Handouts regarding Tavern Serving and Gorean Money from Rhiannon’s Class

A paga tavern is a combination bar, restaurant and brothel. In the southern hemisphere, cafes often take the place of paga taverns but are essentially the same type of entity. Paga taverns exist primarily for the pleasure of men, but such pleasures range widely. Men go there to relax or be sociable. They often play Kaissa there. Some taverns even have special tables with a Kaissa board inlaid on the table. Men may wish to watch slave dances or other men duel in the sands. It is also a place where men can learn a lot about a city and hear the latest news. A new visitor to a city can learn much at a paga tavern about his new surroundings. A paga tavern is much more than just a place where men go to fur kajirae. Many patrons may never make use of a kajira in that manner.

tavern interior

A tavern commonly has a number of low tables of various sizes. A man can remain by himself at a small table or party with his friends at a larger one. Men sit cross-legged on the floor at these tables. There may be a sandpit in the paga tavern for slave dancing or battles by the men. There is an area of curtained pleasure alcoves where men and slaves retire for sexual pleasure. There is often a kitchen area, commonly separated from the main area by swinging doors or a beaded curtain. The doors or curtain are easy to negotiate by a girl carrying something. Curtains are used more often than the swinging doors.

In paga taverns, the men are served by paga kajirae, slaves who are a combination waitress and prostitute. For the price of a cup of paga, from a couple tarsk bits to a couple copper tarsks, a man is also entitled to the use of one of the servers. Commonly, the patron will use the kajira that serves him but this need not be the case. He may take a girl to one of the pleasure alcoves for sex. He may keep that girl for as long as he desires or until the tavern closes at dawn. It appears that once the man leaves the pleasure alcove, his time with the girl may be over. There are references that you keep the girl until you choose to open the leather curtains over the pleasure alcove. This prevents a man from stacking up a stream of girls at his table. For each cup a man purchases, he may use a different slave. Once the tavern closes though, any cups not used are lost. You cannot save them for another night. A paga dancer usually costs a customer extra and you would negotiate the price with the tavern owner. The same goes for personal slaves that may serve in the tavern. The price of use in the alcoves will be negotiated with the slaves personal owner, or if the owner is not present the tavern owner. Any exceptions to these common rules must be posted clearly in advance.

alcove

When a girl first becomes a paga slave, it is usually the first two or three nights that are the most difficult. If the girl has not learned properly by then, her throat will likely be cut by an angry customer. Her sales price would then be paid to the tavern owner, plus a token copper or two for goodwill. A girl is considered “paga hot” if she is hot enough to be able to serve as a paga slave. Any girl in the tavern is subject to the discipline of a customer. Bruises on the girls are common hazards of business and tavern owners do not see such as wrong. Some taverns allow you to have your own slaves serve you.

Men may also work in paga taverns. Paga attendants are male employees of paga taverns and they generally supervise the serving of paga by the slave girls and collect payment for the paga and the use of the girls. There might also be a tavern owner, kitchen master, cooks and musicians present.

The pleasure alcoves are often small and their entrances may be circular, about twenty-four inches in diameter. They are commonly stacked in levels and reached by narrow ladders fixed into the walls. A typical alcove has curved walls, and is about four feet high and five feet wide. It is lit by a small lamp, set into a niche in the wall. It is lined with red silk and floored with love furs and cushions. The furs are usually about six to eight inches deep. The alcoves have a subtle but efficient air circulation system, possibly some vent holes high in the walls. An alcove will usually contain chains, rope and a whip. You may also request any special equipment you may desire such as hook bracelets. Some taverns may have different types of alcoves but most are fairly similar.

In most paga taverns, the girls wear diaphanous silks. These silks can be worn in many ways. It may be worn on or off the shoulder, with high or plunging necklines, tightly or flowingly, in halters or G-strings, or brief tunics that may be partable or wraparound. Some tunics have a disrobing loop, usually at the left shoulder, where a tug will drop the entire garment to the girl’s ankles. Only in the lowest taverns do the girls serve naked. It is also common to bell paga slaves, to make them more appeasing. Most paga girls also have pierced ears now. After the defeat of Turia, ear piercing has spread throughout Gor and has become the new fashion.

A parade of slaves commonly takes places in paga taverns and brothels. The paga slaves present themselves one by one, often accompanied by music, for the inspection of the guests. This allows the guests to better decide which kajira they might wish to use in the alcoves later. This may be repeated a couple times during a night so that patrons that enter later can view the kajirae.

dancer

Free women are not permitted in most paga taverns though they are permitted entrance into a few. In some taverns, even families are permitted entrance. In such taverns, efforts are made to promote modesty and decorum. Men in these places try to restrain their natural tendencies so as to not offend the free women. Tavern owners would try to enforce this decorum so that they can maintain their reputation and protect their business. Men have plenty of taverns they can go to where they do not need to be restrained so there is no reason for them to do so in these places. Most free women though would rather not attend such establishments. They do not wish to see their men fawning over such lascivious kajirae.

Slaves who are not paga slaves may enter taverns only if on an errand or in the company of a free person. There are often slave rings on one wall to chain your personal slaves. Most men would leave their personal slaves there. Some paga taverns would permit men to have their personal slaves serve them.

In the majority of taverns, paga is the most common beverage. No bottle or bota of paga is brought to the table. Cups, goblets or bowls are generally filled from a vat of paga behind the counter, from a huge bottle of paga put into a pouring sling, or from bronze vessels carried in leather harnesses by the kajirae. Botas of paga are only used while traveling or camping. Paga is not served warm or hot unless it is specifically ordered as such. Most people prefer room temperature paga. Torvaldsland and Cos are two places that normally prefer heated paga. There is also nothing in the books to suggest paga has a lumpy consistency. If paga was lumpy, it would be very difficult to fill or empty a bota.

Ka-la-na and other wines are commonly served from bottles. Other beverages may be contained in pitchers, small kegs, or bottles. Some of these beverages may be stored in the basements of the taverns to keep them a bit cooler as few taverns would actually have an ice room, especially in the summer or in warmer climates. Amphorae are frequently used to store beverages underground to keep them cooler.

Many online kajirae have learned very specific ways to serve in a tavern. There are web sites that instruct them exactly how to serve each food and drink. Girls then memorize these serves and do it the same way every time. Thus, service becomes a boring repetitive act that is not true to the novels. Service should be as creative as any other kajira action. There are 105 ways just to enter a room, dozens of ways to kiss, and numerous slave dances. Why should food and drink service be performed only by one method? The answer is that it should be done in a myriad of ways. The method of the service should conform to the circumstances. What is appropriate at a formal feast may not be so at a cheap paga tavern.

In a paga tavern, when a slave serves, she is also offering herself to the customer. Thus, she will desire to please the customer as much as possible and make herself as desirable as possible. Gorean men enjoy imaginative and sensual women. Let your serve show your creativity and sensuality. You are selling yourself, not just a cup of paga or wine. Show how well you can move. Accentuate your allure and desirability. Make the customer lust for you. A kajira that could not entice the customers into the alcoves would be severely disciplined by the tavern owner, sold or even killed. You are there to make money for him so if you cannot earn your keep, you are useless to him.

What is required as a part of a serve? There are only a few items that are absolutely necessary. Everything else depends on the situation and location. Generally, the less formal the setting, the shorter and less rigid the serve. But, most serves have these few things in common.

First, make sure that you know exactly what your customer orders. Do not serve him sul paga if he orders regular paga. Do not serve him warm paga if he wants it at room temperature. If you are unsure about an order, ask the customer. Not every Master likes his food or drink prepared the same. If he orders Sa-Tarna bread, ask him what he wishes to go with it. Some prefer honey while others want melted butter. Try to ensure that you are going to bring him exactly what he desires. If you try to guess what the customer wants, you are taking a big risk.

Second, make sure the drinking vessels, serving trays and utensils are clean. You do not need to wash or wipe every goblet you get but at least indicate that you have found a clean cup. Once washed, likely by a slave, the vessels usually hang upside down on racks to drip dry. A quick glance at the vessel before using it will ensure it is adequate. Do not wipe a vessel with your silks. That would ruin the silks and the taverns have rep cloths for such cleaning. A chipped or broken vessel would be immediately thrown out. Also remember that most paga taverns have inexpensive cups and dishes. They would be cheap metal or pottery, not gold and silver that would most likely be stolen. This though would depend on the quality of the paga tavern. A very expensive tavern might have gold and silver cups and dishes but few such places exist.

Third, make sure you kneel when serving. The customer is sitting on the floor at a low table. You need to get down to his level and kneeling is the only proper way to do it. Proper kajirae do not bend over. In addition, kneeling is a proper way to show deference to a man. Kneeling expresses the proper servitude and submission of a slave. A girl would learn how to carefully balance a tray or other accouterments while attempting to kneel next to a table.

