28 september 1701
To the Lords Commrs of his Majties Treasury

By the late Edicts of the French King for raising the monies in France the proportion of the value of Gold to that of Silver being altered, I humbly presume to give yr Lordps notice thereof. By the last of those Edicts the Lewis d'or passes for fourteen Livres & the Ecus or French crown for three livres & sixteen sols. At wch rate the Lewis d'or is worth 16s. 7d. sterling, supposing the Ecus worth 4s. 6d. as it is recconed in the court of exchange & as I have found it by some Assays. The proportion therefore between Gold & Silver is now become the same in France as it has been in Holland for some years. For at Amsterdam the Lewis d'or passes for 9 Guilders and nine or ten styvers wch in our money amounts to 16s. 7d. & it has past at this rate for the last five or six years.

At the same rate a Guinea of due weight, & allay is worth 1, 0s. 11 d.

In Spain Gold is recconed (in stating accompts) worth sixteen times its weight of silver of the same allay, at wch rate a Guinea of due weight and allay is worth 1 2s. 1 d. but the Spaniards make their payments in Gold & will not pay in Silver without an abatement. This abatement is not certain, but rises & falls according as Spain is supplied with Gold or Silver from the Indies. Last winter it was about five per cent.

The state of the money in France being unsetled, whether it may afford a sufficient argument for altering the proportion of the values of Gold & Silver monies in England is most humbly submitted to yor Lordps great wisdome.

Isaac Newton

17 july 1702
To the Rt. Honble. Sidney Lord Godolphin Ld. High Treasurer of England

According to yor Lordps direction we have examined the values of several forreign coyns & endeavoured to inform our selves of the values of Gold in proportion to Silver in several nations & considered the ways of preserving the coyn. And by the accompts we have met with, Gold is higher in England than in France by about 9d. or 10d. in the Guinea, then in Holland by 11 d. or 12 pence in the Guinea, then in Germany & Italy by 12d. in the Guinea or above. In Spain & Portugal Gold is higher than in England by about 11 d. in the Guinea, for the great quantity of Silver coming from the West Indies has brought down the price of silver in all Europe in proportion to Gold and principally in Spain where the Bullion first arrives. The low price mends the market and thereby carries Silver from Spain into all Europe & from all Europe to the East Indies & China, the Merchant bidding more for it than it goes for among the natives. In Spain the Merchants advance about six per cent. or above, for silver: At which rate a Guinea is worth about 21 s. 3 3/8d. & sometimes less. In England they advance 3d. or 4d. per ounce, and at the rate of 3d. per ounce advance a Guinea is worth but 20s. 6 1/6d.

Gold is therefore at too high a rate in England by about 10d. or 12d. in the Guinea. And this tending to the decrease of the silver coyn we humbly conceive that one way of preserving this coyn is to lower the price of Gold suppose by taking 6d. 9d. or 12d. from the price of the Guinea so as that Gold may be of the same value in England as in the neighbouring parts of Europe. France has set us an example for in the last year when the Lewidor was raised there to 14 livres the Ecu was raised only to 72 sols. but it is now raised to 76 sols. tho' the Lewidor be raised only to 14 livres as before. So that Gold in respect of Silver is lower in France now then in the last war in the proportion of 76 to 72 that is by above 13d. in the Guinea.
The liberty of melting forreign monies into ingots in private shops & houses for exportation gives opportunity of melting down the money of England for the same purpose, for restraining of wch a law might be usefull against exporting any Ingots of Silver melted down in England except in a publick Office to be appointed or erected for that purpose.

The law by barring the exportation of forreign silver after it is coyned prevents the coynage thereof, because the merchant cannot afterwards export it, & tends to discourage the importation of silver into England because the merchant can make no use of it whilst it stays here in the form of Bullion. The bringing of silver to the market of England & the turning it into money should rather be encouraged as the proper means of encreasing the coin, silver being more apt to stay with us in the useful form of money then in the useless.form of Bullion. If the merchant might export what he coyns, some part of what he coyns would be apt to be laid out here, and this liberty may be allowed him after some such manner as is described in the scheme hereunto annexed.
The licensing the exportation of Bullion whilst the exportation of the money is prohibited makes silver worth more uncoyned than coyned, & thereby not only stops the coynage but causes the melting down of the money in private for exportation. For remedying this mischief it may be perhaps better on the contrary to prohibit the exportation of Bullion & license that of money, & whenever the money is in danger to license the exportation of so much money only as shall from time to time be coined out of foreign Bullion.

