in rural areas. I figure in most pre-modern rural areas exchange would be handled on an informal system of credit ('I'll scratch your back now, but expect me to ask you to scratch mine later'), but then most pre-modern rural areas don't have a god of commerce - much less a god of commerce that holds weekly markets.

How do you handle this in your Glorantha?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 55
  • Created
  • Last Reply

In Britain for a very long time taxes were reconciled by taking a stick and marking it for a transaction and then splitting it.  The grain of the wood was the perfect way of determining the stick's twin for the reconciliation, as the stick would only join perfectly with its own other half, just like a fingerprint.  This meant that the transaction was very hard to counterfeit the amounts in question.  This system of reconciliation could also be used for contracts, along with witnesses.  While this isn't officially used in Orlanthi society, it is such a good system, it probably should be.  It was in place from the dark ages until the 1700s, because if a system isn't broken don't fix it.

On the other hand, the informality of transactions is what leads to feuds.

Currency really only becomes an issue for the Orlanthi when there is a kingdom and that kingdom decides to issue currency, and even then, most of that currency will be for use in urban areas and will remain in the urban areas.

The point about most Orlanthi communities is that trade will be sporadic and weak as most communities are self sufficient, making everything they need themselves.  In an era before kings there will be a "spare grain" trade where people will exchange a surplus for something else they need, but it will be small scale peddlars and cottars trading an extra blanket for a big jar of honey and the like. Now here I will introduce the notion of capital, the means of production and the end products of production too (end products can be traded). Clan Tulas represent an accumulation of clan capital, both physical and magical, but training will primarily be done by one's own immediate bloodline, which will perpetuate the class system, except in cases where someone is particularly dilligent or situations demand remarkable things of them and they have the strength to deliver.  The clan pays people in training and more tangible items of wealth such as livestock, tools, weapons, and worthy items.  More daily goods are traded for on the basis of quid pro quo.

Cities, such as they are represent another accumulation of capital, but it is not Clan capital so much as Tribe capital and even national capital.  Cities trade with the countryside, exchanging finished goods of high quality for consumable produce and raw materials.  Kings like cities as they are a concentration of wealth that is easy to tax, and an accumulation of craftsmen is great as they can be pressed into fashioning weapons and armour for equiping one's armies.  Often it isn't even the job of a king to provide equipment, but a requirement of individuals who want to claim a particular social class to muster with appropriate gear.  If you front a muster with a chain hauberk, decent greaves and vambraces, helm and a greatsword, you're a Weaponthane, for example.  You can probably bet that the individual sporting such gear has earned it the hard way.

Now what role does money play in all of this?  Most people will view metals as inherrently valuable, and there is a sentimental attachment to pretty metals such as gold and silver. The great value of gold lies in the fact that it doesn't tarnish or rust, and is loved as adornment.  Silver is also lived as adornment but it tarnishes (thanks Thanatar).  Metals and gems allow a person to impress others with their social status.  In old stories there is often lavish attention paid to people's personal jewelery and accountrements as a sign of their nobility, and there is no reason to suppose that Orlanthi will be different, and much reason to suggest they will be the same.  So an accumulation of gold and silver, of a pre-measured quantity whose purity is guaranteed by the King becomes a useful store of value.  Money and the royal mint effectively becomes "the king's commodity" and a royal monopoly.  Not always however.  It may well be that other social institutions such as noble families, clans, tribes, temples, guilds, even mercenary companies may decide to mint their own coins.  Sartar has "Guilders" as its silver coins, but there is a good chance that the EWF had different coins, and so forth.  Currency is also useful for trading with people who are not part of your local economy, hence the use of Gold wheels as a common form of coin across much of Genertela.  The crucial thing for currency is adoption and use.  For example, if Isidilian notices that humans are using currency, he may desire to obtain enough of the currency to allow him to get humans to obtain a specific resource he wants but can't easily access.  No mess no fuss, just a coin transaction and suddenly you have some much needed aluminium in return for a few surplus axe heads.

The next issue is probably letters of credit.  These are great, because while bandits may relieve you of your coin or gems, they may not steal your papers, especially if they can't read them, and they are much easier to hide about your person.  Most letters of credit will be made out specifically referring to the individual in question, and can be protected by passwords, encoding, obscure languages, you name it.  What is important is that they represent an exchange of money from one place to another, based upon a pre-existing agreement between to friendly exchangers.  For example, a good humakti can probably choose to turn 1000 guilders into a letter of credit in the Jonstown Humakt temple and use it to buy training and lodging in the Boldhome Humakt temple when he arrives there.  Such a document is probably written in Swordspeech, as non-humakti probably don't understand it, and it is a temple-to temple transaction.  The letter of credit is a sort of proto-cheque, not quite paper money, but from this origin paper money eventually derives, (first in China).

The Orlanthi don't have banks.  You are probably thinking "sure they do; a bank is just a place where you store your money then come and get it out again when you need it."  That isn't the case.  Banks are places where multiple forms of financial transactions are performed, most of which don't exist for Orlanthi.  Banks certainly store money, but they also loan it out at interest, and they will exchange foreign currencies for local currencies, and issue financial instruments such as letters of credit.  Most importantly however, banks are a socially legitimized ponzi scheme, that are legally allowed to issue loans in excess of their cash reserves.  Banks can borrow money from other institutions against the value of the interest due on their loans and all sorts of other shenannigans that are far less legitimate if examined realistically.  Essentially if anyone tried to create a bank in Glorantha  they would probably be tried and executed as a thief and a fraud.  The only reason banks exist in our world is because of a quirk of renaissance history; certain Italian city states were sufficiently corrupt that they thought such a scam should be allowed to exist if they recieved a small kickback for their support in the form of a 3% return on their deposits.  So while the Temple of Issaries will have most financial instruments and exchanges available, they will not have stooped to banking... yet...

