What Is A Symetallic Standard?


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Symetallism is a monetary system by which a fixed quantity of gold is alloyed with a fixed quantity of silver to form a new monetary unit in which any flux in the metals values are offset within the alloy.

It was the English economist Alfred Marshall who first put forward a proposition of using electrum, a alloy of silver and gold, as the standard in 1888 to the Gold and Silver Commission in the United Kingdom. Marshall suggested that what he called a symmetallic system be implemented as a means to effectively defeat the effects of Gresham’s Law. However, the idea was not warmly received and not politically expedient.

The first coins ever minted were struck from naturally occurring electrum by the ancient Lydians of Asia Minor in the time of King Croesus. They were called Electrum Stater’s, the word stater meaning standard.

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