The safety & encrease of the coyn depends principally on the ballance of trade. If the ballance of trade be against us the money will be melted down & exported to pay debts abroad & carry on trade in spight of laws to the contrary, & if the ballance of trade be for us such laws are needles & even hurtful to trade. If trade can be so ordered that no branch of it be detrimental to the nation the money will be safe. For which end luxury in foreign commodities should be checkt & the exportation of our own commodities encouraged. If a law were made & well executed against trading with more gold and silver by any Merchant or company of Merchants then in certain proportions to the value of the goods exported, such an addition to the Act of Navigation might put Merchants upon searching out sufficient ways of vending our commodities abroad & as we humbly conceive, be more effectual for preserving the coyn then the absolute prohibition of the exportation thereof.
As for the alteration of the standard we are humbly of opinion that if the value of the several species to be hereafter coyned be diminished without changing the denomination, it will occasion the melting down & recoyning the species already coyned, for the profit that may be made thereby. And if the value be increased the Merchants & people will value their goods by the old money already coyned in wch they are to be paid, & the new money of greater value (if any shall be coyned) will be pickt out for exportation & the Importer who coins it will lose the over value to the discouragement of the coynage, & in payments made by tale to forreigners the nation will also lose the over value.

But if it be purposed to retain the value of the several species or quantity of fine silver therein & only to alter the allay, we humbly are of opinion, that if small money which by continual use weares away fast & is apt to be lost, were coined of coarse allay as is done in several countries abroad, provided it were well coyned to prevent counterfeiting, such money would weare longer and be less apt to be lost than the small money now in use. By small money we understand Groats, Threepences, Twopences & pence, unless the penny by reason of its smallness should be made of copper.

All which is most humbly submitted to yor Lordps great wisdom,
Isaac Newton

16 february 1709
To the Earl of Godolphin, Lord High Treasurer of Great Britain

In obedience to yor Lordp's. verbal Order I humbly lay before your Lordp. the state of the question about the allowance to be made in the Accounts of Mr. Allardes for the late Coynage of Silver moneys at Edinburgh.

By the Indenture of the Mint in the Tower the Master & Worker is allowed sixteen pence half-penny upon the pound weight Troy for the coinage of Silver moneys. The words of the Indenture are by her Majties Warrant of June 20th, 1707; for putting the Act of Union in Execution the Officers of her Majties Mint at Edinburgh were directed to observe the rules of coinage set down in the Indenture with respect to their several Offices. But I do not remember that any alteration in the allowance for coinage or in the salaries was then under consideration.

The words of the Warrant are hereunto annexed.

By an Act of Parliament made in Scotland, A. C. 1690, the Master of that Mint was allowed twenty pounds Scots upon the stone weight Scots for coinage of Silver moneys & this allowance was in use tW the Union.

The words of the Act are hereunto annexed.

Three pounds Scots are worth four shilling sixpence halfpenny English at their just value, but the nation of Scotland valued thirteen shilling Scots at twelve pence English before the Union while the said Act of Parliament was in force, as at thirteen pence English in distributing the Equivalent. The allowance for coinage comes in the first case to almost seventeen pence halfpenny, upon the pound weight Troy, in the second to something more then seventeen pence halfpence, in the third to something more then nineteen pence. There hath been coined 104227 dwt. 10 oz. Troy, & the whole allowance for the coinage thereof comes in the first case to 7533, 13s. 2d., in the second to 765, 18s. 10d., in the third to 8293, 18s. 9d., & by the Indenture of the Mint it comes only to 7165, 12s. 5d. And for paying all Accounts relating to that coinage, there is a deficiency in the funds of about two or three thousand pounds, the question is, what shall be allowed in the account of Mr. Allardes upon the pound weight Troy for the said coinage.

Which is most humbly submitted to your Lordship's great wisdome,
Isaac Newton

24 july 1711
To the Lords High Treasurers of Great Britain

Upon the first of May the House of Commons made this Vote, Resolved that for encouraging the bringing wrought plate into the Mint to be coined there shall be allowed to such persons as shall so bring the same after the rate of five shillings & five pence per ounce for the old standard & five shillings & eight pence per ounce for the new standard for all plate on wch the mark of the Goldsmith's company of London or any other City is set & for uncertain plate not so marked (being reduced to standard) after the rate of five shillings per ounce.