Besides these three basic items, everything else is up to your imagination. The most common serve that many kajirae have learned involves cleaning a cup, pouring the paga from a bota into a bowl, holding the bowl low against their belly, running it up their body, holding it for three heartbeats at their chest, kissing the rim and then offering it to the customer. This is not a required serve as depicted in the novels. Some kajirae in the novels did parts of that serve but many others did not. And some parts of that serve did not exist at all in the novels.

The cleaning of the cup and botas were already discussed above. The three heartbeats and the love, devotion and honor pledge never occurred in the novels. Thus it is not a necessary part of a serve. They are online creations only. Holding it low against your belly does occur in the novels but it is not a constant. It is also not a required part of a serve. “Sweetening” the cup is another online creation that does not exist in the books.

Kissing the rim of the goblet does occur a number of times but it is again not a necessity as many serves are done without it. There are examples from the books where paga slaves may kiss the rim twice, or lick it deferentially. Kissing is done primarily as a sign of obeisance, deference to the patron. Slaves would also never sip a master’s drink before serving it. If they were permitted to take a drink from the same cup, they would never drink from the side of a cup where their master has already drank from. No girl in the books ever tested a man’s drink for poison. Poison is not that great of a threat in taverns. It would be an insult to a tavern for girls to be routinely checking for poison.

Long involved serves were more common at feasts where the host is trying to impress his guests. In most taverns, long serves are impractical and unnecessary. Be creative in your serves but do not over do it. Save long serves for special occasions. In a cheap paga tavern, the men simply want their food and drink without some long presentation. The patrons would likely get angry at a girl that took too long to deliver or serve their order.

Most service online is so boring, for the customer and the kajira. Vie for the attention of the customers. Become the most popular kajira in the tavern by being the most imaginative server. You may kiss the rim of the cup or hold it deep against your belly but you may also skip it. Vary how you perform your serves. Make it a true presentation instead of a “canned” service by rote. Make the serve fit the situation as well.

There are a few others matters of tavern etiquette. First, there are no such things as serving furs. If anything, paga kajirae would kneel on the bare floor while waiting in the tavern. In true taverns, the girls would rarely have a free moment to relax. She would be constantly serving customers food and drink or in the pleasure alcoves. Second, when a kajira enters the tavern, she does not need to seek permission or perform obeisance. She should just quietly walk to the serving area and kneel until she is needed. This is partially intended to promote the flow of role-play as massive greetings can be distracting. Third, a kajira should seek permission to leave the tavern. First, she should consult her owner. If the owner is not around, she should ask any other free person present.

Remember, the key to good service, like good role-play, is creativity.

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Coinage:

gorean money

There is little standardization in currency exchange rates throughout Gor. These ratios vary from city to city. The bankers, or literally the coin merchants, try to standarize coinage at each Sardar Fair but their motion never passes. Certain coins though are respected and accepted throughout the civilized cities. These include such coins as the gold tarns of Ar, Ko-ro-ba and Port Kar, golden staters from Brundisium, and the silver tarsk of Tharna.

On Gor, the basic unit of currency is the tarsk coin, made of copper or silver. Each city then decides on the ratio between such coins. A tarsk bit is the smallest unit of currency. From four to twenty tarsk bits equals one copper tarsk. From forty to one hundred copper tarsks equals one silver tarsk. Ten silver tarsks equal one gold tarn disk. Gold tarn disks are also made in double weight. Some coins may be split into pieces to make change. A coin is about 1.5″ in diameter and 3/8″ thick. There is a tarn or tarsk on one side and usually a letter to identify the city of origin on the other side. There is no paper currency on Gor.

The early novels mentioned the existance of copper and silver tarn disks but the later books, especially when discussing exchange rates, omit these coins. If you moniter the appearance of these tarn disks, they begin to disappear from the books as they progress. And the initial books neglect to mention tarsk disks. This seems to be another area where Norman chose to change matters in the latter books. The latter books should be taken as more authoritative in this matter as they are the ones where the issue of coinage is more throroughly described. Tribesman of Gor, #10, may be the last book to mention a copper or silver tarn disk.

To most Goreans, a silver tarsk is a coin of considerable value. A gold tarn disk is more than many common laborers earn in a year. A gold tarn may buy a tarn or five slave girls. Five pieces of gold is a fortune and one can live in many cities for years on such resources. For the most part, many items on Gor will sell for copper tarsks. Business is often conducted by notes and letters of credit. Most cities have their own mints. Coins are struck, one at a time, by a hammer pounding on the flat cap of a die. Coins are not made to be easily stacked. In some cities, such as Tharna, coins are drilled so that they might be stringed.

A coin is a way in which a government certifies that a given amount of precious metal is involved in a transaction. It saves the need of weighing and testing each coin, thus making commerce much easier. But, some less scrupulous people may shave coins, slicing slivers of metal off of them. This is akin to theft and fraud. The coin is worth less than it should be.

Earth – Gor

gorean money system

We need to place the currency system into a perspective that can be understood.
This will give us a better framework to understand prices and wages. An excellent starting point is this quote: “A gold tarn disk is more than many common laborers earn in a year.” (Tribesman of Gor, p.158)
This helps show the value of a gold tarn and it is supported by other quotes. “Five pieces of gold, in its way, incidentally,
is also a fortune on Gor. One could live, for example, in many cities, though not in contemporary Ar, with its press on housing and shortages of food, for years on such
resources.” (Magicians of Gor, p.468-9).
“A golden tarn disk was a small fortune.”
(Tarnsman of Gor, p.191).
The value of silver tarsks is also generalized in the novels.
“A silver tarsk is, to most Goreans, a coin of considerable value.” (Rogue of Gor, p.155)
“My financial resources, the ten silver tarsks,such a sum would last a man months on Gor.”
(Rogue of Gor, p.59)

Let’s try to translate this into U.S. dollars then. If we assume a common laborer made minimum wage or a bit above that, then a gold tarn would be at least between $15,000 to $25,000. For simplicity’s sake, we can average this to $20,000. Now that we have a starting point, we can use it to translate the other Gorean coins into U.S. currency.
If we assume ten silver tarsks equal one gold tarn, then a silver tarsk is worth about $2000.
If we then assume 100 copper tarsks equal one silver tarsk, then a copper tarsk is worth about $20.
If we then assume eight tarsk bits equal a copper tarsk, then a tarsk bit is worth about $2.50.
((Please remember that these are only rough approximations. They give you a relative comparison between Gorean and Earth prices.))

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More Money:

gorean coin

I had every intention of providing an extensive and detailed narrative on the worth of monies and the cost of various items.

For instance, what a particular denomination is worth “A golden tarn disk was a small fortune. It would buy one of the great birds themselves, or as many as five slave girls.” Or the cost of say, a slave girl; “some of the plainer women are sold for as little as a brass cup; a really beautiful girl, particularly if of free birth and high caste, might bring as much as forty pieces of gold.”

However the sheer volume of passages in the Books referencing these things would make this page ridiculously long and when I finally came across this quote, I decided to go a different route.
“A silver tarsk,” said a man.
“Excellent,” said the auctioneer.
This seemed to me an unusually high bid for a raw, untrained barbarian slave, particularly as an opening bid. On the other hand, I had noted that girls seemed to bring high prices in Kailiauk. Several of the girls had gone from the side blocks, for example, for prices ranging between thirty and fifty copper tarsks. In certain other markets these girls, in their current state of barbarity and ignorance, might have brought as little as seven or eight tarsks apiece. These prices, of course, were a function of context and time. (emphasis mine)
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 117
The last sentence is the key phrase – “These prices, of course, were a function of context and time.”

In other words, there just isn’t enough consistency throughout the whole series to state that a slave girl sells for X or a cup of Paga goes for Y.
Money can be a lot of things. But in all cases it is something that has an agreed upon value.
Obviously Gold, [1] silver [2] and copper [3] are well known as materials from which coins are made. As of Book 33, we find that coins are also made of bronze. [4]

But money can also be other things. Sometimes pieces of plates, cups or candlesticks have been used. [5] There is also iron, [6] salt [7] or something as simple as a brass cup. [8] In the Barrens, beads, strips of leather, furs, blankets, arrowheads and bowstrings are used. [9] Also used are millet, rice, silk, coarser cloth, and such. [10] Even slave girls themselves are referred to as currency. [11] There is even a reference to the “coin of the furs”. [12] And steel, it is said, is the coinage of Warriors. [13]

The more standardized money can still be in a variety of shapes and sizes. There are cubes [14] of gold and silver. There are small rectangular bars marked by a Jarl. [15] There is ring money, each ring strung on a larger ring and weighed individually. [16]

Sometimes money is square or a narrow triangle [17] and then there is the irregular, somewhat circular shaped stater. [18] Coins can be, as already mentioned, as different as a ring, to a having a hole drilled in them, [19] to a square [20] or a rectangle. [21]

As far as size is concerned, coins are described as tiny, [22] small, [23] being sifted through fingers [24] to being rather large. [25]

Most Gorean outfits, including slave tunics, do not have pockets. One notable exception to this is the artisan. [26] And slaves are not permitted wallets, or pouches, as free persons, [27] so money is carried in a variety of other ways.