Another area of wealth that has not been discussed is land.  Orlanthi land is measured in hides, probably because that is how the land was originally measured out, and possibly how it was originally valued.  At a very fundamental level land is life because land represents the resources necessary to sustain life, and that is why people fight wars over it.  We know from King of Sartar that clans apportion land for various agricultural uses, but allow a certain, often very large amount of land to remain wilderness for hunting purposes.  What is less clear is how much land is apportioned to people for their use.  Obviously social status is important in this.  A noble's family will have more land access than a stick picker's family.  It is likely that such claims on the land are long standing, but exchangeable within the clan, and inheritable.  There is the likelihood that tenancy arrangements will exist in some more civilized clans, where a tenant agrees to farm a plot of land that belongs to someone else in return for a pre-set amount of the crop.  It is also possible that people whose crops fail in such tenancy agreements will be reduced to thralldom to cover their debts.  Land however will primarily be an asset of clans, tribes, and nations, with noble families rising on the basis of land ownership.  Land ownership however entirely depends on one's ability to defend one's claim on the land, in a court or by force of arms, and that it why ownership and defence is a collective effort among the Orlanthi.  Land can be sold, but normally there are strict pre-existing caveats about such things.  For example land can be part of a dowry, but if the land is held in the territory of a hostile clan, it may be wiser to trade it that work it.  Similarly, clans may solve border disputes by gifting land as part of a marriage dowry, effectively washing their hands of a dispute in the process.  On the other hand if the land in question holds a haunted stead, the other party may remain aggrieved etc.

So anyhow that is my take on the matter.  Of course this doesn't talk about how the Orlanthi economy interacts with the Lunars, Solar Economies, the Praxians, Elves Dwarves etc.  

I liked you work on the currency Tindalos.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

56 minutes ago, Darius West said:

I liked you work on the currency Tindalos.

Thank you, but I'm afraid I must disagree with you here:

56 minutes ago, Darius West said:

The Orlanthi don't have banks.  You are probably thinking "sure they do; a bank is just a place where you store your money then come and get it out again when you need it."  That isn't the case.  Banks are places where multiple forms of financial transactions are performed, most of which don't exist for Orlanthi.  Banks certainly store money, but they also loan it out at interest, and they will exchange foreign currencies for local currencies, and issue financial instruments such as letters of credit.  Most importantly however, banks are a socially legitimized ponzi scheme, that are legally allowed to issue loans in excess of their cash reserves.  Banks can borrow money from other institutions against the value of the interest due on their loans and all sorts of other shenannigans that are far less legitimate if examined realistically.  Essentially if anyone tried to create a bank in Glorantha  they would probably be tried and executed as a thief and a fraud.  The only reason banks exist in our world is because of a quirk of renaissance history; certain Italian city states were sufficiently corrupt that they thought such a scam should be allowed to exist if they recieved a small kickback for their support in the form of a 3% return on their deposits.  So while the Temple of Issaries will have most financial instruments and exchanges available, they will not have stooped to banking... yet...

A Ponzi scheme is where you use new investors to pay off old ones, borrowing from Peter to pay Paul, if you will.

Lending in excess of your reserves is something I could see existing amongst the Orlanthi. The favour system seen in King of Dragon Pass, for example. You have issued a favour to another clan, rather than just passing them the resources the favour is worth. If you suffer a famine, and do not have enough food, and your neighbours come to ask for food to repay the favour, you're in trouble. In essence this would be a form of bank run in a palace economy.

Likewise, the temples to Issaries (and other gods) are common places for people to store wealth. If for no other reason than because you will usually not want to travel with a massive amount of wealth on your person (because it's heavy for one.) This is in part what is responsible for the ransoms for various NPCs. You hold them captive, and the temple will use their wealth to pay for their freedom.

We do know from the guide that "money lending, bookkeeping, and banking are rarely used. Only the most advanced or mercantile cultures of Glorantha, such as the Holy Country, the Lunar Empire, or the Safelstran city-states, have entered the economic stage in which these factors become significant." So as you say, many aspects of banking will not be in evidence.

 

I do believe that some form of these economic interactions could happen in an Issaries temple, again because of the problem of payment.

For example, let us take a wealthy Pavisite adventurer. He wishes to buy a chainmail hauberk for his next expedition into the rubble. The hauberk costs 250 lunars, but the adventurer would not be likely to carry it about in person. Nor would he be likely to barter for it (I doubt the merchant would wish to take 5 cavalry sables in trade either.)

He would keep his wealth in the Trade temple, quite likely as a coffer of lunars, under the eye of Issaries. He would go to the armour merchant in the market, haggle over the price of the hauberk, and once they had made an arrangement, they would make the actual trade in the temple, where it could be properly blessed.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that Orlanthi society operates on a mixture of barter trade goods & services, which exists alongside coinage.  I suspect that this hold true for all regions, with barter playing a larger role in rural regions ( which accounts for most of the Orlanthi).

However we do know that coins are minted for a measure of value between the various cults and guilds (hence why they are called 'silver guilders'), and as such this would carry over into day-to-day life, more so in the citadels.

I believe that some of the officials of the Trade Ring may provide business investment services at Issaries temples in the largest urbanised settlements such as Boldhome, Jonstown, Clearwine, etc.

I envision that the Trade Ring would invest in particular business opportunities for a direct share in the profits, so they are considered shareholders in that business venture. I think the concept of open loans (as it exists in the modern world) would be a rare notion in this setting, although I guess that the Trade Ring would occasionally make exceptions.

Some experienced traders (who are independent of the Trade Rings, yet still Priests of Issaries) may operate in a similar fashion to modern day brokers, perhaps seeking favours in payment rather than direct cash back from investments (although that would also likely be appreciated).  A good example of this is Gringle Goodsell from Apple Lane. In the more recent HQ Sartar books it describes Gringle as  having the capacity to sometimes provide open credit loans for those who seek him; inferring that this is an uncommon opportunity to do so, external to the monopoly of the Trade Rings.

I think that one's reputation may often have an impact on things like getting loans or basic services provided, so Status itself should not be ruled out as another form of currency in such a society. Also the notion of Orlanthi Hospitality could be further extended to include a system of Favours, which would also translate itself into a currency of services at times.

Link to post
Share on other sites

One of the definitions of money I like is 'portable power'.  It is a means of transferring value, and simplifies the structures of earlier societies spoken of by Tindalos and Darius.

All well and good, but that doesn't answer the original question.  We are considering a society with different resources to ours - particularly in the field of magic.  Maran cultists can expose a vein of ore for easier and safer extraction than in the RW.  I would expect Earth oriented clans to have significantly greater metal resources than others, with Wintertop as a major source.  Therefore silver coinage would be easier to produce than history indicates.