Upon the fifth of May the Commons made these further Votes, Resolved that an humble address be presented to her Majty that she will be pleased to give directions to the Officers of the Mint to receive in all such wrought plate as shall be brought to them & to give Receipts to such persons as shall bring the same for the amount thereof at the several rates & prices agreed by the House to be allowed for such wrought plate as shall be brought to the Mint to be coined; & that the same be immediately coined into shillings & sixpences.

Resolved that all such receipts to be given by the Officers of the Mint for any wrought shall be accepted and taken for the full amount thereof in any payments to be made in any Loanes or contributions upon any funds to be granted in this Session of Parliament.

And upon the said address her Majty gave directions accordingly by a Warrant dated May 10 a copy of wch is here unto annexed.

Upon the 11 12 & 14 of May we took in plate & upon the 14th in the evening an order came from the Treasury to the Mint a Copy of wch is here unto annexed. And upon that Order the following subscription of the Importers of plate was taken for the Future. We whose names are underwritten do declare that we do not expect that the value of the Plate by us this day delivered to the Officers of her Majesties Mint shall be accepted as part of the first payment of the Summ for which there is a bill now depending in the House of Commons.

Upon the 17th of May the House resolved that the bill for regulating Hackney Coaches &c. should be Committed to the Committee to whom the Bill for raising 1,500,000, was committed, and that it should be an instruction to the said Committee to receive a clause, that the Receipt given by the Officers for Plate brought in pursuant to the Resolution of this House of the first instant be accepted as so much money in the contributions towards the said summ not exceeding two millions.
Upon the 12th of June the Bill passed & upon the 19 was published & from that time the Officers & people of the Mint gave notice to the Importers of Plate that the Parliament had made no provision for accepting the Receipts given for Plate since the 14 day of May.

By her Majesties Warrant above mentioned the Master & Worker of her Majties mint is authorised & required to pay the moneys produced from the said Plate into the Receipt of her Majties Exchequer & take Tallies for his discharge. But the Receipts for Plate imported since the 14th of May being not enacted to be accepted & taken in the Exchequer Query Whether her Maty may not authorise & direct the sd Master & Worker by a Warrant, a form of wch is here unto annexed, to pay to the Importers of Plate whose Receipts are dated since the 14 of May after the rate of five shillings per ounce imported, & so let the further account rest till the next Sessions of Parliament.

The plate brought into the mint on or after the 15th day of May 1711 being melted & coyned & notes having been given for the value thereof according to her Matys directions to the officers of the mint, the money wch is the produce of the plate belongs to her Maty & her Maty having directed the same to be payd into the Receit of the exchequer on a presumption that the Parliamt would have made provision that those notes should be taken as money on some of the funds given, wch not being made I am of opinion her Maty may by a privy Seale direct the moneys to be applied towards discharging those notes as proposed.

Isaac Newton

21 august 1711
To the Earl of Oxford & Earl Mortimer Lord High Treasurer of Great Britain

The Spanish piece of money of two Ryalls sent by yr Lops. Order to the Officers of the Mint to be weighed assayed & valued is in weight 3 dwt. 6 grs., in assay 3 dwt. worse then standard, & in value ten pence wanting the third part of a farthing. And twelve such pieces are worth 9s. 11 d.

Isaac Newton

3 march 1712
To the Earl of Oxford and Earl of Mortimer, Lord High Treasurer of Great Britain

According to your Lordship's Order, signified to me by Mr. Secretary Harley, in his Letter of February 26th last, I have considered the Letter of his Grace the Duke of Ormond, Her Majesty's LieutenantGeneral and General Governor of Ireland, sent to your Lordship, together with the Representation sent to his Grace from the Lords of Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council of that Kingdom, mentioning a late Proclamation for making current in that Kingdom some Pieces of Foreign Gold and proposing to make current there, by further Proclamation, several other Pieces of Foreign Gold therein named, to prevent the Counterfeiting thereof: and as to the Value of the Pieces, I humblv represent, that the Spanish Pistoles, one with another, as they are brought hither by the Merchant, weigh 103 Grains each at a Medium, and are in Fineness half a Grain worse than Standard, and after the Rate that a Guinea is valued in England at 1 l. 1s. 6d. are here worth 17s. 1d. and in Ireland, where the Silver Money is raised a Penny in the Shilling, if the Gold be raised in the same Proportion, become worth 18s. 6d.