Perhaps the simplest way is to just carry coins in one’s mouth and free persons will do this from time to time. [28]

There is the coin sack or capsule which is tied around the neck of a girl when sent on errands. [29] Slaves will also carry money tied in a scarf about a wrist or ankle. [30]

Sometimes coins are pierced and strung together. [31] A simple sack, usually of leather [32] and sometimes with the owner’s name stitched inside, might be used. [33] A pouch, [34] usually concealed within the robes of a free woman, or slung about the waist or shoulder, of a free man, [35] or worn around the neck, [36] is closed by a drawstring. [37]

It might be noted that those of the Caste of Assassins do not carry pouches but instead carry money in pockets of their belts. [38] Others too, perhaps for security, use belt pockets for their money. [39]

A wallet is also a means to carry coins [40] as is a purse. [41] And sometimes money is just carried inside one’s tunic. [42]

Coins are also used as jewelry, usually to embellish dancing girls. [43] Sometimes they are a pendant [44] or necklace. [45] And coins are used to adorn weapons, saddles animals and slaves. [46]

Money can also be in the form of drafts, checks or letters of credit. [47] But paper currency is unknown. [48]

This is a list of denominations common to most Gorean cities.

Copper Tarsk Bit Beasts of Gor Book 12 Page 77
Copper Tarsk
also known as
Copper Tarn Tribesmen of Gor Book 10 Page 36

Outlaw of Gor Book 2 Page 68
Copper Eight-Piece Assassin of Gor Book 5 Pages 27 – 28
Copper Ten-Piece Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 126
Copper Twenty-Piece Conspirators of Gor Book 31 Page 186
Copper Forty-Piece Assassin of Gor Book 5 Pages 27 – 28
“common” Silver Tarsk
also known as
“common” Silver Tarn Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 76

Tarnsman of Gor Book 1 Page 165
“larger” Silver Tarn Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 488
Silver Forty-Piece Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 157
Silver Eighty-Piece Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 107
Silver Stater Swordsmen of Gor Book 29 Page 132
Gold Tarsk Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 522
Gold Tarn Tribesmen of Gor Book 10 Page 158
Gold Stater Kajira of Gor Book 19 Page 394
Gold Tarn of Double Weight Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 4
I will now address the ratios of value from one denomination of coin to another.

However, again, these values vary so much that there is simply no way to make arbitrary statements.
In fact this is attested to within the series itself at least six different times. [49]

Efforts are made every year at the Sardar Fair to standardize the coins among major cites but so far this hasn’t happened. [50]
The copper tarsk bit is generally accepted as the smallest denomination coin. [51]
Different quantities of Tarsk Bits equal a Copper Tarsk:

4 – 10 Tarsk Bits = 1 Copper Tarsk [52]

8 Tarsk Bits = 1 Copper Tarsk [53]

8 – 10 Tarsk Bits = 1 Copper Tarsk [54]

10 Tarsk Bits = 1 Copper Tarsk [55]

10 – 20 Tarsk Bits = 1 Copper Tarsk [56]

100 Tarsk Bits = 1 Copper Tarsk [57]
Based on one variation of value, 8,000 Tarsk Bits would equal 1 regular Gold Tarn. [58]
Different quantities of Copper Tarsks equal one Silver Tarsk:

10 Copper Tarsks = 1 Silver Tarsk [59]

40 Copper Tarsks = 1 Silver Tarsk [60]

50 Copper Tarsks = 1 Silver Tarsk [61]

100 Copper Tarsks = 1 Silver Tarsk [62]
There are two different sizes, or values, of a Silver Tarsk [63]
Different quantities of Silver Tarsks equal one Gold Tarn:

10 Silver Tarsks = 1 Gold Tarn [64]

100 Silver Tarsks = 1 Gold Tarn [65]
First is the Gold Tarsk usually valued at ten silver tarsks, [66]

then the Gold Tarn, the more common variety of regular weight, [67] which is of more value. [68]

And finally the Gold Tarn of Double Weight. [69]

As of Book 29, there is now evidence of a silver stater. [70]

From the context of the series it becomes clear that ‘Stater’ is more a definition of the type of coin rather than the value. There is no evidence that the Gold Stater of Brundisium is of any higher face value than the Gold Tarn. If anything, there is evidence that they are equal. [71]
The fact that coins were individually hand struck tells us that they would have irregular shapes. No two coins, even from the same city, would be completely identical. The point being, machine minted coins, of which we are familiar today, did not exist on Gor. This reference goes into great detail describing the shape, feel and look of Gorean coins. [72]
There is a coin referred to as an eight-piece and one called a forty-piece. [73] And then there is one called a ten-tarsk piece. [74] From the context it appears these are copper coins.
Aside from the tarsk bit which is created by literally chopped or cutting a copper tarsk, [75] there are also broken coins of larger denominations. [76]
Gorean coinage, being made of actual gold, silver and copper can be shaved or clipped, in other words, debased. [77] So, at times one might make a claim that their coins have not been debased, such as “We offer silver, unclipped silver.” [78]
Due to the fact that both copper tarsks and silver tarsks are sometimes simply referred to simply as tarsks, it is wise to make certain the person to whom you are speaking knows which one you mean. [79]
And one final point, coins have even been used in an insult. [80]

Supporting References

[1] I drew forth five pieces of gold. “This money,” said I to Samos, “is for safe passage for Ar, by guard and tarn, for this woman.”
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Page 15
[2] Certain coins, such as the silver tarsk of Tharna
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120
[3] Hup wildly thrust a small, stubby, knobby hand into his pouch and hurled a coin, a copper tarn disk,
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 13
[4] Yasushi, in his search for missing foragers, had carried but two coins, and of bronze, folded in his sash, and Tajima, in his venture to obtain a slave, had carried but one, of copper.
Rebels of Gor Book 33 Page 348
[5] Many transactions are also done with fragments of gold and silver, often broken from larger objects, such as cups or plates, and these must be individually weighed. Indeed, the men of the north think little of breaking apart objects which, in the south, would be highly prized for their artistic value, simply to obtain pieces of negotiable precious metal. The fine candlesticks from the temple of Kassau, for example, I expected would be chopped into bits small enough for the pans of the northern scales.
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Pages 76 – 77

To be sure, silver, gold, and copper also function as means of exchange in the islands, either in the form of marked coinages or as plates and bars.
Rebels of Gor Book 33 Page 181
[6] Certain jarls, of course, in a sense, coined money, marking bars of iron or gold, usually small rectangular solids, with their mark.
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Pages 76

Then, with a great, sweeping gesture, Ivar Forkbeard emptied the bowl of coins, scattering them in a shower of cooper and iron over the men.
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Page 51
[7] There are areas on Gor where salt serves as a currency, being weighed and exchanged much as precious metals.
Tribesmen of Gor Book 10 Page 208
[8] some of the plainer women are sold for as little as a brass cup;
Nomads of Gor Book 4 Page 57
[9] One bargained, of course, with such things, much as one might with pieces of metal, or, in the Barrens, with beads, strips of leather, furs, blankets, arrowheads, bowstrings, slaves, and such.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 405
[10] “We have a coin for rice,” had said Haruki.
“A coin?” said the fellow, surprised.
“Yes,” said Haruki.
The common means of exchange were in terms of commodities, millet, rice, silk, coarser cloth, and such.
Rebels of Gor Book 33 Page 316
[11] a form of currency; the slave girl is usually in demand,
Tribesmen of Gor Book 10 Page 125

Slaves are, of course, in any event, a form of currency. They are exchangeable, bartarable, vendible, as any other form of goods, cloth, leather, metal, kaiila, tarsk, verr, such things.
Kur of Gor Book 28 Page 181

