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Guinea


RichardB
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Guest snodgrass

As you point out in the title, a guinea was for many years the name given to the sum of twenty-one shillings or one pound and one shilling (£1-1s-0d) equal to £1.05 in decimal currency.

The first guineas were struck in 1663 during the reign of Charles II. Strangely, the value of the original guinea was set at twenty shillings but, with the rising price of gold, by the 1680s guineas exchanged hand for a value of twenty-two shillings. Eventually the value of the guinea stabilised at twenty-one shillings.

The term 'guinea' was not the official name for these coins. Much of the gold used to produce these early coins originated from Guinea in Africa and the first guineas bore the symbol (an elephant or elephant & castle) of the company supplying the gold. As a result, the coins became known colloquially as 'guineas'.

When gold sovereign coins (equal to twenty shillings or one pound) were introduced in 1817, all the gold coins in circulation were fractions or multiples of the guinea - from the quarter-guinea piece (5s-3d) to the five-guinea piece (£5-5s-0d). The gold sovereign effectively replaced the guinea as the high-denomination gold coin used in Britain.

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As you point out in the title, a guinea was for many years the name given to the sum of twenty-one shillings or one pound and one shilling (£1-1s-0d) equal to £1.05 in decimal currency.

The first guineas were struck in 1663 during the reign of Charles II. Strangely, the value of the original guinea was set at twenty shillings but, with the rising price of gold, by the 1680s guineas exchanged hand for a value of twenty-two shillings. Eventually the value of the guinea stabilised at twenty-one shillings.

The term 'guinea' was not the official name for these coins. Much of the gold used to produce these early coins originated from Guinea in Africa and the first guineas bore the symbol (an elephant or elephant & castle) of the company supplying the gold. As a result, the coins became known colloquially as 'guineas'.

When gold sovereign coins (equal to twenty shillings or one pound) were introduced in 1817, all the gold coins in circulation were fractions or multiples of the guinea - from the quarter-guinea piece (5s-3d) to the five-guinea piece (£5-5s-0d). The gold sovereign effectively replaced the guinea as the high-denomination gold coin used in Britain.

Seem to remember there was a time in the 1960's when furniture shops (the sort that are always advertising big discounts on TV these days) always used to quote their prices in Guineas rather than pounds.

I therefore assumed it was just an easy way to stick an extra 5% mark up on your prices with no questions asked. ;-)

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Seem to remember there was a time in the 1960's when furniture shops (the sort that are always advertising big discounts on TV these days) always used to quote their prices in Guineas rather than pounds.

I therefore assumed it was just an easy way to stick an extra 5% mark up on your prices with no questions asked. ;-)

Didn't auctions always sell in Guineas at one time, the extra shilling would be the auctioneers commision

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Didn't auctions always sell in Guineas at one time, the extra shilling would be the auctioneers commision

Yes exactly, a commission.

You paid in guineas as though they were pounds which meant that someone was making an extra 5% out of you :(

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Yes exactly, a commission.

You paid in guineas as though they were pounds which meant that someone was making an extra 5% out of you :(

We used to have Guinea Pigs, but I think that's a different thing lol

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We used to have Guinea Pigs, but I think that's a different thing lol

We once had over 30 guinea pigs due to a mix up with their sex and which hutch we put them in.

Most of them went to the childrens corner at Graves Park rare Breeds centre so they could sell them as pets and raise money to maintain their centre.

Seem to remember we let you have a couple for the kids

Did we get their sexes wrong and give you one of each?

Did you finish up with a whole load of them? :o

What a pity that if you invest a real Guinea in something it doesn't multiply as fast (not at todays interest rates at least) :(

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