And in Proportion the Quadruple Pistole weighs 412 Grains, the Double Pistole 206 Grains, and the Quarter Pistole 25 Grains: But in the Representation the Quadruple Pistoles are said to weigh 408 Grains, the Double Pistole 204 Grains, and the Quarter Pistoles 25 and an half Grains, whence I gather, that in the former Proclamation the weight of the Pistole was but 102 Grains, which is a Grain lighter than the just Weight, this Grain, as I conceive, being abated to give a legal Currency to such lighter Pieces as want not above a Grain of their just Weight; and upon this Consideration the Quadruple, Double, and Quarter Pistoles may be put in Weight and Value as is expressed in the Representation; and so may the Double and Quarter Luidores, they being of the same weight, Fineness and Value with the Double and Quarter Pistoles.

The Moydores of Portugal, one with another, as they are brought hither by the Merchant, weigh 165 Grains at a Medium, and a Quarter of a Grain better than Standard, and in England are worth 27s. 8d. Half-penny, and being raised a Penny in the Shilling, become worth 30s. in Ireland: In the Representation their Weight is put 168 Grains, which is certainly too much; and thence it comes to pass, that they are therein valued at 1 l. 10s. 6d. which is 6d. too much. 1 have examined the Weight of 30 Parcels of Moydores, containing a Thousand Moydores in each Parcel, and thereby found, that the Moydore, at a Medium, weighs only 165 Grains; if in Favour of the lighter Pieces the Fraction be abated, their Weight and Value, in a new Proclamation, may be put as follows. The Portugal Piece of Gold, called a Moydore, and weighing 165 Grains, to pass at 1 l. 10s. the Half Moydore weighing 82 Grains and an half, at 15s. and the Quarter Moydore, weighing 41 Grains and a Quarter, at 7s. 6d.

Gold is over-valued in England in Proportion to Silver, by at least 9d. or 10d. in a Guinea, and this Excess of Value tends to increase the Gold Coins, and diminish the Silver Coins of this Kingdom; and the same will happen in Ireland by the like overvaluing of Gold in that Kingdom. But it's convenient that the Coins should bear the same Proportion to one another in both Kingdoms, to prevent all fradulent Practices in those that Trade between them, and that the Proportion be as certained by Proclamation.

All which is most humbly submitted to your Lord ship's great wisdom,
Isaac Newton

7 october 1712
To the Earl of Oxford and Earl Mortimer, Lord High Treasurer of Great Britain

In Obedience to your Lordship's Order of Reference Signified to Us by Mr. Taylour, the 21st August last, upon the annexed Memorial of Mr. Brydges for Directions as to the Rate that French Current money shall be Computed at for the Subsistence of Her Maties Forces in Dunkirk, and Yor. Lordp. Directing Us to Consult Sir Isaac Newton thereon.

We, the Comptrollers of the Accounts of the Army and Master Worker of Her Majesties Mint, Do humbly Report to Yor. Lordship That Twenty shillings Sterling pass at Dunkirk for Seventeen Livres, but are worth (Intrinsick Vallue) Nineteen Livres thirteen sols., which leaves a Loss of two Livres thirteen sols., or two shillings eight pence Sterling, Whereas in Flanders the loss is but about twelve Stivers, or One Shilling two pence Sterling (whereof about half was borne by the Queen), as appears by the Annexed Computation.

We further Observe to your Lordsp. That We cannot yet learne what may be the Loss of buying Bullion of the Merchants, and sending it to Dunkirk to be Coined at the next Mint for paying the Forces.

But We are Credibly Inform'd the Forces at Dunkirk are willing still to Accept of Small Bills by way of Antwerp, as has hitherto been practised, and upon the old Allowance, which seems to be Cheapest for Her Majesty, and may be Continued by the present Signe Manual till further Reason occurs to alter it.
We also offer to Your Lordships Consideration whether provisions may not be Sent from hence in part of their Subsistence.
All which is humbly submitted to Your Lordship.