The Mostali are metallurgists beyond the dreams of either Bronze or Iron Ages, and clack production is simplicity itself. 

In the RW silver and lead often accompany one another in deposits, and if Glorantha follows suit one may expect a thriving trade between silver users and the uz.

Gold is prized  by the Sun Domers, and they could be expected to pay well in silver for any that became available.

For these reasons I would expect silver and copper currency in the form of ingots and coins to be far more common than in our 'equivalent' past.  Wheels should still be extremely rare outside of solar lands, and as for bolgs.....

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Ali the Helering said:

Maran cultists can expose a vein of ore for easier and safer extraction than in the RW.

But Asrelia owns the hidden wealth, not the Maran cultists, and they are less likely to go on spending splurges, being older and even more ruthlessly logical than their female children (we can ignore the male Orlanthi, who are just too emotional to be trusted) .  Better to keep it in the ground under their control than mining it for today (barring catastrophes where the clan or tribe needs cash NOW!). Furthermore, if Maran can mine so well, the mines would have been exhausted during the Second Age when the locals were connected to even more trade-oriented societies than Sartar was during the kingship periods.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think usage of metal coinage is well supported in Gloranthan lore, if it differs significantly from the real world, this is easily explainable by money being a gift from the Gods of trade.


There will be regions where coinage is not as common and alternatives will be in place, but coinage is more common in Glorantha than real world equivalents.

Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Tindalos said:

I wrote up a bit on Orlanthi currency, and why and how they got it.

http://zzabursbrownbook.blogspot.co.uk/2016/03/coins-of-sartar.html

Hopefully it's of some interest.

Nice article, although there are a number of statements I would not accept for my vision of Glorantha.

As far as I am concerned, Kimantor was the Esrolian name for Ezkankekko when he came to Nochet. Not a relative, but the OOO himself.

The Kitori tribute wasn't universally the same. I can't say for certain whether the dwarves ever paid it. Since we are talking about the dwarves of Gemborg who segregated from the OOO's reign early in the Dawn Age, I wouldn't expect clacks but some sort of gems as their means of payment, though.

Silver coins are a regular component in treasure troves unearthed in the Big Rubble, and the Pavis Royal Mint dates back into the Imperial Age as well, so I think there is significant evidence that there were silver coins used by the Orlanthi before the Modern or Third Age.

 

Dara Happan coins flooded into the Dragon Pass region after the conquest of Dara Happa in 450 by the Orlanthi allies of Arkat. A rebellion ended this influx of coins rather quickly, but the concept had arrived.

While this may be too Viking-like in the approach, the real world predecessor of coinage was weight of silver, often objects of silver hacked into small pieces that would be easy to weigh. John Hughes' staves in Thunder Rebels refer to Orlanth or generous kings or chieftains as ring breaker.

In the real world, Lydian coins were introduced to create an easily identifiable, fixed weight exchange medium other than metal weight. After some problems with counterfeiting stamp dies were used on both sides to make counterfeiting harder.

 

9 hours ago, Darius West said:

Currency really only becomes an issue for the Orlanthi when there is a kingdom and that kingdom decides to issue currency, and even then, most of that currency will be for use in urban areas and will remain in the urban areas.

It is often overlooked that about half the Orlanthi, if not more, are living under the rulership of greater powers. Sometimes this may be something of a formality, as with the Wenelian trader princes who are tolerated by Greymane and his sons, sometimes this means serious taxation by rather oppressive overlords, such as in Jonatela, the Lunar Empire (including Sartar and Heortland), or parts of Ralios.

Early Imperial Age Orlanthland may have been the largest self-ruled Orlanthi "kingdom" in the history of Glorantha (although they abolished the post of king in favor for a ruling council of priests). Initially, they collected tribute from Dara Happa, which means they imported a lot of gold, and while they had to pay Arkat's command to the trolls, that was a tax in foodstuffs, and occasionally (if payments were late) in people, rather than normal items of wealth.

The rulers of Orlanthland employed Yelmalio mercenaries, and they had to pay these mercenaries. This means they had to provide some form of currency that those mercenaries would accept. I guess cattle would have worked, but coins are much easier to transport.

9 hours ago, Darius West said:

The point about most Orlanthi communities is that trade will be sporadic and weak as most communities are self sufficient, making everything they need themselves.  In an era before kings there will be a "spare grain" trade where people will exchange a surplus for something else they need, but it will be small scale peddlars and cottars trading an extra blanket for a big jar of honey and the like.

At all times there have been limited resources that would create a need for distribution. Salt is one of these, metal another. Add luxury items like dyes, gems, incense, exotic fabrics, and you will see a trade network. In our world such networks existed already in the Neolithicum.

Specialized skills and the products made from these skills create a second tier of marketable goods, possibly less long range than others. Wine is a typical example of this, but so are special types of pottery, weaving etc.

Finally, agricultural surplus, especially if produced on a regular basis, will encourage trade, and is essential for the formation and maintenance of cities or kings' seats. Agricultural specialisation relies on trading with others to make up for those products one doesn't produce that well, or that efficiently. This can be found in large scale in Glorantha, like the Esrolian grain exports, or in much smaller scale e.g. among Orlanthi clans in Sartar, some of which are predominantly farmers while others are predominantly herders of cattle or sheep.

9 hours ago, Darius West said:

Now here I will introduce the notion of capital, the means of production and the end products of production too (end products can be traded). 

Good point.

9 hours ago, Darius West said:

Clan Tulas represent an accumulation of clan capital, both physical and magical, but training will primarily be done by one's own immediate bloodline, which will perpetuate the class system, except in cases where someone is particularly dilligent or situations demand remarkable things of them and they have the strength to deliver.  The clan pays people in training and more tangible items of wealth such as livestock, tools, weapons, and worthy items.  More daily goods are traded for on the basis of quid pro quo.

I find the intra-clan economy to be quite communist in nature. There are personal possession, and uncontested personal claims on items that are considered a household or clan item, there are household possessions and uncontested claims on items that are considered clan items, and there is clan-owned wealth - land, most of the herds, most of the harvest, most if not all of the additional resources found on clan lands (the King of Sartar game has a few of these, like special green clay, gems, EWF items, or metal).