As you remain as you are, so soft, so lovely, so attractive and desirable, you must expect to continue to face the risks and perils attendant on your beauty, on a world such as this, where it is a common mode of currency,
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 474

women on Gor, in a sense, are themselves money. They are, or can be, a medium of exchange, like currency. This is particularly true of the slave,
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 42
[12] The two guards left, disgruntled. Doubtless they felt cheated. I am sure they made the instructresses pay later in the “coin of the furs,” not that the instructresses would much mind that.
Conspirators of Gor Book 31 Page 212
[13] “Steel is the coinage of the warrior,” say the codes, “With it he purchases what pleases him”
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Page 10
[14] By this time I had followed Harold over to a corner of the courtyard wall, which was heaped high, banked into the corner, with precious metals, plates, cups; bowls of jewels; necklaces and bracelets; boxes of coins and, in heavy, wooden crates, numerous stacked cubes of silver and gold, each stamped with its weight
Nomads of Gor Book 4 Page 251
[15] Certain jarls, of course, in a sense, coined money, marking bars of iron or gold, usually small rectangular solids, with their mark.
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Pages 76
[16] Ring money was also used, but seldom stamped with a jarl’s mark. Each ring, strung on a larger ring, would be individually weighed in scales.
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Pages 76
[17] “Open your mouth,” I said.
She did so, and I drew forth a tarsk bit from my pouch, this one not a separate coin in the sense of a round or square coin, but a piece of such a coin, a narrow, triangular, chopped eighth of a copper tarn disk, and placed it in her mouth.
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 29
[18] I opened his wallet. It was filled with golden staters, from Brundisium,
Players of Gor Book 20 Page 67
[19] Some Gorean coins are drilled, incidentally, to allow stringing, the coins of Tharna, for example; Turian coins, and most others, are not.
Nomads of Gor Book 4 Page 251

Many of these coins, not all, were perforated in the center. One threads one or more such coins on a string, the string fastened about the bottom and top coin, or loops a string through several coins, and ties the loop shut above the top coin.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 404
[20] I drew forth a tarsk bit from my pouch, this one not a separate coin in the sense of a round or square coin Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 29
[21] coined money, marking bars of iron or gold, usually small rectangular solids,
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Pages 76
[22] I placed another tarsk bit in his hand. He put these two tiny coins in a small, shallow copper bowl before him.
Explorers of Gor Book 13 Page 137

I turned a little and saw some of the tiny golden coins, such as adorned the dancers’ costumes, spilled into the hand of the leader.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 276

“What is here?” Callias asked the slave.
“Some coin,” she said, “tiny golden tarsks, almost like beads, which are light and consume little space, but mostly pearls, and jewels.”
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 544

“I take it you have a sudden craving for paga,” said Callias.
“A sudden craving, yes, dear friend,” I said, lifting my clenched fist, holding the tiny, beadlike coin, a golden tarsk, “but scarcely for paga.”
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 553

“Of what value is this?” I said, looking down at the tiny golden tarsk in my hand.
“Something like a hundred silver tarsks,” said Callias.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 557

The peasant drew a thread of copper coins from his wallet, removed from it a single, tiny coin, and held it up.
Rebels of Gor Book 33 Page 454
[23] coined money, marking bars of iron or gold, usually small rectangular solids,
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Pages 76

Ellen heard the tiny sounds of small coins.
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 455

I looked at the small, round, golden disk. The staters of Brundisium are prized on the Streets of Coins in a hundred cities. They constitute one of Ar’s most coveted coinages.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 44

“Here,” said Axel, who drew from his wallet a small coin, a yellow coin, a gold tarsk, perhaps from Besnit or Harfax, where such coins are popular, and tossed it to my captor, who caught it.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 522
[24] She sifted golden tarn disks through her fingers.
Beasts of Gor Book 12 Page 143
[25] One of the guardsmen opened her mouth, not gently, and retrieved the coin, a rather large one, a tarsk bit. Ten such coins make a copper tarsk. A hundred copper tarsks make a silver tarsk.
Explorers of Gor Book 13 Page 54

He was now holding up, over his head, a large coin.
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 492

I removed a Brundisium tarsk-bit, which is a large coin, the size perhaps intended to compensate for the slightness of its value.
“Open your mouth,” I said.
“I am not permitted to touch money,” she said.
I placed the coin in her mouth. “Do not drop it,” I said.
The coin was far too large to swallow, and, held in her mouth, she could not speak.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 50

I drew a silver tarsk from the ruffian’s wallet, and tossed it to the proprietor, who caught if neatly, in his left hand.
“I am staying the night,” I said to the proprietor.
“As you wish,” said the proprietor, looking from the large coin in his hand to the blade at my hip.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 73

“Do you know what this is?” he asked.
He had drawn a yellow disk from his wallet, which was as large as his palm.
“It is like a coin,” I said, “but it is too large.”
He held it toward me.
“May I touch it?” I asked, warily.
“Take it” he said.
“It is heavy,” I said.
“It is a coin,” he said. “It is gold, a double tarn, from the mint of the state of Ar.”
He held out his hand, and I hastily, with relief, returned the coin. “It must be valuable,” I said.
“Yes,” he said. “Many laborers might not earn its equivalent in years. There are merchants who have never had their hands on such a coin. Certainly it is the first I have seen.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Pages 543 – 544
[26] Few Gorean garments are deformed by pockets. An exception is the working aprons of artisans.
Tarnsman of Gor Book 1 Page 165

Gorean garments, generally, incidentally, except for the garments of craftsmen, do not have pockets.
Guardsman of Gor Book 16 Page 250

Gorean garments generally lack pockets.
Mercenaries of Gor Book 21 Page 442

Most Gorean garments, a notable exception being those of artisans, lack pockets.
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 29

Most Gorean garments, other than those of artisans, do not contain pockets.
Witness of Gor Book 26 Page 429

The girl commonly carries the coin, or coins, in her mouth, for slave tunics, like most Gorean garments, have no pockets.
Hunters of Gor Book 8 Page 65
[27] Slaves are not permitted wallets, or pouches, as free persons.
Hunters of Gor Book 8 Page 65
[28] Many Goreans, particularly those of low caste, on errands and such, carry a coin or coins in their mouths.
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 29

She spit the coins she carried in her mouth into her hand, and told me what I wanted to know.
Tarnsman of Gor Book 1 Page 165

Some slaves are not allowed to touch money. Many, on the other hand, on errands, carry coins in their mouth. This, however, is not unusual on Gor, even for free folks.
Mercenaries of Gor Book 21 Page 442
[29] A coin sack was tied about her neck. Some slaves are not allowed to touch money. Many, on the other hand, on errands, carry coins in their mouth. This, however, is not unusual on Gor, even for free folks. Gorean garments generally lack pockets.
Mercenaries of Gor Book 21 Page 442

Often she would send me shopping, my hands braceleted behind my back, a leather capsule, a cylinder, tied about my neck, containing her order and coins. The merchant would then fill her order, tie the merchandise about my neck, put the change in the leather capsule, close it and, sometimes with a friendly slap, dismissing me, reminding me that I was pretty, regardless of being a woman’s slave, send me back to my mistress.
Slave Girl of Gor Book 11 Page 389

“Move your hand,” I said.
She did so.
“I see now why you were so frightened,” I said. “You have stolen a sack of coins.”
“No, no!” she said.
“Many masters,” I said, “do not permit a slave to so much as touch money. To be sure, they might let her carry coins in an errand capsule, or an errand sack, tied about her neck, instructions to a vendor perhaps also contained within it, her hands braceleted behind her.”
She looked up, frightened.
“And few masters, indeed, I assure you,” I said, “even if so lenient as to let her venture to a market with a coin or two in her mouth, on a specific errand, would permit her to scamper about with a trove such as that which now seems to be in your keeping.”
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Pages 122 – 123
[30] The girl did not now, of course, carry a purse. Slave girls are not permitted to carry such things. When shopping she carries the coins usually in her mouth or hand. Sometimes she ties them in a scarf about a wrist or ankle. Sometimes her master places them in a bag, which is then tied about her neck. Gorean garments, generally, incidentally, except for the garments of craftsmen, do not have pockets
Guardsman of Gor Book 16 Page 250
[31] If a sale had been made, the steward would take a number of pierced coins, threaded on a string hung about his left shoulder, hand them to the vendor, pick up his article and depart.
Outlaw of Gor Book 2 Page 69

About his neck, in the manner of a steward, he wore a set of pierced coins threaded on a silver wire.
Outlaw of Gor Book 2 Page 191

This fellow, Torus, had been standing nearby for some time. He had the strings of coins looped over his left forearm.
Peisistratus took the coins and handed them, on their strings, to Cabot.
Kur of Gor Book 28 Page 293

Many of these coins, not all, were perforated in the center. One threads one or more such coins on a string, the string fastened about the bottom and top coin, or loops a string through several coins, and ties the loop shut above the top coin. In this way the coins are kept together, perhaps tied about one’s waist, under the clothing, or put about one’s neck, under the clothing, or simply dropped into a pouch, usually of silk.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 404

Haruki removed a string from about his neck, and drew it forth, from beneath his long, gray shirt. On this string were seven or eight copper disks, each penetrated by a small, square opening, through which the string was threaded.
Rebels of Gor Book 33 Page 316

The peasant drew a thread of copper coins from his wallet, removed from it a single, tiny coin, and held it up.
Rebels of Gor Book 33 Page 454
[32] Then to my surprise he pressed a small, heavy leather sack of coins into my hand.
Outlaw of Gor Book 2 Page 74

I smiled to myself, felt the sack of coins in my tunic, bent down and pushed the door open.
Outlaw of Gor Book 2 Page 76

