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The Economy of Martin World


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100 replies to this topic

#1 NeoFreak

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Posted 13 September 2006 - 01:48 PM

It just seems that so much can be explained about the culture, military and polictics of a region by getting into its economy. I would love to see sections in the World Book describing the trade between nations, their merchant fleets, how the Free Cities and Qarth and Asshai and the such interact through trade. Oh, and the economies of the summer sea with Astapor and their Unsullied would be great. Also the trade interactioin with the southern continent since that is likely the only real interaction that the rest of the world has with it. The mines of the Westerlands, the wine trades and vintages of the Arbor and Dorne, the fur and snow traders fromt eh North ;), etc. It would be a cool way to tie everyone together.

That or I'm just an economics geek.

#2 Ran

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Posted 19 September 2006 - 05:48 PM

I suspect vague references to these things shall be made. But nothing in very great detail, I daresay.

#3 Werthead

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Posted 21 September 2006 - 11:53 AM

Interesting idea though. In the Forgotten Realms 3rd Edition rulebook one of the more novel things they did was have a big map of the continent with pictorial keys showing what regions produce what goods and where those goods are most in demand, showing major trade routes and then describing the hazards of long-range trading (versus the increased profit). However, that would be out of keeping with the World Book, probably something to hold back for another version of the RPG? Nice idea though. I'd be interested to know what Westerosi goods are popular in the Jade Sea (since spices and silks come back with traders, but what goes out?).

#4 Ser Bruce the Hound KG

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Posted 12 September 2007 - 02:02 AM

I would like to see coinage. I mean how many Penny to a stag and how many stag to a dragon

#5 Ran

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Posted 12 September 2007 - 02:04 AM

We've got that info already, thanks to the RPG. :) I provide a breakdown here.

#6 Ser Bruce the Hound KG

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Posted 12 September 2007 - 02:07 AM

thanks :)

#7 Yakman

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 09:31 PM

it's pretty obvious that there's a ton of trade going on internationally. ships going every which way, qarth, the free cities... dothraki mercenaries, summer islanders etc..

without a map, it's hard to tell what's going where, but it is mentioned that qarth is the largest, most important city in the world, probably the most diverse as well.

#8 Horza

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 10:17 PM

it's pretty obvious that there's a ton of trade going on internationally. ships going every which way, qarth, the free cities... dothraki mercenaries, summer islanders etc..

without a map, it's hard to tell what's going where, but it is mentioned that qarth is the largest, most important city in the world, probably the most diverse as well.


/me Grows beard, picks up German accent.


The history of all existing Westerosi society is the History of Class Stuggle. Maester against Novice, Lord against Smallfolk, Dragon against Zombie Gregor Clegane, all stand in constant opposition to each other, season from season...

Edited by Horza the Ruthless, 12 December 2007 - 10:17 PM.


#9 Ser Luke

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 10:20 PM

Personally, I think of a golden dragon being about 50,000 dollars USD.

#10 Aemon Stark

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 11:11 PM

I'm having visions of tables of economic data now...

"The Seven Kingdoms recorded a 3.5% annualized growth rate in the latest quarter, an increase largely attributable to reconstruction efforts following the conclusion of the major battles of the War of the Five Kings. However, concerns have been raised that the Crown is now in default against its debt to the Iron Bank. Officials in Braavos could not be reached for comment."

#11 Ran

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Posted 13 December 2007 - 03:51 AM

I'll note that Qarth's claims regarding its importance and greatness are implicitly suggested to be exaggerations. That said, Qarth does hold a very important position, thanks to its ability to exert some measure of control over the straits that separate the Summer Sea from the Jade Sea. Pretty much all east-west maritime trade passes through Qarth.

#12 Jaak

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 04:51 PM

I'm having visions of tables of economic data now...

"The Seven Kingdoms recorded a 3.5% annualized growth rate in the latest quarter, an increase largely attributable to reconstruction efforts following the conclusion of the major battles of the War of the Five Kings. However, concerns have been raised that the Crown is now in default against its debt to the Iron Bank. Officials in Braavos could not be reached for comment."


What is the breakdown of the Crown debt? Petyr Baelish gave it to Eddard - 3 million dragons to Tywin, now inherited by Cersei, 3 million to other creditors... but there was a war since. The Faith has 900 000 dragons... so we could have a look at Petyr´s account books?

#13 Werthead

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 05:00 PM

I'll note that Qarth's claims regarding its importance and greatness are implicitly suggested to be exaggerations. That said, Qarth does hold a very important position, thanks to its ability to exert some measure of control over the straits that separate the Summer Sea from the Jade Sea. Pretty much all east-west maritime trade passes through Qarth.