This wealth is distributed by the Chieftain. The clan ring advises, but the chieftain decides. (If the decisions of the chieftain become too unpopular, the chieftain will be urged, then forced to retire, or the clan will break up.) The chieftain will have to acknowledge traditions, though - breaking a traditional assignment is a bigger deal in clan politics than repelling Obamacare in the houses, and may lead to secession of entire households.

The households of the clan form voting blocks when it comes to distribution of wealth - assignment of land, cattle, sheep, special resources. They also bear a certain responsibility, which may lead to changes in those assignments and the effective wealth and status of a household. Particularly successful households may be able to skim off some of that success before the clan can make claims, and there is no duplicity or shame associated with such behavior, as long as the clan profits from the activities of the household.

Several households may flock together in a stead, and create a bigger voting block to maintain the interests of that stead. There are clans that live together in a single big village, but other clans may live in more isolated steads of a few households each, perhaps the size of Apple Lane.

Then there are the temples and shrines maintained by the clan, possibly by separate steads. While these temples may be steads of the clan, they can have members living in other clans, contributing to the temple wealth. Temple wealth is separate from clan wealth.

Clan economy regards the output of its farmers, herders and craftspeople households as their contribution to the clan wealth. As I said above, successful households are entitled to skim off part of everything exceeding what the chieftain has declared as their fair quota.

An individual requiring say a weapon will first go to their household. If the household has such an item which isn't claimed by someone else, the individual will get it, although it remains the property of the household. If the household doesn't have this item, the individual will have to go to the clan to obtain the item. If the individual has the support of the household, then the household may petition the clan to be given that item, which then is clan property claimed as possession by the household, but subject to the chieftain's approval.

Dowries are a typical case of re-assignment of clan property. The specific constituents of the dowrie are collected from the clan property distributed among the households. The households expect compensation when the clan is receiving dowries from marriage contracts bringing new people (and wealth) into the clan.

Some of the incoming dowrie will be remaining with the person marrying into a household, some as personal assignment, other as household assignment, and the new clan member will bring personal property, too. The rest - especially wealth items like cattle - will be distributed among the households, in the same measure as they are acting as donors when it comes to collect dowries for clan members marrying away.

Marriage arrangements usually involve a lot quid pro quo. Often there will be two-way exchanges of wives, and while actual cows and other goods will move from one clan to another, the exchange may be close to a zero sum arrangement. Any deviations from this enter the favor economy that exists, both between clans and between households and individuals. Clans in more complicated marriage arrangements like Triaties will have to find three-way deals to balance this economy.

This explains some of the upset the fish wives threw into the relationships of the Runegate clans, as mentioned in King of Sartar's Colymar Book.

A fact often overlooked by players of Orlanthi adventurers is that all plunder from clan-based endeavours gets to be distributed by the chieftain, too. While the chieftain is traditionally expected to return special items to the person who obtained them, he is also expected to take a significant share of the plunder to bolster the clan wealth, and to distribute it among the households for safekeeping or increasing the wealth. Including his own household, of course.

A clan member who served some time as a mercenary is expected to share most of the wealth he accumulated in those endeavors with his clan, too - once again through the agency of the chieftain.

A chieftain may delegate such property decisions to his ring or a subset of that ring, usually involving the clan trader and the lawspeaker. These worthies may be advised by lobbyists from the various households, too...

9 hours ago, Darius West said:

Cities, such as they are represent another accumulation of capital, but it is not Clan capital so much as Tribe capital and even national capital.  

True. Cities will have claim to the land they are situated on, and to surrounding lands. They will possess privileges to certain activities, too.

9 hours ago, Darius West said:

Cities trade with the countryside, exchanging finished goods of high quality for consumable produce and raw materials.  

Cities also act as intermediates for more distant trading.

Much of the trade going to the cities (those of Sartar at least) will be part of the tribal taxes or tributes that the tribal kings and queens use to maintain their influence in the city, and to maintain their claim on the revenues the city collects (e.g. from gate tolls or licenses). The tribal kings often are another intermediary in the distribution of those city wares that come in exchange for the tribal tax. Some of these will go to equip the royal retainers, the rest will be distributed to the clans, possibly in exchange for other necessities for the king's retainers and tasks.

Then there is the trade with un-taxed surplus from the clans, performed both by the clan traders and by urban merchants visiting the clans.

9 hours ago, Darius West said:

Kings like cities as they are a concentration of wealth that is easy to tax, and an accumulation of craftsmen is great as they can be pressed into fashioning weapons and armour for equiping one's armies.  Often it isn't even the job of a king to provide equipment, but a requirement of individuals who want to claim a particular social class to muster with appropriate gear.  If you front a muster with a chain hauberk, decent greaves and vambraces, helm and a greatsword, you're a Weaponthane, for example.  You can probably bet that the individual sporting such gear has earned it the hard way.

The king is responsible to equip his direct retainers, the elite force of the troops he can muster. The basic Orlanthi adult needs minimal equipment (hard hat, weapon) in order to be able to vote in his clan or tribal assembly - the war bands and volunteers sent by the clans come with basic equipment.

It is a rare king who distributes additional equipment - one who will be remembered.

Enough for one post, more later.

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Continuing with Darius essay:

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Now what role does money play in all of this?  Most people will view metals as inherrently valuable, and there is a sentimental attachment to pretty metals such as gold and silver. The great value of gold lies in the fact that it doesn't tarnish or rust, and is loved as adornment.  Silver is also lived as adornment but it tarnishes (thanks Thanatar).  Metals and gems allow a person to impress others with their social status.  

Money usually comes when rulers or merchants start hiring mercenaries hailing from elsewhere. Since these individuals face quite a long way home, they require easily portable wealth. Most Orlanthi are happy to receive cattle, but beyond a certain amount and distance, portable wealth becomes preferable.

Then there is wealth that is coupled with additional status. "See this arm-ring? King Tarkalor gave it to me after we defeated the Kitori at Vanntar."

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

an accumulation of gold and silver, of a pre-measured quantity whose purity is guaranteed by the King becomes a useful store of value.  Money and the royal mint effectively becomes "the king's commodity" and a royal monopoly.  

While this is generally true, there aren't many independent Orlanthi kingdoms that do so. Pre-Lunar Tarsh and pre-Lunar Sartar were among these, and the Hendriki kingdom and the Esrolian queendoms had sufficient independence from the Kingdom of Night to do so, too.