As I would later learn, the value placed on girls such as we were, a Judy Thornton or an Elicia Nevins, girls of our quality, would commonly be a tiny sack of copper coins, a few more, a few less.
Slave Girl of Gor Book 11 Page 48

In my wallet there was a sack of coins, a plentiful supply of coins, though mostly of small denomination, such as would not be likely to attract attention.
Mercenaries of Gor Book 21 Page 220

“What is that in your hand?” I asked. She had something clutched in her right hand.
She opened her hand, holding it out a little, that I might see what she held. There, in the palm of her right hand, was a small sack, bulging, seemingly weighty for its size, from the look of it, a sack of coins. It was leather. It had strings.
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 122

[33] “These are my coins,” said the conspirator. “My name is stitched into the leather of the sack.”
Outlaw of Gor Book 2 Page 80
[34] Hup wildly thrust a small, stubby, knobby hand into his pouch and hurled a coin, a copper tarn disk, to Kuurus, who caught it and placed it in one of the pockets of his belt.
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 13

Dumbfounded I reached in my pouch and handed her a coin, a silver Tarsk.
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 76

I took out some coins from my pouch and handed them to Kamchak who slipped them in a fold of his sash.
Nomads of Gor Book 4 Page 150

With my right hand I reached into the pouch at my belt and drew out the coins.
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Page 13

I wondered if the wily fellow had chuckled well to himself when placing the tarsk bit in his fur pouch.
Beasts of Gor Book 12 Page 99
[35] Coins, and personal items, and such, are usually, by free persons, carried in pouches, which are usually concealed within the robes of a free woman, or slung about the waist, or shoulder, of a free man.
Guardsman of Gor Book 16 Page 250
[36] He slipped the gold, on the strung pouch, the string about his neck, back in his tunic.
Vagabonds of Gor Book 24 Page 467
[37] I opened the fellow’s pouch. It contained coins, but there were no letters within it.
I poured the coins back into the pouch, and pulled shut its drawstrings.
Mercenaries of Gor Book 21 Page 243
[38] Without speaking the man took twenty pieces of gold, tarn disks of Ar, of double weight, and gave them to Kuurus, who placed them in the pockets of his belt. The Assassins, unlike most castes, do not carry pouches.
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 4
[39] Not five paces behind them I saw a ragged cutpurse cut the wallet of a merchant, dropping its contents into his hand and, bowing and whining, twist away in the crowd. The merchant huffed away. The fellow had done it neatly. I recalled a girl named Tina, once of Lydius, now of Port Kar. She, too, had been an excellent thief. My own coins I kept in belt pockets, within my robes, save for a small wallet at my side.
Tribesmen of Gor Book 10 Page 51
[40] “Very well,” said the captain, gesturing to a scribe near him, with a wallet of coins slung over his shoulder, to pay the slave master.
Raiders of Gor Book 6 Page 182

The crowd, too, or, at least, many of its members, put coins, usually single coins, or coins of smaller denomination, in the bowls. These were fetched from purses, from wallets and pouches.
Witness of Gor Book 26 Page 429

Portus took the coin and put it in the guardsman’s wallet at his belt.
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 521
[41] “I will pay it,” she said, giving him the coin from a small, beaded purse she held in her hand.
Fighting Slave of Gor Book 14 Page 218

I was given a small purse of coins, one sufficient for my projected expenses, and instructed to report back to my headquarters, alone and on foot.”
Players of Gor Book 20 Page 193

He put the tarsk bit from his hand into his purse, as I held it, and then took the purse gingerly from me, and, sensing he was permitted, dropped it, on its strings, so that again it hung from his belt, on his left. If one is right-handed, one normally lifts the purse with the left hand and reaches into it with the right. The weight of the purse, on its drawstrings, closed it.
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 32

Many were the bulging wallets, and sleeve purses.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 503
[42] I had had Thurnock give me some coins, which I had placed in my tunic.
Hunters of Gor Book 8 Page 55

I bent, angrily, to my pouch. I would find some money which I would insert in the lining of my tunic, a common thing among manual laborers on Gor.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 124

I removed a ten-tarsk piece from the lining of my tunic.
Workers do not commonly carry pouches at their work.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 126
[43] I wore a double belt of threaded, jangling coins, one strand high, one low, as with the corded belt of metal pieces I had worn in my virgin dance, weeks ago. I also wore a triple necklace of coins, together with necklaces of slave beads, of both glass and wood.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 223

I turned a little and saw some of the tiny golden coins, such as adorned the dancers’ costumes, spilled into the hand of the leader.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 276

she wondered, if she were to so dance before him, barefoot, in a bit of swirling silk, in necklaces and coins,
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 151

“It would be nice,” he said, “had you a scarlet halter, earrings, bangles and bracelets, necklaces, a belt of coins, a scarlet skirt, one of Turian drape, such things, but you do not, and so you must do without, and do the best you can.”
Kur of Gor Book 28 Page 675
[44] I speak of lean, scarred Ha-Keel, who wore about his neck, on a golden chain, a worn tarn disk, set with diamonds, of the city of Ar. He had cut a throat for that coin, to buy silks and perfumes for a woman, but one who fled with another man; Ha-Keel had hunted them, slain in combat the man and sold the woman into slavery.
Raiders of Gor Book 6 Page 273
[45] Cabot saw necklaces of strung coins being exchanged in the tiers.
Kur of Gor Book 28 Page 233
[46] Three or four abreast, in long lines, led by their civil chief, Watonka, One-Who-Is-Rich, and subchiefs and high warriors, the Isanna entered the camp of the Isbu. They carried feathered lances, and war shields and medicine shields, in decorated cases. They carried bow cases and quivers. They were resplendent in finery and paint. Feathers, each one significant and meaningful, in the codes of the Kaiila, recounting their deeds and honors, adorned their hair. Necklaces and rude bracelets glinted in the sun. High-pommeled saddles were polished. Coins and beads hung from the reins.
Blood Brothers of Gor Book 18 Page 25

I supposed the women understood clearly that they, like the silver pendants tied in the manes, like the coins fastened on the reins, like the saddles inlaid with gold, with golden wire wrapped about the pommels, were being displayed as portions of the wealth of the Isanna.
Blood Brothers of Gor Book 18 Page 27

Her hair, red, radiant in the sun, had been braided in the fashion of the red savages. It was tied with golden string. Necklaces of shells and beads, and ornaments and trinkets, and pierced coins, of gold and silver, hung about her neck. On her wrists, visible within the capelike sleeves of the shirtdress, were silver bracelets.
Blood Brothers of Gor Book 18 Page 33

Low on her hips she wore a belt of small denomination, threaded, overlapping golden coins.
. . .
I regarded the coins threaded, overlapping, on her belt and halter. They took the firelight beautifully. They glinted, but were of small worth. One dresses such a woman in cheap coins; she is slave.
Tribesmen of Gor Book 10 Page 8
[47] Many of the ruffians probably could not read. Too, they were the sort of men who would be inclined to distrust financial papers, such as letters of credit, drafts, checks, and such.
Vagabonds of Gor Book 24 Page 467

“What of the moneys, those vast sums wrought from the Kurii, the notes negotiated in Schendi?” I asked.
Explorers of Gor Book 13 Page 434

I would make arrangements; I would obtain weapons, moneys, letters of credit.
Players of Gor Book 20 Page 75

Coins, or letters of credit, might be concealed about a wagon,
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Pages 113 – 114

He called a scribe to him. “Give this merchant in gems,” said he, “my note, stamped for eighty weights of dates.”
Tribesmen of Gor Book 10 Page 109

One also heard of a Street of Coins, of which a similar observation would seem warranted. This, too, seemed to refer more to a particular district, than a particular street, one in which several money houses were to be found. In passing, I will note something of interest, at least to a barbarian. On your world pieces of paper, even with impressive printing on them, are seldom accepted in exchange for actual goods. The Gorean thinks generally in terms of metal, copper, silver, and gold, something obdurate and solid, which can be handled, split, quartered, shaved, and weighed, or else in terms of actual goods. It would be dangerous to try to buy a sleen or slave, or a sul or larma from a Gorean for no more than a piece of paper. On the other hand, notes are exchanged amongst various coin houses, or banking houses, without difficulty. Sometimes the wealth of a city has been transferred from Jad to Ar, or Ar to Jad, in the form of a piece of paper, sewn into the lining of a robe. In such a way wealth can be exchanged, even back and forth, without a tarsk-bit changing hands.
Conspirators of Gor Book 31 Page 99
[48] It is, for example, not unusual for a Gorean coin pouch to contain parts of coins as well as whole coins. Business is often conducted by notes and letters of credit. Paper currency, however, in itself, is unknown.
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120
[49] Gorean coinage tends to vary from community to community.
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120

To be sure, there is little standardization in these matters, for much depends on the actual weights of the coins and the quantities of precious metals, certified by the municipal stamps, contained in the coins.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 155