In the somewhat over-simplistic view of the Eastern Continent I have, I equate Qarth with Constantinople as a correspondingly important centre of east-west trade.

#14 Aemon Stark

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 05:11 PM

What is the breakdown of the Crown debt? Petyr Baelish gave it to Eddard - 3 million dragons to Tywin, now inherited by Cersei, 3 million to other creditors... but there was a war since. The Faith has 900 000 dragons... so we could have a look at Petyr´s account books?


I don't have my copy of AFFC with me, but I gather that the debt to the Iron Bank was considerable.

#15 Temo

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 10:06 PM

You'd think the greatest bank in the world would have a credit rating system that would have ceased loans to the crown before it reached such enormous levels. Or I guess the collateral offered by the Lannisters was pretty great, after all...

#16 hobomagic

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Posted 24 December 2007 - 05:07 PM

You'd think the greatest bank in the world would have a credit rating system that would have ceased loans to the crown before it reached such enormous levels. Or I guess the collateral offered by the Lannisters was pretty great, after all...


You obviously are not familiar with the history of medieval banking. People did loan to kings who often defaulted when the war went sour. It was a risky but highly profitable enterprise, given the obscene interest rates that prevailed at the time.

I'll note that Qarth's claims regarding its importance and greatness are implicitly suggested to be exaggerations. That said, Qarth does hold a very important position, thanks to its ability to exert some measure of control over the straits that separate the Summer Sea from the Jade Sea. Pretty much all east-west maritime trade passes through Qarth.


I imagine that Qarth is very much like Byzantium in that its claims were once true, but that they have been losing out to the free cities for some time now

it's pretty obvious that there's a ton of trade going on internationally. ships going every which way, qarth, the free cities... dothraki mercenaries, summer islanders etc..


Remember, it is a medieval world, so trade is a TINY fraction of GDP. 90% of people farm and most of those are barely above the subsistenance level.

#17 a_homeless_harpy

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 12:30 PM

I've always imagined Braavos as Venice, the hub of the trade and one of the wealthiest Itallian cities in the Middle Age. Venice stretches across many small islands in the marshy Venetian Lagoon along the Adriatic Sea in northeast Italy. The saltwater lagoon stretches along the shoreline between the mouths of the Po (south) and the Piave (north) rivers, so it resembles Braavos a lot. What's more, Venice is world-famous for its canals. It is built on an archipelago of 118 islands in a shallow lagoon. The islands on which the city is built are connected by about 400 bridges.

Venice used to be called a queen of the seas. By 1450, more than 3,000 Venetian merchant ships were in operation, and most of these could be converted when necessary into either warships or transports. The government required each merchant ship to carry a specified number of weapons (mostly crossbows and javelins) and armor; merchant passengers were also expected to be armed and to fight when necessary. A reserve of some 25 (later 100) war-galleys was maintained in the Arsenal. Galley slaves did not exist in medieval Venice, the oarsmen coming from the city itself or from its possessions, especially Dalmatia. Those from the city were chosen by lot from each parish, their families being supported by the remainder of the parish while the rowers were away. Debtors generally worked off their obligations rowing the galleys. Rowing skills were encouraged through races and regattas.

There, the trade was roaring for sure.

Edited by a_homeless_harpy, 26 December 2007 - 12:32 PM.


#18 Mulliman

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Posted 03 January 2008 - 03:48 PM

Remember, it is a medieval world, so trade is a TINY fraction of GDP. 90% of people farm and most of those are barely above the subsistenance level.

Compared to the Ancient world, sure medieval trade was underdeveloped. Still, it has to be remembered that the Middle Ages spans about one millennium. The period of 500-1000 AC could give power to your claim, but after that, things begin to gather steam once again, both in the Mediterranean and North West Europe.

Farmers were themselves involved in trading, both in the country-side and in towns. While not spanning as huge distances as during the Roman empire, no village could manufacture all goods themselves and so trade was vital for survival, as it has always been.

#19 drunkenJedi

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 12:33 PM

Personally, I think of a golden dragon being about 50,000 dollars USD.

Huh? So every coin has a weight of almost two kilos (assuming current gold prices) and the Hand's Tournament had a prize pool of 4.5 billion dollars?

#20 Ser Bruce the Hound KG

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 06:30 PM

just for the heck of it I calulated what the hands torney prizes would be worth if a dragon was equal to a English noble note I used the year 1399 as the basic year

an Nobles is 6s/8d therefore 40,000 is 240000s/320000d since one pound equals 20s=240d 13333p/6s/8d in 2006 it would be £5,215,920.40 or given today exchange rate of 1.958 gives us $10,216,157.48 a good amount of money but not beyond all reason using the same data the crown debts are $2,298,635,432.9027 US dollars wich seems a little small