IN the course of Exchange, nine pounds sterling are recconed at a par with 100 Gilders specie money of Holland, or 1 wth 11 Gilders 2 2/9 Styvers. But 1 sterling lately passed in Holland only for 10 Gilders & 9 or 10 Styvers, or at a medium for 10 Gilders 91 styvers. The defect is 12 13/18 Styvers, wherof Her Majty allowed to the forces in Flanders 5 Styvers, wch is almost one-half of the defect or loss by the exchange. The par between English and French money of the new species is not yet setled by the course of exchange, but by weight & assay I find that an unworn French crown piece of the new species, wch passes at Dunkirk & in France for five livres, is worth 5s. 1d. sterling.

And at this rate 20s. sterling are worth 19livres 13 27/61 sous. But 20s. sterling pass at Dunkirk for only 17 livres. The defect or loss is 2 livres 1327/61 sous, to be divided between her Maty & the forces. And as 12 13/18 styvers [are] to 5 styvers, so are 2 livres 13 27/61 sous to 1 livre 3 sous, her Majts proportional part of the defect: wch added to 17 livres, the current value of 20s. Sterling at Dunkirk, makes her Majts allowance for the pound sterling 18 livres 3 sous, recconing a French crown, new species, at 5 livres. But her Maty may alter the proportion at pleasure, & make the allowance in a rounder number.

When 9 sterling are recconed at a par with 100 Gilders as above, the specie money of Holland is overvalued by about 3 per cent. For the three Gilder piece unworn is worth only 62 pence sterling by the weight & assay. And thence 9 li. sterling are intrinsecally worth about 103 Gilders, & 1 sterling, wch lately passed at about 10 Gilders 9 stivers, is worth 11 Gilders 9 4/9 stivers, and the loss by the exchange is about a Gilder, wherof her Maty bare only 5 Stivers, wch is about a quarter of the whole loss. And according to this proportion her Maty should beare but a quarter of the loss by the exchange at Dunkirk. But the rules of the Exchange where they are setled being generally followed, I presume it might be her Majts intention to beareabout one-half of the loss by the Exchange in Holland, as in the recconing first set down in this paper.

Isaac Newton

23 january 1714
To the Earl of Oxford & Earl Mortimer, Lord High Treasurer of Great Britain

In Obedience to yor Lordps Order of Reference upon the annexed Memorial of Mr. Charles Tunnah & Mr. William Dale for coyning in ten years a thousand Tunns of half pence and farthings of an artificial metal wch touched like ordinary gold, & for cutting a pound weight Avordupois into 32 pence. We humbly represent.
That the selling blancht copper, or making it for sale is forbidden by law upon pain of death, because of its fitness to be used in counterfeiting the silver moneys, & for the same reason it may be of dangerous consequence to encourage the making of an artificial metal which toucheth like gold, & is used in making sword hilts & other wares in imitation of gold. The half pence made of this metal, & melted down with a little fine Gold, may make a composition very dangerous for counterfeiting the Gold moneys.

That in the last coynage of copper moneys an hundred Tunns per annum at the end of six years, occasioned great complaints in Parliament, so as to cause the coinage to be stopped for a year. And after another hundred Tunns were coined, the nation was overstockt for four or five years. And therefore six hundred Tunns may be deemed sufficient for the use of all England, whereof there seem to be about 500 Tunns already current.

That the secret of making this metall being known only to the Petitioners, it has no known intrinsic value or market price; whereas half pence & farthings (like other money) should be made of a metal whose price among Merchants is known, & should be coyned as neare as can be to that price, including the charge of coynage.
And that the people are not nice & curious in taking good copper money, but may be imposed upon by money made of princes metal instead of the metal here proposed, and that the cutting a pound weight into 32 pence may be a great temptation to counterfeit such money.

All which reasons incline us to preferr a coynage of good copper according to the intrinsic value of the metall. But we most humbly submitt our opinion to your Lordships great wisdom,

Isaac Newton

21 september 1717
To the Lords Commrs. of his Mats Treary

In obedience to yor Lordps. Order of Reference of Aug. 12 that I should lay before yor Lordps. a state of the Gold & Silver Coyns of this Kingdom in weight & fineness, & the value of gold in proportion to silver with my observations & opinion, & what method may be best for preventing the melting down of the silver coyn, I humbly represent that a pound weight Troy of Gold, eleven ounces fine & one ounce allay, is cut into 44 Guineas, & a pound weight of silver, 11 ounces, 2 pennyweight fine, & eighteen pennyweight allay is cut into 62 shillings, & according to this rate, a pound weight of fine gold is worth fifteen pounds weight six ounces seventeen pennyweight & five grains of fine silver, recconing a Guinea at 1, 1s. 6d. in silver money. But silver in Bullion exportable is usually worth 2d. or 3d. per ounce more then in coyn. And if at a medium such bullion of Standard allay be valued at 5s. 4d. per ounce, a pound weight of fine Gold will be worth but 14 lbs. wt., 11 oz. 12 dwt. 9 grs. of fine silver in bullion. And at this rate a guinea is worth but so much silver as would make 20s. 8d. When ships are lading for the East Indies, the demand of silver for exportation raises the price to 5s. 6d. or 5s. 8d. per ounce or above. But I consider not those extraordinary cases.

