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Across Coveted Lands by Arnold Henry Savage Landor

The pul one fortieth of a kran


The

1857 to 1878 coins were merely one-kran, half-kran, quarter-kran:--

| One kran. | Half kran. | Quarter kran. ---------------------+-----------+------------+-------------- Legal weight | 76.96 | 38.48 | 19.24 Weight in pure silver| 69.264 | 34.632 | 17.316

The older coinage before 1857, a most irregular coin--of one kran--varied considerably and had an approximate average fineness of 855, an average weight (grains troy) of 75.88, and a weight in pure silver of grains troy 64.877, which is below the correct standard by no less than 6.76 per cent.

In the newest coinage of two-kran pieces, the coin most used in cities,--large payments being always made in two-kran pieces--we have an average fineness of 892.166; average weight, grains troy, 119.771; weight in pure silver, grains troy, 124.69, or 2.55 per cent. below the standard.

In nickel coinage, composed of 25 per cent. of nickel and 75 per cent. of copper, we have:--

Two shai pieces (grains troy) 69.45 One shai pieces (grains troy) 46.30

The copper coins are in great variety. There is the _abassi_ (one-fifth of a kran) worth four shais, and very scarce now.

The _sadnar_ (one-tenth of a kran) equivalent to two shais.

justify;">The (one) _shai_ (one-twentieth of a kran).

The _pul_ (one-fortieth of a kran), half a shai.

And the _jendek_ (one-eightieth of a kran) a quarter shai; this coin only found in circulation in Khorassan.

When it is remembered that at the present rate of exchange the kran can be reckoned at fivepence in English money, and the toman as roughly equivalent to one American dollar, it will be seen that the subdivisions of the kran are rather minute for the average European mind.

[Illustration: The Imperial Bank of Persia Decorated on the Shah's Birthday.]

Yet there are things that one can buy even for a _jendek_; think of it,--the fourth part of a farthing! But that is only in Khorassan.

FOOTNOTES:

[1] I understand this figure has since considerably increased.

CHAPTER XIV

The Banks of Persia--The Imperial Bank of Persia--The most revered foreigner in Persia--Loans--The road concession--The action of the Stock Exchange injurious to British interests--Securities--Brains and not capital--Risks of importing capital--An ideal banking situation--Hoarding--Defective communication--The key to profitable banking in Persia--How the exchange is affected--Coins--Free trade--The Russian Bank and Mr. De Witte--Mr. Grube an able Manager--Healthy competition--Support of the Russian Government.

The Banks of Persia can be divided into three classes. One, containing the smaller native bankers, who often combine the jeweller's business with that of the money changer; the larger and purely native banking businesses, and then the foreign banks, such as the Imperial Bank of Persia (English Bank), the Banque d'Escompte et de Prets (Russian Bank) and the Agency of the Banque Internationale de Commerce de Moscow (Banque Poliakoff). There are other foreign firms too, such as Ziegler and Co., Hotz, the Persian Gulf Trading Co., etc., which transact banking to a limited extent besides their usual and principal trading business; but these are not banks proper.


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