Although this varies from city to city, . . .
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 274

I was not always as knowledgeable as I might be about the relative values of various coins, of numerous cities, which, of course, depended on such things as compositions and weights, and exchange rates, which might fluctuate considerably.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 411

I think it would not be amiss to hypothesize certain approximate equivalencies here. To be sure, much seems to depend on the city and the particular weights involved.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 469

Although these matters differ considerably from city to city, and silver and gold is often weighed by merchants, common ratios in the vicinity of Brundisium at the time of this writing, given the inflation of the unsettled times,
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 488
[50] Every year at the Sardar Fair there is a motion before the bankers, literally, the coin merchants, to introduce a standardization of coinage among the major cities. To date, however, this has not been accomplished.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 411
[51] The smallest Gorean coin is usually a tarsk bit
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120

Only a tarsk bit.” It was the smallest, least significant Gorean coin, at least in common circulation.
Mercenaries of Gor Book 21 Page 120

The tarsk bit, of course, in most cities, is the smallest denomination coin in common circulation.
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 107

The tarsk bit is the smallest-denomination coin in common circulation in most Gorean cities.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 429

Ellen stiffened as he then gave a tarsk-bit, the hundredth part of a mere copper tarsk, to Portus Canio. Portus took the coin and put it in the guardsman’s wallet at his belt.
“That is doubtless, objectively, what she is worth,” said Portus Canio.
“Alas,” said Selius Arconious, “there is no smaller coin.”
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 521

“For most,” said Desmond, “I would suppose her use fee should be a tarsk-bit. Unfortunately there is no smaller coin. Perhaps one might split a tarsk-bit in two.”
Conspirators of Gor Book 31 Page 402
[52] a tarsk bit, usually valued from a quarter to a tenth of a tarsk
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120

copper tarsks, each one of which can be worth anywhere from ten to four tarsk bits, usually eight.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 274
[53] copper tarsks, each one of which can be worth anywhere from ten to four tarsk bits, usually eight.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 274

Too, sometimes coins are literally chopped into pieces. This is regularly done with copper tarsks, to produce, usually, the eight tarsk bits equivalent in most cities to the copper tarsk.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 411

It seems there are usually eight tarsk bits in a copper tarsk,
. . .
eight tarsk bits to a copper tarsk
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 469

“That is more than forty-eight copper tarsks,” I said.
“More than four times as much,” he said, “as Brundisium counts tarsks.” I knew there were considerable differences in coinages from city to city. Gorean polities are fiercely independent, and many are substantially isolated from the others. That is why money changers commonly rely on scales, at least for gold and silver. For example, in some cities there are eight tarsk-bits to a copper tarsk, and in others, such as Brundisium, a major commercial port, a hundred tarsk-bits to a copper tarsk. These divisions, it seems, might facilitate subtle distinctions in pricing and trading.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Pages 531 – 532
[54] In Brundisium 100 copper tarsks is commonly valued at a silver tarsk.
In Brundisium there are 100 tarsk-bits to the copper tarsk. In many cities, Ar, Besnit, Thentis, Ko-ro-ba, and such, the tarsk-bit is more valuable, there being most often eight or ten to a copper tarsk.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 18
[55] One of the guardsmen opened her mouth, not gently, and retrieved the coin, a rather large one, a tarsk bit. Ten such coins make a copper tarsk.
Explorers of Gor Book 13 Page 54

“Give me then,” said she, “a tarsk bit, the tenth of a copper tarsk.
Fighting Slave of Gor Book 14 Page 300

In Port Kar, and generally in the Vosk Basin, there are ten tarsk bits to a copper tarsk
Players of Gor Book 20 Page 59

“Five copper tarsks each,” said he.
“Thank you, Master!” said Ellen.
“You are all vain she-urts,” he said, turning away.
“Yes, Master!” said Ellen, delightedly.
That would be in most cities something like one hundred tarsk-bits altogether. It would be something like fifty tarsk-bits for each lad.
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 374
[56] copper tarsks, each of which valued, commonly, at some ten to twenty tarsk bits.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 155
[57] common ratios in the vicinity of Brundisium at the time of this writing, given the inflation of the unsettled times, are a hundred tarsk-bits to a copper tarsk,
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 488

It was an even silver tarsk, or an even hundred copper tarsks, of the sort common in Kailiauk, figured in multiples of ten, over the earlier standing bid of six nine.
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 133

In Brundisium 100 copper tarsks is commonly valued at a silver tarsk.
In Brundisium there are 100 tarsk-bits to the copper tarsk. In many cities, Ar, Besnit, Thentis, Ko-ro-ba, and such, the tarsk-bit is more valuable, there being most often eight or ten to a copper tarsk.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 18

“That is more than forty-eight copper tarsks,” I said.
“More than four times as much,” he said, “as Brundisium counts tarsks.” I knew there were considerable differences in coinages from city to city. Gorean polities are fiercely independent, and many are substantially isolated from the others. That is why money changers commonly rely on scales, at least for gold and silver. For example, in some cities there are eight tarsk-bits to a copper tarsk, and in others, such as Brundisium, a major commercial port, a hundred tarsk-bits to a copper tarsk. These divisions, it seems, might facilitate subtle distinctions in pricing and trading.
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Pages 531 – 532
[58] On this approach there would be, literally, 8,000 tarsk bits in a single gold piece. – J.N.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 469
[59] There are one hundred copper tarsks to one silver tarsk in Kailiauk. The ratio is ten to one in certain other cities and towns.
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120
[60] The tarsk is a silver coin, worth forty copper tarn disks.
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 160
[61] I had cost him only fifty copper tarsks, half a silver tarsk.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 280

The highest price, so far, had been brought by the former Lady Persinna, who had gone for three and a half silver tarsks, three silver tarsks and fifty copper tarsks.
Conspirators of Gor Book 31 Page 138

She finally went for forty-eight, forty-eight copper tarsks. I had conjectured that she would bring, as a first sale girl, and a barbarian, a half tarsk, half a silver tarsk. She had fallen short of this by two full copper tarsks,
Smugglers of Gor Book 32 Page 21
[62] A hundred copper tarsks make a silver tarsk.
Explorers of Gor Book 13 Page 54

A silver tarsk is, to most Goreans, a coin of considerable value. In most exchanges it is valued at a hundred copper tarsks,
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 155

There are one hundred copper tarsks to one silver tarsk in Kailiauk.
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120

and one hundred copper tarsks to a silver tarsk.
Players of Gor Book 20 Page 59

it is not unusual for a silver tarsk to be exchangeable for a hundred copper tarsks,
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 274

All told then, at the exchange rate of 100 C.T. per silver tarsk, the women had cost me two silver tarsks, 87 C.T.
Renegades of Gor Book 23 Page 142

There are apparently something like one hundred copper tarsks in a silver tarsk in many cities.
. . .
one hundred copper tarsks to a silver tarsk
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 469

and a hundred copper tarsks to a silver tarsk
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 488
[63] Depending on the nature of the silver tarsk, there will usually be ten to a hundred for a golden tarn disk.
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 488
[64] Ten silver tarsks, usually, is regarded as the equivalent of one gold piece, of one of the high cities.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 155

Similarly, something like ten silver tarsks would apparently be equivalent, depending on weights, etc., to one gold piece, say, a single “tarn.”
. . .
ten silver tarsks to a gold piece, a single tarn.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 469

We then left the back room, and, a bit later, Callias had exchanged one of the tiny beadlike golden tarsks for nine silver tarsks, ninety-nine copper tarsks, and a hundred tarsk-bits, at one of the changing tables maintained in the warehouse by the harbor administration, to facilitate trading.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 547

[65] For the common silver tarsk, the smaller tarsk, the coin pertinent to the bidding in question, the ratio was one hundred such tarsks to the golden tarn disk,
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 488

She scarcely realized that there was now a bid on her of ten silver tarsks. That is too much, she thought, too much! That was a full tenth of a golden tarn disk!
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 489

“Of what value is this?” I said, looking down at the tiny golden tarsk in my hand.
“Something like a hundred silver tarsks,” said Callias.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 557
[66] If your Paula sold for a single coin it would have been a gold tarsk, or a gold tarn, probably a gold tarsk. A gold tarsk is usually valued at ten silver tarsks, and a gold tarn, in today’s market, might well purchase two draft tarns, a racing tarn or a war tarn.
Plunder of Gor Book 34 Page 338
[67] “I was thinking of something more in the neighborhood one hundred pieces of gold,” he said.
“Gold?” I asked.
“Tarn disks of Ar, full weight,” he said.
“Of Ar?”
“Yes.”
Vagabonds of Gor Book 24 Page 435

“But it is a hundred pieces of gold,” I said, “tarn disks of Ar, full weight.”
Vagabonds of Gor Book 24 Page 484