A Spanish Pistole was coyned for 32 Reaus, or four pieces of eight Reaus, usually called pieces of eight, & is of equal allay & the sixteenth part of the weight thereof. And a Doppio Moeda of Portugal was coyned for ten Crusados of Silver, & is of equal allay, & the sixteenth part of the weight thereof. Gold is therefore in Spain & Portugal of sixteen times more value then silver of equal weight & allay, according to the standard of those Kingdoms. At wch rate a Guinea is worth 22s. 1 d. But this high price keeps their gold at home in good plenty, & carries away the Spanish Silver into all Europe, so that at home they make their payments in Gold, & will not pay in Silver without a premium. Upon the coming in of a Plate fleet, the premium ceases or is but small: but as their silver goes away & becomes scarce, the premium increases, & is most commonly about six per cent. Which being abated a Guinea becomes worth about 20s. & 9d. in Spain & Portugal.

In France a pound weight of fine gold is recconed worth fifteen pounds weight of fine silver. In raising or falling their money, their kings' Edicts have sometimes varied a little from this proportion in excess or defect: but the variations have been so little that I do not here consider them. By the Edict of May 1709, a new Pistole was coyned for four new Lewises, & is of equal allay & the fifteenth part of the weight thereof, except the errors of their Mints. And by the same Edict fine Gold is valued at fifteen times its weight of fine silver. And at this rate a Guinea is worth 20s. 8d. I consider not here the confusion made in the monies in France by Frequent Edicts to send them to the Mint, & give the king a Tax out of them. I consider only the value of Gold & Silver in proportion to one another.

The Ducats of Holland & Hungary & the Empire were lately current in Holland among the common people in their markets & ordinary affairs at five Guilders in specie, & five styvers, & commonly changed for so much silver moneys in three Guilders, and guilder pieces as guineas are with us for 21s. 6d., at which rate a guinea is worth 20s. 7d. According to the rates of Gold to Silver in Italy, Germany, Poland, Denmark, & Sweden, a Guinea is worth about 20s. & 7d., 6d., 5d., or 4d. For the proportion varies a little within the several goverments in those countries. In Sweden Gold is lowest in proportion to silver, & this hath made that kingdom, which formerly was content with copper money, abound of late with silver sent thither (I suspect) for naval stores.

In the end of King William's reign, & the first year of the late Queen, when foreign coyns abounded in England, I caused a great many of them to be assayed in the Mint,link & found by the assays that fine Gold was to fine Silver in Spain, Portugal, France, Holland, Italy, Germany, & the northern kingdoms, in the proportions above mentioned, errors of the Mints excepted.

In China and Japan one pound weight of fine gold is worth but nine or ten pounds weight of fine silver, & in East India it may be worth twelve. And this low price of gold in proportion to silver carries away the silver from all Europe.

So then by the course of trade & exchange between nation & nation in all Europe, fine gold is to fine silver as 14 4/5 or 15 to one. And a Guinea at the same rate is worth between 20s. 5d. & 20s. 8d., except in extraordinary cases, as when a Plate Fleet is just arrived in Spain, or ships are lading here for the East Indies, which cases I do not here consider. And it appears by Experience as well as by reason that silver flows from those places where its value is lower in proportion to gold, as from Spain to all Europe, & from all Europe to the East Indies, China & Japan, & that Gold is most plentifull in those places in which its value is highest in proportion to Silver, as in Spain & England.

