Similarly we may take the farthing as a unit, and invent smaller units, represented either by tokens or by no material objects at all.
The sulphate of quinine and the cinchona febrifuge thus produced are issued for the most part to medical officers in the various provinces, to gaols, and to the authorities of native states; but a large and increasing amount is disposed of in the form of 5-grain packets, costing a farthing each, through the medium of the post-offices.
Place and profit were comparatively indifferent to him; he declares that he never received a farthing for any of his works except Gulliver's Travels, and that only by Pope's management; and he had so little regard for literary fame that he put his name to only one of his writings.
It was an exceedingly LONG LAY that, indeed; and though from the magnitude of the figure it might at first deceive a landsman, yet the slightest consideration will show that though seven hundred and seventy-seven is a pretty large number, yet, when you come to make a TEENTH of it, you will then see, I say, that the seven hundred and seventy-seventh part of a farthing is a good deal less than seven hundred and seventy-seven gold doubloons; and so I thought at the time.
Consider Jedediah Buxton of Derbyshire, England, who in the 1700s was asked to compute the number one would get by doubling a farthing 139 times.
Ten marks, for instance, might be taken as equivalent to a farthing; but 13 marks are not equivalent to anything except one farthing and three out of the ten acts of counting required to arrive at another farthing.
The manorial accounts were kept with precision and detail, and we are told that a skilled official could estimate to the utmost farthing the value of the services due from the villein to his lord.
Meantime the uttermost farthing was wrung from the wretched fellahin, while they were forced to the building of magnificent public works by unpaid labor.
For accurate conversion we write iL for each 2s., and ooiL for each farthing beyond 2s., their number being firstincreased by one twenty-fourth.