“Five,” said the plainly clad fellow, “five golden tarn disks, each of full weight, each from the Ubar’s mint, at Jad, on Cos.”
Prize of Gor Book 27 Page 493
[68] If your Paula sold for a single coin it would have been a gold tarsk, or a gold tarn, probably a gold tarsk. A gold tarsk is usually valued at ten silver tarsks, and a gold tarn, in today’s market, might well purchase two draft tarns, a racing tarn or a war tarn.
Plunder of Gor Book 34 Page 338
[69] Mintar reached into the pouch at his waist and drew forth a golden tarn disk, of double weight.
Tarnsman of Gor Book 1 Page 174

Without speaking the man took twenty pieces of gold, tarn disks of Ar, of double weight, and gave them to Kuurus, who placed them in the pockets of his belt.
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Page 4

I took from my belt a tarn disk of double weight, and of gold, and gave it to the Player, who took it in his fingers and felt its weight, and then he put it between his teeth and bit it.
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Pages 34 – 35

He lifted, heavily, to the dais on which my chair and table sat a heavy leather sack filled with golden tarn disks of double weight, of Cos and Tyros, of Ar and Port Kar, even of distant Thentis and remote Turia, far to the south.
Raiders of Gor Book 6 Pages 230 – 231

a “double tarn” is twice the weight of a “tarn.”
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 469
[70] “The strange men were generous,” said another. “Each of us received, in copper tarsks, the equivalent of a silver stater of Brundisium.”
Swordsmen of Gor Book 29 Page 132
[71] “Do you think an entire gold piece, say, a stater, or a tarn disk, would be too much in a cause to perpetuate and enhance the arts on an entire world?”
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 288
[72]
“This coin, or medal, or whatever it is, is very puzzling,” had said the gentle, bespectacled man, holding it by the edges with white, cotton gloves, and then placing it down on the soft felt between us. He was an authenticator, to whom I had been referred by a professional numismatist. His task was not to appraise coins but to render an informed opinion on such matters as their type and origin, where this might be obscure, their grading, in cases where a collaborative opinion might be desired, and their genuineness.
“Is it genuine?” I asked.
“Who sold you this piece,” asked the man, “a private party? What did you pay for it?”
“It was given to me,” I said, “by a private party.”
“That is extremely interesting,” said the man.
“Why?” I asked.
“It rules out an obvious hypothesis,” said the man. “Yet such a thing would be foolish.”
“I do not understand,” I said.
“Puzzling,” he mused, looking down at the coin on the felt between us, “puzzling.”
I regarded him.
“This object,” lie said, “has not been struck from machine-engraved dies. Similarly, it is obviously not the result of contemporary minting techniques and technology. It is not the product, for example, of a high-speed, automated coin press.”
“I do not understand,” I said.
“It has been struck by hand,” he said. “Do you see how the design is slightly off center?”
“Yes,” I said.
“That is a feature almost invariably present in ancient coins,” he said. “The planchet is warmed, to soften the metal. It is then placed between the dies and the die cap is then struck, literally, with a hammer, impressing the design of the obverse and reverse simultaneously into the planchet.”
“Then it is an ancient coin?” I asked.
“That seems unlikely,” he said. “Yet the techniques used in striking this coin have not been used, as far as I know, for centuries.”
“What sort of coin is it?” I asked.
“Too,” he said, “note how it is not precision milled. It is not made for stacking, or for storage in rolls.”
I looked at him. It did not seem to me he was being too clear with me. He seemed independently fascinated with the object.
“Such coins were too precious perhaps,” he said. “A roll of them might be almost inconceivable, particularly in the sense of having many such rolls.”
“What sort of coin is it?” I asked.
“You see, however,” he asked, “how the depth of the planchet allows a relief and contrast of the design with the background to an extent impossible in a flat, milled coin?”
“Yes,” I said.
“What a superb latitude that gives the artist,” he said. “It frees him from the limitations of a crude compromise with the counting house, from the contemporary concessions which must be made to economic functionalism. Even then, in so small and common an object, and in so unlikely an object, he can create a work of art.”
“Can you identify the coin?” I asked.
“This, in its depth and beauty, reminds me of ancient coins,” he said. “They are, in my opinion, the most beautiful and interesting of all coins.”
“Is it an ancient coin?” I asked.
“I do not think so,” he said.
“What sort of coin is it, then?” I asked.
“Look here,” be said. “Do you see how this part of the object, at the edge, seems flatter, or straight, different from the rest of the object’s circumference?”
“Yes,” I said. To be sure, one had to took closely to see it.
“This object has been clipped, or shaved,” he said. “A part of the metal has been cut or trimmed away. In this fashion, if that is not noted, or the object is not weighed, it might be accepted for, say, a certain face value, the individual responsible for this meanwhile pocketing the clipped or shaved metal. If this is done over a period of time, with many coins, of course, the individual could accumulate, in metal value, a value equivalent perhaps to one or more of the original objects.”
“Metal value?” I asked.
“In modem coinage,” be said, “we often lose track of such things. Yet, if one thinks about it, at least in the case of many coins, a coin is a way in which a government or ruler certifies that a given amount of precious metal is involved in a transaction. It saves weighing and testing each coin. The coin, in a sense, is an object whose worth or weight, in standardized quantities, is certified upon it, and guaranteed, so to speak, by an issuing authority. Commerce as we know it would be impossible, of course, without such, objects, and notes, and credit and such.”
“Then the object is a coin?” I said.
“I do not know if it is a coin or not,” said the man.
“What else could it be?” I asked.
“It could be many things,” he said. “It might be a token or a medal. It might be an emblem of membership in an organization or a device whereby a given personage might be recognized by another. It might be a piece of art intended to be mounted in jewelry. It might even be a piece in some game.”
“Can you identify it?” I asked.
“No,” he said.
The object was about an inch and a half in diameter and about three eighths of an inch in thickness. It was yellowish, and, to me, surprisingly heavy for its size.
“What about the letter on one side?” I asked.
“It may not be a letter,” be said. “It may be only a design.” It seemed a single, strong, well-defined character. “If it is a letter,” he said, “it is not from an alphabet with which I am familiar.”
“There is an eagle on the other side,” I said, helpfully.
“Is there?” he asked. He turned the coin on the felt, touching it carefully with the cotton gloves.
I looked at the bird more closely.
“It is not an eagle,” be said. “It has a crest.”
“What sort of bird is it?” I asked.
He shrugged. “Perhaps it is a bird from some mythology,” be said, “perhaps a mere artist’s whimsy.”
I looked at the fierce head on the surface of the yellowish object.
It frightened me.
“It does not appear to be a whimsy,” I said.
“No,” be smiled. “It doesn’t, does it?”
“Have you ever seen anything like this before?” I asked.
“No,” He said, “aside, of course, from its obvious resemblance to ancient coins.”
“I see,” I said.
“I was afraid,” he said, “when you brought it in, that you were the victim of an expensive and cruel hoax. I had thought perhaps you had paid a great deal of money for this, before having its authenticity ascertained. On the other hand, it was given to you. You were thus not being defrauded in that manner. As you perhaps know coins can be forged, just as, say, paintings and other works of art can be forged. Fortunately these forgeries are usually detectable, particularly under magnification, for example, from casting marks or filing marks from seam joinings, and so on. To be sure, sometimes it is very difficult to tell if a given coin is genuine or not. It is thus useful for the circumspect collector to deal with established and reputable dealers. Similarly the authentication of a coin can often proceed with more confidence if some evidence is in band pertaining to its history, and its former owners, so to speak. One must always be a bit suspicious of the putatively rare and valuable coin which seems to appear inexplicably, with no certifiable background, on the market, particularly if it lacks the backing of an established house.”
“Do you think this object is genuine?” I asked.
“There are two major reasons for believing it is genuine,” he said, “whatever it might be. First, it shows absolutely no signs of untypical production, such as being cast rather than struck, of being the result of obverse-reverse composition, or of having been altered or tampered with in any way. Secondly, if it were a forgery, what would it be a forgery of? Consider the analogy of counterfeiting. The counterfeiter presumably wishes to deceive people. Its end would not be well served by producing a twenty-five dollar bill, which was purple and of no familiar design. There would be no point in it. It would defeat his own purposes.”
“I understand,” I said.
“Thus,” said the man, “it seems reasonable to assume that this object, whatever it is, is genuine.”
“Do you think it is a coin?” I asked.
“It gives every evidence of being a coin,” he said. “It looks like a coin. Its simplicity and design do not suggest that it is commemorative in nature. It has been produced in a manner in which coins were often produced, at least long ago and in the classical world. It has been clipped or shaved, something that normally occurs only with coins which pass through many hands. It even has bag marks.”
“What are those?” I asked.
“This object, whatever it is,” said the man, “can clearly be graded according to established standards recognized in numismatics. It is not even a borderline case. You would not require an expert for its grading. Any qualified numismatist could grade it. If this were a modern, milled coin, it would be rated Extremely Fine. It shows no particular, obvious signs of wear but its surface is less perfect than would be required to qualify it as being uncirculated or as being in Mint State. If this were an ancient coin, it would also qualify as being externally fine, but here the grading standards are different. Again there are almost no signs of wear and the detail, accordingly, is precise and sharp. It shows good centering and the planchet, on the whole, is almost perfectly formed. Some minor imperfections, such as small nicks, are acceptable in this category for ancient coins.”
“But what are bag marks?” I asked.
“You may not be able to detect them with the naked eye,” he said. “Use this.”
From a drawer in the desk he produced a boxlike, mounted magnifying glass. This he placed over the coin, and snapped on the desk lamp.
“Do you see the tiny nicks?” he asked.
“Yes,” I said, after a moment.
“Those are bag marks,” he said. “They are the result, usually, of the coin, or object, being kept with several others, loose, in, say, a bag or box.”
“There might, then,” I asked, looking up from the magnifying device, “be a large number of other objects like this somewhere?” That I found a very interesting thought.
“Surely,” said the man. “On the other hand, such marks could obviously have other causes, as well.”
“Then all the evidence suggests that this is a coin?” I said.
“The most crucial piece of evidence,” he said, “however, suggests that it cannot be a coin.”
“What is that?” I asked.
“That it fits into no known type or denomination of coin.”
“I see,” I said.
“As far as I know,” he said, “no city, kingdom, nation or civilization on Earth ever produced such a coin.”
“Then it is not a coin,” I said.
“That seems clear,” be said. “No,” he said. “Do not pay me.”
I replaced his fee in my purse.
“The object is fascinating,” he said. “Simply to consider it, in its beauty and mystery, is more than payment enough.”
“Thank you,” I said.
“I am sorry that I could not be more helpful,” he said. “Wait!” he called after me. I had turned to the door. “Do not forget this,” he said, picking up the small, round, heavy object on the felt.
I turned back to face him. I was angry. I had thought that the object might have had some value.
“It is only sonic sort of hoax,” I said, bitterly.
“Perhaps,” he said, smiling, “but, if I were you, I would take it along with me.”
“Why?” I asked.
“It has metal value, or bullion value,” he said.
“Oh?” I asked.
“Yes,” he said. “Do you not understand what it is composed of?”
“No,” I said.
“It is gold,” he said.
Kajira of Gor Book 19 Pages 10 – 16
[73] The odds are usually one to forty, one copper tarn disk against a forty-piece, sometimes against an eight-piece,
Assassin of Gor Book 5 Pages 27 – 28
[74] I removed a ten-tarsk piece from the lining of my tunic.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 126
[75] Too, sometimes coins are literally chopped into pieces. This is regularly done with copper tarsks, to produce, usually, the eight tarsk bits equivalent in most cities to the copper tarsk.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 411