When you look elsewhere, this sophistication doesn't often come without external command. The Lunar provinces all use the Lunar silver coin for transactions. Coin shortages can be produced artificially to increase the tax burden, cheapening the products of the subjects.

Most kings create privileges to mints, with rather drastic fines if the products of the mint fail to meet the requirements.

But again, this applies to few Orlanthi kings, but to many foreign rulers with Orlanthi subjects.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Not always however.  It may well be that other social institutions such as noble families, clans, tribes, temples, guilds, even mercenary companies may decide to mint their own coins.  Sartar has "Guilders" as its silver coins, but there is a good chance that the EWF had different coins, and so forth.  

The Orlanthi (and apparently the neighboring cultures as well) have a healthy respect for the integrity of monetary values. This suggests that the making of coins is a magical act of some power. While I am sure that there will be counterfeit coinage in circulation, those counterfeiters would have to be protected by a specialized magic to counteract that. Helpfully, the cults that support criminal activities may provide such countermagic.

The EWF era coins produced by the Pavis Royal Mint are generally accepted as equal to Lunars or Sartarite guilders.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Currency is also useful for trading with people who are not part of your local economy, hence the use of Gold wheels as a common form of coin across much of Genertela.  The crucial thing for currency is adoption and use.

All trading is subject to negotiations about what form of payment is acceptable. To members of a barter economy coins are either ornaments with barter value or otherwise a metal version of a letter of credit.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

The next issue is probably letters of credit.  These are great, because while bandits may relieve you of your coin or gems, they may not steal your papers, especially if they can't read them, and they are much easier to hide about your person.  Most letters of credit will be made out specifically referring to the individual in question, and can be protected by passwords, encoding, obscure languages, you name it.  What is important is that they represent an exchange of money from one place to another, based upon a pre-existing agreement between to friendly exchangers.  

Letters of credit are just a written form of the Orlanthi favor economy.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

The Orlanthi don't have banks.  You are probably thinking "sure they do; a bank is just a place where you store your money then come and get it out again when you need it." That isn't the case.  

The institution which does this is the clan, and every other organisation above that level.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Banks are places where multiple forms of financial transactions are performed, most of which don't exist for Orlanthi.  Banks certainly store money, but they also loan it out at interest, and they will exchange foreign currencies for local currencies, and issue financial instruments such as letters of credit.  Most importantly however, banks are a socially legitimized ponzi scheme, that are legally allowed to issue loans in excess of their cash reserves.  Banks can borrow money from other institutions against the value of the interest due on their loans and all sorts of other shenannigans that are far less legitimate if examined realistically.  Essentially if anyone tried to create a bank in Glorantha  they would probably be tried and executed as a thief and a fraud.  

Casino Town is a well known banking enterprise.

The exchange of foreign currencies and taking and giving loans in certain currencies, with certain dates and rates of repayment, exists at least in my version of the Holy Country. Not sure whether Belintar is to blame for this, or the Jrusteli, or even an earlier culprit (Garzeen?).

Again, such a scheme can be subverted by creating artificial shortages of coinage (provided you have the capital to hoard such coinage).

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

The only reason banks exist in our world is because of a quirk of renaissance history; certain Italian city states were sufficiently corrupt that they thought such a scam should be allowed to exist if they recieved a small kickback for their support in the form of a 3% return on their deposits.  So while the Temple of Issaries will have most financial instruments and exchanges available, they will not have stooped to banking... yet...

The temples of Issaries were subverted by the God Learners. Probably initially more for their spell trading magics than for their monetary influence, but I suspect Garzeen (who was active in Gray Age or Dawn Age Seshnela, if Cults of Prax is to be believed) does know the ins and outs of monetary transfers.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Another area of wealth that has not been discussed is land.

Ownership of land is a matter of clan claims. During the Resettlement of Dragon Pass, the clans established their claims by positioning border markers blessed with their runes. Clan warfare can result in rearrangement of such borders.

There appear to be different levels of land ownership by clans, too - high pastures for instance are claimed by the clans, but aren't necessarily part of the tula that is directly controlled by the wyter. City plots claimed by a clan are another such form of disjunct land claim.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Orlanthi land is measured in hides, probably because that is how the land was originally measured out, and possibly how it was originally valued.  

The hide is the Old English term for the area required to feed a farm. The German term is "Hufe". It may be accidental that the word for a flayed beast skin and a plot of land sound the same in modern English. The German term for the skin is "Haut".

There is of course a real world myth connecting an ox hide with a plot of land - the founding of Carthage by Queen Dido, which consists of leading the term "hide" as in an ox skin ad absurdum. I doubt very much that the Old English authors of the Tribal Hideage or any of their forebears were familiar with that myth.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

At a very fundamental level land is life because land represents the resources necessary to sustain life, and that is why people fight wars over it.  We know from King of Sartar that clans apportion land for various agricultural uses, but allow a certain, often very large amount of land to remain wilderness for hunting purposes.  What is less clear is how much land is apportioned to people for their use.  Obviously social status is important in this.  A noble's family will have more land access than a stick picker's family.  It is likely that such claims on the land are long standing, but exchangeable within the clan, and inheritable.  There is the likelihood that tenancy arrangements will exist in some more civilized clans, where a tenant agrees to farm a plot of land that belongs to someone else in return for a pre-set amount of the crop.  It is also possible that people whose crops fail in such tenancy agreements will be reduced to thralldom to cover their debts.  Land however will primarily be an asset of clans, tribes, and nations, with noble families rising on the basis of land ownership.  

I covered some of this in my previous reply about the concepts of property and possession in Orlanthi culture.

There are tenancy relationships in Orlanthi clans, simply through the ownership of plows. Cottar households usually flock around carl households for this reason. They provide specialist services through cottage industries or otherwise unskilled labor in exchange for benefitting from the plows of those carls.

How Orlanthi receive cottar, carl or thane status as inheritable household privileges is somewhat murky. Individual clan officers like godtalkers or master crafters will be reckoned above their native household status, but there must be some traditional way of establishing the greater status as inheritable. Possibly through providing such officers through several generations.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Land ownership however entirely depends on one's ability to defend one's claim on the land, in a court or by force of arms, and that it why ownership and defence is a collective effort among the Orlanthi.  