It is the demand for exportation which hath raised the price of exportable Silver about 2d. or 3d. in the ounce above that of Silver in coyn, and have thereby created a temptation to export or melt down the silver coyn rather then give 2d. or 3d. for forreign silver. And the demand for exportation arises from the higher price of silver in other places then in England in proportion to Gold, that is, from the higher price of gold in England then in other places in proportion to silver; & therefore may be diminished by lowering the value of gold in proportion to Silver. If gold in England or Silver in East India could be brought down so low as to bear the same proportion to one another in both places, there would be here no greater demand for silver then for gold to be exported to India. And if Gold were lowered only so as to have the same proportion to the silver money in England, wch it hath to silver in the rest of Europe, there would be no temptation to export silver rather then gold to any other part of Europe. And to compass this last there seems nothing more requisite then to take of about 10d. or 12d. from the guinea, so that gold may beare the same proportion to the silver money in England, which it ought to do by the course of Trade & Exchange in Europe. But if only 6d. were taken off at present, it would deminish the temptation to export or melt down the silver coyn, & by the effects would shew hereafter better then can appear at present, what further reduction would be most convenient for the Publick.

In the last year of K. William, the Dollars of Scotland, worth about four shillings & six pence half penny, were put away in the north of England for 5s., and at this price began to flow in upon us. I gave notice thereof to the Lords Commrs. of the Treasury, & they ordered the collector of Taxes to forbear taking them, & thereby put a stop to the mischief.

At the same time the Lewidors of France, which were worth but seventeen shillings & three farthings a piece, passed in England at 17s. 6d. I gave notice thereof to the Lds. Commissioners of the Treasury, and his late Maty. put out a Proclamation that they should go but at 17s., & thereupon they came to the Mint, and fourteen hundred thousand pounds were coyned out of them. And if the advantage of five pence farthing in a Lewidor sufficed at that time to bring into England so great a quantity of French money, & the advantage of three farthings in a Lewidor to bring it to the Mint, the advantage of 91d. in a Guinea or above may have been sufficient to bring in the great quantity of gold which hath been coined in these last fifteen years without any forreign silver.

Some years ago the Portugal Moedors were received in the West of England at 28s. a piece. Upon notice from the Mint that they were worth only about 27s. 7d., the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury ordered their Receivers of Taxes to take them at no more than 27s. 6d. Afterwards many gentlemen in the west sent up to the Treasury a Petition that the Receivers might take them again at 28s., and promised to take them again at the same rate [erased], to get returns for this money at that rate, alledging that when they went at 28s. their country was full of gold, which they wanted very much. But the Commissioners of the Treasury, considering that at 28s. the nation would lose five pence a piece, rejected the Petition. And if an advantage to the Merchant of 5d. in 28s. did pour that money in upon us, much more hath an advantage to the merchant of 9d. in a Guinea or above, been able to bring into the Mint great quantities of gold without any forreign silver, & may be able to do it still, till the cause be removed.

If things be let alone till silver money be a little scarcer, the Gold will fall of itself. For people are already backward to give Silver for Gold, and will in a little time refuse to make payments in Silver without a premium, as they do in Spain, & this premium with be an abatement in the value of the gold. And so the question is whether Gold shall be lowered by the government, or let alone till it falls of itself by the want of silver money.

It may be said that there are great quantities of silver in Plate, & if the Plate were coyned there would be no want of Silver money. But I reccon that silver is safer from exportation in the form of plate then in the form of money, because of the greater value of the Silver & fashion together. And therefore I am not for coyning the Plate till the temptation to export the silver money (wch has a profit of 2d. or 3d. an ounce) be diminished. For as often as men are necessitated to send away money for answering debts abroad, there will be a temptation to send away Silver rather then Gold, because of the profit which is almost 4 per cent. And for the same reason forreigners will chuse to send hither their gold rather then their Silver.

All which is most humbly submitted to yor Lordps. great wisdome,
Isaac Newton

12 april 1720
To the Lords Commrs. of His Majties Treasury

In obedience to yor Lordps Order of Reference signified to me by Mr. Tilsons letter of the 5th instant, that I should report the value of Imperial Dollars both intrincecally & by the way of Exchange with Sweden: I humbly represent that the specie Rix dollars are coined of several values by several Princes of the Empire from 4s. 4d. to 4s. 8d. But in books of Exchange the Rix dollar is valued at 48 Schellngs Lubs of Hamburgh, at 48 styvers of Antwerp, at 50 Styvers of Amsterdam, & at 4s. 6d. English. There is also a Common Dollar of the Empire in respect of which the Gulde or Guilders is usually marked 2/3 to signify that is two-thirds of this Dollar. The Gulde is 24 Marien grosch, the Common Dollar 36 Marien Grosh, & the Rix Dolar two Gulden, so that the common Dollar is three quarters of the Rix Dollar. The difficulty is to know whether by the Imperial Dollar be meant the Common Dollar of the Empire or the Rix Dollar.

