Republic of Zurich, Schilling 1751


Republic of Zurich, Schilling 1751 (obverse) Republic of Zurich, Schilling 1751 (reverse)

The most important coin in every-day-life of the people from Zurich in the 18th century was the schilling. One pound of beef, for example, cost 4 schillings, the same as one liter of city wine. Cereals were cheaper, they cost about half a schilling per kilogram, and would have been paid for with three angster-coins.

Beyond that, the Zurich monetary system was rather complicated. Not only coins from Zurich were in circulation, but also money from France, Spain, and the German Empire. One imperial taler about equaled one Zurich taler. However, the rate also depended on the daily market rate, which was specified in territorial or local coin tariffs, or negotiated directly.

For an average Zurich housewife it was thus easiest to just stay with local money. 1 taler equaled 72 schillings, for which a headman (without food) had to work about three and a half days. For the rest applied: 1 taler = 28 batzens; 1 batzen = 2.5 schillings; 1 schilling = 6 angster, = 1.5 kreuzers, = 0.5 groschen.


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