True.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Land can be sold, but normally there are strict pre-existing caveats about such things.  

The only instance where I can think of land being sold was during the Resettlement of Dragon Pass, where clans or households that were leaving for the Pass exchanged their claims to the land they used to manage for portable goods like herds.

Other than that, I can see the land being traded away along with the clans in the post 1613 reorganisation of some of the Colymar clans by Lunar authority, and possibly by other external authorities elsewhere. Exchanging land for wealth is contrary to the nature of the Orlanthi.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

For example land can be part of a dowry, but if the land is held in the territory of a hostile clan, it may be wiser to trade it that work it.  

I am not aware of Orlanthi giving away land as a dowry. There is a variant of this in the sacred marriage between the king and a representative of the goddess of the land, but that's on a totally different level.

11 hours ago, Darius West said:

Similarly, clans may solve border disputes by gifting land as part of a marriage dowry, effectively washing their hands of a dispute in the process.  On the other hand if the land in question holds a haunted stead, the other party may remain aggrieved etc.

I see most land exchanges rather as contractual confirmation of conquests. King of Sartar has the option of gifting a splinter clan with some of the clan lands, but that's about the only non-violent transfer of land that is recorded. Sartar's cities might be another such case, but this isn't documented.

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Joerg said:

temples of Issaries were subverted by the God Learners. Probably initially more for their spell trading magics than for their monetary influence

A little busy this weekend pushing out a new exchange-traded fund product but in these precious 30 seconds I would argue that these two wellsprings of Issaries cultural capital are two sides of the same "coin." 

Money is the artificial universal exchange medium, the material equivalent of POW. Once the spiritual effervescence (see durkheim) of free POW is commoditized into various "spells," the marketplace gets to work. Each point of Spell Trading allows free exchange of cult commodity. Naturally God Learners on the make see what this can do for them and absolutely have to have it. A deal the god could not refuse.

IMG the roots of this unique and occasionally controversial technology grow out of Issaries' relationship to the ancient grandmother cults of Esrolia and more immediately his response to death, but this is only incidentally useful to most.

Fantastic thread!

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Joerg said:

Nice article, although there are a number of statements I would not accept for my vision of Glorantha.

As far as I am concerned, Kimantor was the Esrolian name for Ezkankekko when he came to Nochet. Not a relative, but the OOO himself.

The Kitori tribute wasn't universally the same. I can't say for certain whether the dwarves ever paid it. Since we are talking about the dwarves of Gemborg who segregated from the OOO's reign early in the Dawn Age, I wouldn't expect clacks but some sort of gems as their means of payment, though.

I agree on the naming front, I just wanted to leave it ambiguous in this instance.

As for the Shadow Tribute, we know (according to Esrolia, Land of 10,000 Goddesses) that the Gemborg Mostali paid it. The idea was the clacks weren't the payment themselves, but just tokens to represent their tribute, effectively more like promissory notes of copper. Some would indeed be worth gemstones, or alternately magical or military support. (We know that dwarves invented the first clacks. Although their society isn't exactly conductive to trade.)

 

3 hours ago, Joerg said:

Silver coins are a regular component in treasure troves unearthed in the Big Rubble, and the Pavis Royal Mint dates back into the Imperial Age as well, so I think there is significant evidence that there were silver coins used by the Orlanthi before the Modern or Third Age.

Dara Happan coins flooded into the Dragon Pass region after the conquest of Dara Happa in 450 by the Orlanthi allies of Arkat. A rebellion ended this influx of coins rather quickly, but the concept had arrived.

While this may be too Viking-like in the approach, the real world predecessor of coinage was weight of silver, often objects of silver hacked into small pieces that would be easy to weigh. John Hughes' staves in Thunder Rebels refer to Orlanth or generous kings or chieftains as ring breaker.

In the real world, Lydian coins were introduced to create an easily identifiable, fixed weight exchange medium other than metal weight. After some problems with counterfeiting stamp dies were used on both sides to make counterfeiting harder.

I agree that many imperial Orlanthi (as in those during the Bright Empire or EWF) would use proper coinage, but after those empires fell, the reactionary opposition to those empires would result in the coinage being abandoned for proper gelt. Cows, ingots, and other commodity money. Those coins which survive may end up melted down for other purposes, or incorporated wholesale for jewellery. (Such as a necklace made of thonged gold coins.)

Hacksilver makes a great deal of sense as well (It's also not limited to Vikings. The early Phoenician trade with the Greeks was conducted in hacksilver, and it has been suggested that the move to coinage was a response to this.)

Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, David Weihe said:

But Asrelia owns the hidden wealth, not the Maran cultists, and they are less likely to go on spending splurges, being older and even more ruthlessly logical than their female children (we can ignore the male Orlanthi, who are just too emotional to be trusted) .  Better to keep it in the ground under their control than mining it for today (barring catastrophes where the clan or tribe needs cash NOW!). Furthermore, if Maran can mine so well, the mines would have been exhausted during the Second Age when the locals were connected to even more trade-oriented societies than Sartar was during the kingship periods.

However, the Macedonian mines of Philip II had an annual output in excess of 1,000 talents of silver and considerable quantities of gold. Some of those mines were recently reopened since they were never exhausted. The Maranites are comparatively few in number, but could access materials disproportionately plentifully. Aurelia stores treasure, hiding it from thieves, not her sisters.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay I mainly agree with what Joerg has written with a couple of small exceptions.

3 hours ago, Joerg said:

Letters of credit are just a written form of the Orlanthi favor economy.

I think this is an oversimplification.  At one level you could say that coins are merely a minted form of the Orlanthi favor economy.  Letters of Credit can be used to do far more than a favor ever could, including large scale capital transfer.  

3 hours ago, Joerg said:

I am not aware of Orlanthi giving away land as a dowry. There is a variant of this in the sacred marriage between the king and a representative of the goddess of the land, but that's on a totally different level.

I see most land exchanges rather as contractual confirmation of conquests. King of Sartar has the option of gifting a splinter clan with some of the clan lands, but that's about the only non-violent transfer of land that is recorded. Sartar's cities might be another such case, but this isn't documented.