It seems there are usually eight tarsk bits in a copper tarsk, and that these are the result of cutting a circular coin in half, and then the halves in half, and then each of these halves in half.
Magicians of Gor Book 25 Page 469
[76] “I had her for a broken coin,” he said, “half a silver tarn disk of Tharna. I will let you have her for a whole coin.”
Marauders of Gor Book 9 Page 162

It is, for example, not unusual for a Gorean coin pouch to contain parts of coins as well as whole coins.
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120

Sometimes, too, coins are split or shaved.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 155
[77] Further, the debasing of coinage is not unknown. Scales, and rumors, it seems, are often used by coin merchants. One of the central coins on Gor is the golden tarn disk of Ar, against which many cities standardize their own gold piece. Other generally respected coins tend to be the silver tarsk of Tharna, the golden tarn disk of Ko-ro-ba, and the golden tarn of Port Kar, the latter particularly on the western Vosk, in the Tamber Gulf region, and a few hundred pasangs north and south of the Vosk’s delta.
Rouge of Gor Book 15 Page 155

Certain coins, such as the silver tarsk of Tharna and the golden tarn of Ar, tend, to some extent, to standardize what otherwise might be a mercantile chaos. This same standardization, in the region of the Tamber Gulf and south, along the shore of Thassa, tends to be effected by the golden tarn of Port Kar. Coin merchants often have recourse to scales. This is sensible considering such things as the occasional debasings of coinages, usually unannounced by the communities in question, and the frequent practice of splitting and shaving coins.
Savages of Gor Book 17 Page 120

The coin stalls were, in effect, exchanges, as, in a market of the size of that of Cestias, in a city such as Ar, buyers and sellers from diverse cities might mingle and carry diverse currencies. As would be expected, the most common denominations in the market were those of Ar, her tarn disks, and her tarsks, of copper, and silver and gold. But coins of many cities circulated. Occasionally one encountered a disk from far-off Turia. Some prized coins were the silver tarns of Jad and, on the continent, the golden staters of Brundisium. Many of the transactions were conducted by means of scales. One often encounters, for example, clipped or shaved coins. The professional in shaving keeps the roundness of the subject coin as perfect as possible. Sometimes it is hard to tell, by eye, that a coin has been shaved. Clipped coins are easy to identify but then, of course, one must bring forth the scales, and, not unoften, as well, rough silver or gold, unminted, is presented, perhaps melted droplets, or pieces cut from silver or golden vessels and goblets, which items will also require judicious determinations. Negotiations and bargainings, over the scales, often grow heated. The advantage of courses, lies with the stallsman. Complaints may be lodged with either of the two praetors, who, interestingly, though magistrates of Ar, apparently strive to adjudicate matters to the best of their lights. Their efforts not only redound to the honor of Ar, but, too, one supposes, tend to preserve the value and integrity of the market, which, in the long view, is doubtless in the best interest of the city’s commerce.
Conspirators of Gor Book 31 Pages 273 – 274

A shaved coin is one from which a clip or filings of metal have been removed, which clips or filings, melted down in sufficient numbers, may be reformed into new coins, plates, or ingots. Copper, of course, and bronze, is seldom shaved. On the continent silver and gold coins are not unoften shaved. Accordingly, much transaction in various markets and “Streets of Coins,” takes place with scales. Valuable coins, of course, might also be debased, but if the coins are minted, struck by hammers from the molds, that is commonly done by a municipal authority, publicized or not. Much depends on trust, of course. For example is it not surprising, if one stops to consider it, that something of value, say, a fukuro of rice, or a slave, might be exchanged for a tiny piece of metal, of whatever sort? I had heard of one city in which the state had issued small black leather packets sewn shut, which packets were alleged to contain a golden tarsk. It was a capital offense in that state not to accept, and value, such a packet as containing a golden tarsk, and it was a capital offense, as well, to open such a packet, to see if it actually contained such a tarsk. The problematicity involved here is obvious. The packet contains a gold tarsk or not. If it does, the packet is unnecessary. Just use the gold tarsk. And if the packet does not contain a gold tarsk, then one is defrauded. So the packet is either pointless or a lie. The ultimate success or failure of this inventive economic adventure was never determined, as the city was attacked by several neighboring municipalities, was burned to the ground, and had silt cast upon its ashes. Sometimes, of course, such schemes might be more successful, as when a paper currency might be used, which can then be multiplied and produced in any amount deemed useful by an appropriate, armed authority.
Rebels of Gor Book 33 Pages 316 – 317
[78] “We are offering fifteen pieces of silver, fifteen solid, sound, unclipped silver tarsks,” said the leader.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 382
[79] “One tarsk,” said the man.
We looked at one another. There was some uneasy laughter. Then there was again silence.
“Forgive me, Master,” then said the auctioneer. “Master came late to the bidding. We have already on the floor a bid of forty tarsks.”
Procopius turned about, smiling.
“One silver tarsk,” said the man.
Explorers of Gor Book 13 Page 44

“I will get at least four tarsks for you,” said the Lady Tima. I assumed she meant four tarsks of silver.
Fighting Slave of Gor Book 14 Page 163

For that reason he paid fifteen tarsks for me, fifteen silver tarsks.”
Kajira of Gor Book 19 Page 444

“Two silver tarsks,” he said, “and fifty copper tarsks, not tarsk bits, but tarsks, whole tarsks.”
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 151

Too, they had paid five tarsks for me, silver tarsks.
Dancer of Gor Book 22 Page 413

“What did you bring?” I asked.
“A thousand pieces of gold,” she said.
“There will be records,” I said, “and they may be checked.”
“Forty tarsks,” she said.
“Surely not of silver,” I said.
“Of copper,” she said, angrily.
“Then you did not even bring a single silver tarsk,” I said.
“No,” she said, angrily.
Mariners of Gor Book 30 Page 81
[80] “To her gold, no matter how luscious and exciting might prove to be the curves of your perfidious, despicable body, you can never be more than a meaningless tarsk-bit of shaved copper!” Witness of Gor Book 26 Page 523

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