If any payments have been made to Sweden since the Treaty of 6/16 January 1700, the Precedent is to be followed as the best interpreter of the Treaty. If none; I am told that the Imperial Dollar is sometimes taken for the common Dollar but more usually for the Rix Dollar, & that the word Reichs or Rycks Thalere signifies Imperial Dollar. But I am not skilled in the German language.

In the weekly Tables of Exchange with London, the number set over against Hamburgh signifies the number of Bank Schelling and Deniers to be paid or received at Hamburgh for one pound sterling at London, & 3 5/9 Schellings are at a par with one pound sterling. How the exchange is between London & Stockholm I do not find in the Tables. But by the Treaty the money is to be paid at London to the Order of the Crown of Sweden. He is to receive at London 288,000 Imperial Dollars, & if these be Rix Dollars they amount unto 64,800 pounds sterling.

All which is most humbly submitted to yor Lordps great wisdome,
Isaac Newton

13 april 1724
To the Lords Commrs. of his Maities Treasury

In obedience to yor Lordps. Order signified to me by Mr. Scope in his letter of 10 Apr. instant, concerning the trial of the Pix of copper moneys coyned by Mr. Wood at Bristoll, I humbly represent that the moneys there reserved for a trial are kept lockt up in a box or Pix under the keys of Mr. Wood & the comptroller of that coynage, or of their deputies.

And that in my most humble opinion the trial thereof may be more authentick & satisfactory & something cheaper if the Box before opening be brought up to London & the moneys be tried in his Maj ties Mint in the Tower by his Majties Assaymaster before such person or persons as your Lord or his Majty in Council shall appoint to see the Trial performed & report the Treasury Papers, event to your Lordp., & before the officers of the said Mints & before the parties concerned, viz. Mr. Wood & the Comptroller of that coynage who are both in town, & their Deputies, & one or two Gentlemen of Ireland whom your Lordships may give leave to be present if desired. And at the same time any other parcel or parcels of Copper moneys old or new may be tried there before the persons above mentioned & the weight & Value ascertained & compared with the Value of the copper moneys now coyned at Bristoll & the Trial reported to your Lordps.

But if your Lordps. had rather that the copper Pix be tried at Bristoll I will look out for a man to do it & treat with him and see him instructed & furnished with necessaries with all convenient speed.

All which is most humbly submitted to your Lordship's great wisdome,
Isaac Newton

10 november 1725
To the Lords Commisioners of Her Majesty's Treasury

In obedience to your Lordships order of reference of the 23 of September last, in which your Lordships are pleased to direct us to cause the weight and assay to be taken of 5 sorts of Portugal gold moneys mentioned in your order, and to report the same to you with our opinion at what value they may reasonably go in Ireland in case his Majestie by his proclamation shall think fit to make them current in that kingdom: we have caused 5 pieces of those 5 sorts one of each sort fresh out of the Portugal mint to be weighed and assayed by our assaymaster and valued.

By these assays taken one with another the money is standard and by the weights of the 5 pieces the species increase in weight and value from the least to the greatest in the proportion of two to one, the second being double to the first, the third to the second, the fourth to the third and the fifth to the fourth. Mence the value of the highest species gives the values of the other four.

The biggest piece being standard and weighing 18 dwt. 9 gr., is worth 3, 11 s. 6 d., supposing a guinea to be worth 21 shillings, and this may be reckoned the value of the pieces of the biggest species one with another when they come fresh out of the Portugal mint.

But the merchants will be apt to cull out the lightest species for Ireland and to send the heaviest to the melting pot; and the pieces will quickly grow lighter by wearing in Portugal before they come into Ireland and the smallest pieces will wear fastest in proportion to their weight and value and if they are to be made current by proclamation some abatement of the value must be made for this lightness. Suppose by putting the pieces of the biggest species singly equal in value to 3 guineas and a third part of a guinea, or 3 of them equal in value to 10 guineas, 3 of the next sort to 5 guineas, 3 of the middle sort to 2 guineas and the rest in proportion.

All which is humbly submitted to your Lops. Great wisdom,
Isaac Newton