In the case of individuals who are arguing and feuding over a piece of disputed land either between two clans or within the clan, dowry and exchange can be used as a way to leverage out of such a situation.  I say this from an anthropological perspective, having looked at many systems of land inheritance and property rights across various cultures.  I am not suggesting this would be a large scale land transfer.  Using an excuse like a dowry can be a great way to head off a potentially divisive dispute without losing face and appearing generous in the process.  A good clan ring will see the potential benefit in trading a few hides of land for a much larger peace, after all the art of winning wars is choosing your battles.  For example in cases when farmers are arguing over allegedly repositioned field marker stones, and it threatens to develop into a feud with a friendly clan. You wouldn't trade a huge tract of land, only a small amount, as a public peace making gesture.

3 hours ago, Joerg said:

But again, this applies to few Orlanthi kings, but to many foreign rulers with Orlanthi subjects.

Regarding mints, tribal Orlanthi kings probably don't have mints, but national Orlanthi kings like King Broyan, the EWF, the Sartar Dynasty, and ultimately Argrath will definitely have at least one mint.  I doubt Kallyr had time to set one up.  I imagine that most people are pretty pragmatic about their coins provided the size, weight and purity are equivalent.  I would definitley place Orlanthi in the metallist camp http://wfhummel.net/metallismchartalism.html 

Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Tindalos said:

Thank you, but I'm afraid I must disagree with you here:

A Ponzi scheme is where you use new investors to pay off old ones, borrowing from Peter to pay Paul, if you will.

Actually the first banks were set up around jewellers vaults in Medieval Italy and they began to embezzle money to fund new loans (primitive leveraging), until people found out and demanded a cut (3% on deposit per customer).  These banks were relying on new capital input to fund their embezzlement, and that is in essence a ponzi scheme.  It is a fundamental part of credit creation that a fundamentally fraudulent transaction is legalized.  In fact banking is one step worse than a ponzi scheme as most people invest in a ponzi scheme rather than going into debt with one.  

So to use your example a bank takes Paul's money and loans it to Peter while charging Peter interest and re-loaning the same money up to twenty times, potentially even back to Paul, and also re-investing it for their own profit if it suits them.  Its a ponzi scheme, just a sophisticated ponzi scheme with strong legal backing.

Sometimes there is a period when people lose confidence in a bank and the depositors go to the bank en masse to withrdaw their funds.  This is called a Bank Run https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_run.  Coincidentally this is also exactly what a ponzi scheme looks like when it fails.

Needless to say that what I am telling you is also something that people in the finance industry don't like people being aware of.  The true reason why we don't call banks ponzi schemes is because ponzi schemes are illegal unless they are called banks.  Oddly, this legal protection means that your money is almost perfectly safe in a bank.  Isn't that an interesting historical accident?  Thanks Italy.

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Darius West said:

Actually the first banks were set up around jewellers vaults in Medieval Italy and they began to embezzle money to fund new loans (primitive leveraging), until people found out and demanded a cut (3% on deposit per customer).  These banks were relying on new capital input to fund their embezzlement, and that is in essence a ponzi scheme.  It is a fundamental part of credit creation that a fundamentally fraudulent transaction is legalized.  In fact banking is one step worse than a ponzi scheme as most people invest in a ponzi scheme rather than going into debt with one.  

So to use your example a bank takes Paul's money and loans it to Peter while placing both of them in debt and charging them interest and re-loaning the same money up to twenty times and also re-investing it for their own profit if it suits them.  Its a ponzi scheme, just a sophisticated ponzi scheme with strong legal backing.

Sometimes there is a period when people lose confidence in a bank and the depositors go to the bank en masse to withrdaw their funds.  This is called a Bank Run https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_run.  Coincidentally this is also exactly what a ponzi scheme looks like when it fails.

Needless to say that what I am telling you is also something that people in the finance industry don't like people being aware of.  The true reason why we don't call banks ponzi schemes is because ponzi schemes are illegal unless they are called banks.  Oddly, this legal protection means that your money is almost perfectly safe in a bank.  Isn't that an interesting historical accident?  Thanks Italy.

Sorry Darius, but you really need to go to the RW equivalents, not something dating two millennia later. The first banks are Sumerian and Assyrian, not Italian. The Classical Greeks develop the concept, and the Ancient (not Medieval) Romans even further. If you know your New Testament, you may recall Jesus mentioning banking in the parable of the Talents.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Pardon the break in typing.

Classical era China and India also have indications of banking.

Further details on Greece :  Temples were the early banks, especially Artemis of Ephesus, Hera of Samoa and Apollo of Delphi.

By the 2nd century BCE privately owned banks are documented in 35 cities.

By the 1st century CE, Athens Corinth and Patras were accepted centres of banking.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Ali the Helering said:

Sorry Darius, but you really need to go to the RW equivalents, not something dating two millennia later. The first banks are Sumerian and Assyrian, not Italian. The Classical Greeks develop the concept, and the Ancient (not Medieval) Romans even further. If you know your New Testament, you may recall Jesus mentioning banking in the parable of the Talents.

 

There is actually a huge difference between what constitutes a bank and what constitutes a lending institution, or a money vault.  The word bank actually derives from Italian:  

bank (n.1) Look up bank at Dictionary.com
"financial institution," late 15c., from either Old Italian banca or Middle French banque (itself from the Italian word), both meaning "table" (the notion is of the moneylender's exchange table), from a Germanic source (compare Old High German bank "bench"); see bank (n.2). 

Before the word exists there are no banks.  More importantly, there are two crucially important things that older organizations didn't have that define banking; credit creation and the ability to calculate compound interest.  If you don't have either of these processes in place you aren't a bank.

It is interesting that you raise the Parable of the Talents.  There is no mention of banking in the Parable of the Talents, only a master loaning money to servants with varying levels of success.  A money lender is not a banker, as lending money is only one part of what banking entails.  In fact the better example in the Bible that would support your argument is is the back story of why Jesus scourged the money lenders (it had to do with selling shekels for Roman coin at a ruinous rate of exchange).  It was Jesus' scourging the money lenders that caused lending at interest to be anathema in the Christian world until the Medicis discovered a currency transaction loophole that allowed them to lend at interest without offending the church and secured Medici power.

