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Topic Page: Bimetallism Definition: bimetallism from The Penguin English Dictionary the use of two metals, e.g. gold and silver, jointly as a monetary...

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Topic Page: Bimetallism Definition: bimetallism from The Penguin English Dictionary the use of two metals, e.g. gold and silver, jointly as a monetary standard, with both constituting legal tender at a predetermined ratio bimetallist noun bimetallistic /-ʹlistik/ adj [French bimétallisme, from bi- 1 + métal metal 1]. Summary Article: bimetallism from The Columbia Encyclopedia (bīmĕt'Әlĭ z´´Әm), in economic history, monetary system in which two commodities, usually gold and silver, were used as a standard and coined without limit at a ratio fixed by legislation that also designated both of them as legally acceptable for all payments. The term was first used in 1869 by Enrico Cernuschi (1821–96), an Italian-French economist and a vigorous advocate of the system. In a bimetallic system, the ratio is expressed in terms of weight, e.g., 16 oz of silver equal 1 oz of gold, which is described as a ratio of 16 to 1. As the ratio is determined by law, it has no relation to the commercial value of the metals, which fluctuates constantly. Gresham's law, therefore, applies; i.e., the metal that is commercially valued at less than its face value tends to be used as money, and the metal commercially valued at more than its face value tends to be used as metal, valued by weight, and hence is withdrawn from circulation as money. Working against that is the fact that the debtor tends to pay in the commercially cheaper metal, thus creating a market demand likely to bring its commercial value up to its face value. In practice, the instability predicted by Gresham's law overpowered the cushioning effect of debtors' payments, thereby making bimetallism far too unstable a monetary system for most modern nations. Aside from England, which in acts of 1798 and 1816 made gold the standard currency, all countries practiced bimetallism during the late 18th cent. and most of the 19th cent. See J. L. Laughlin, The History of Bimetallism in the United States (1897, repr. 1968). The Columbia Encyclopedia, © Columbia University Press 2017

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APA bimetallism. (2017). In P. Lagasse, & Columbia University, The Columbia encyclopedia (7th ed.). New York, NY: Columbia University Press. Retrieved from https://search.credoreference.com/content/entry/columency/bimetallism/0

Chicago "bimetallism." In The Columbia Encyclopedia, by Paul Lagasse, and Columbia University. 7th ed. Columbia University Press, 2017. https://search.credoreference.com/content/entry/columency/bimetallism/0

Harvard bimetallism. (2017). In P. Lagasse & Columbia University, The Columbia encyclopedia. (7th ed.). [Online]. New York: Columbia University Press. Available from: https://search.credoreference.com/content/entry/columency/bimetallism/0 [Accessed 22 January 2018].

MLA "bimetallism." The Columbia Encyclopedia, Paul Lagasse, and Columbia University, Columbia University Press, 7th edition, 2017. Credo Reference, https://search.credoreference.com/content/entry/columency/bimetallism/0. Accessed 22 Jan 2018.

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