Now temples definitely stored wealth, and may even have issued loans, but they never loaned out money in excess of what they legally owned, and they never tapped into the private reserves of people's funds, as that would have been fraud.  Banks however automatically treat your deposit as their money and proceed to invest it or leverage it into loans, and they are legally able to do this.  Of course you can still withdraw some or all of your money, but while your money is in a bank it is the bank's money to do with as it chooses.  When temples do this they get burned.

 

 
Link to post
Share on other sites

Darius, don't try to argue Biblical texts with a minister of the Gospel. Matthew 25 verse 27.

"then you should have invested my money with the bankers, and on my return I would have received what was my own with interest."

Deposit, interest, ergo banking.

Linguistically, would you argue that the Romans didn't use swords since the weapon was named a gladius?

Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Darius West said:

More importantly, there are two crucially important things that older organizations didn't have that define banking; credit creation and the ability to calculate compound interest.  If you don't have either of these processes in place you aren't a bank,

If these are the prerequisites, the Knights Templars were bankers during the High Middle Ages, although they circumvented the usury problem by charging "rent" instead of interest ("Mortgage your farmland to get a loan and give us the produce until you can pay back the loan.").

Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, Darius West said:

There is actually a huge difference between what constitutes a bank and what constitutes a lending institution, or a money vault.  The word bank actually derives from Italian:  

bank (n.1) Look up bank at Dictionary.com
"financial institution," late 15c., from either Old Italian banca or Middle French banque (itself from the Italian word), both meaning "table" (the notion is of the moneylender's exchange table), from a Germanic source (compare Old High German bank "bench"); see bank (n.2). 

Before the word exists there are no banks.  More importantly, there are two crucially important things that older organizations didn't have that define banking; credit creation and the ability to calculate compound interest.  If you don't have either of these processes in place you aren't a bank.

 

Uh, no, not really. While modern banking came from this, there were lending institutions that existing back in the ancient era. "Credit" existed long before that. In fact, it was an easy concet to accept back in the days where most transactions were done without money. And while compound instrest might not have existed as such, the idea of interest on loans did exist, as was the concet of increasing payments for falling behind. I think that is actually how compound interest got started. For example, lets say someone has a loan out for 100 coins with 10% interest (payment of 10 coins just to break even). He misses a payment, and the value of his debt is increased by the amount missed (10 coing) and he know owns 110 coins. While technically not considered compound interest, the effect is identical. 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Urban Orlanthi concepts of property may need some alteration to the communist approach of the clans.

 

9 hours ago, Tindalos said:

We do know from the guide that "money lending, bookkeeping, and banking are rarely used. Only the most advanced or mercantile cultures of Glorantha, such as the Holy Country, the Lunar Empire, or the Safelstran city-states, have entered the economic stage in which these factors become significant." So as you say, many aspects of banking will not be in evidence.

I do believe that some form of these economic interactions could happen in an Issaries temple, again because of the problem of payment.

I see a strong influence of Argan Argar and Asrelia here, too.

Argan Argar has the special magic of a strongbox for safekeeping of wealth. His cult was overseeing the Kitori tax collectors in the Kingdom of Night, and we know that Belintar relied on Kitori tax collectors, too, at least towards the Volsaxi during their king-less time before Tarkalor's intervention.

Asrelia is the keeper and distributor of the deep wealth. She is also the grandmother of the three earth goddesses. All of this cries out to her being the chief financial deity in Esrolia and the lands influenced by Esrolia.

9 hours ago, Tindalos said:

For example, let us take a wealthy Pavisite adventurer. He wishes to buy a chainmail hauberk for his next expedition into the rubble. The hauberk costs 250 lunars, but the adventurer would not be likely to carry it about in person. Nor would he be likely to barter for it (I doubt the merchant would wish to take 5 cavalry sables in trade either.)

He would keep his wealth in the Trade temple, quite likely as a coffer of lunars, under the eye of Issaries. He would go to the armour merchant in the market, haggle over the price of the hauberk, and once they had made an arrangement, they would make the actual trade in the temple, where it could be properly blessed.

The Pavisite adventurer is in a quite unusual situation. He is taking a sabbatical from his clan duties (and benefits), and will only be able to rely on what he is carrying and what favors he is allowed to collect in the name of his clan (most likely none). He may be able to collect individual favors.

If he accepts to follow a leader into the Rubble, the leader will judge the distribution of any plunder that the expedition makes. During the Lunar occupation, that will be after the Lunars have taken their pick from the loot, most likely without any compensation, if the party is lucky, with the recompensation for the Rubble exploration license. After that, it is the situation of the clan chieftain again, as I described earlier, although with a much smaller clientele.

It gets worse if the adventurer has accepted equipment or provender from that leader. He bought in the company store.

Let's assume he had a fair leader and receives some wealth. He may be able to spend it on necessities, or he may offer service to receive those necessities. If he offers service, he is in a retainer position, following a chieftain. If he pays for everything himself, he is free to go trading for better equipment. (Or he might take up that leader on his offer to receive that equipment before the next visit to the rubble, where such a hauberk can make the difference between a successful return or a sudden career as troll provender.)

 

Your ordinary city-dweller is the real problem, though.

He will probably belong to a household, or head his own household, with a wife, children, possibly other family members (just like a clan household). He may take in apprentices - adopting them into the household, either as temporary family members, or as retainers (much like Orlanthi nobility surround themselves with bodyguard and magician followers).

The household will occupy some urban space - maybe just a few rooms, more likely a separate house, If only some rooms, they will be tenants of whichever landlords has rented the rooms to them. This doesn't necessarily mean that they become retainers of their landlord, although if they become retainers, their lord or leader is compelled to provide them with room and food.

If the urban household is not a retainer of someone else, it will need some other form of legal representation. If the household performs some trade or craft, it will be able to join a guild which will take the role of the legal front towards other parties, but unlike a clan, a guild won't own the property of the household. The households or rather craft shops in the guild will guarantee bond for fellow guildspeople, but usually they won't handle dowries - those are left to the households.

Urban households without the ability to enter a guild structure probably have to become retainers of some prominent lortd or household, or of one of the temples. Without some legal guarantor, city dwellers are left in a lawless limbo, but they may still form associations for mutual protection. Welcome to the world to urban gangs. Some might be something like a trade union, e.g. of dock workers, others will eke out a life as low entertainers, and finally there are criminal gangs.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.


×
×
  • Create New...