By Aeswyn OR

While looking through old copies of ORB following a thread on the Forum originally posted by Hengest in 2007 – looking for anyone who had a copy of an index he had made of ORB issues – I got sidetracked from my intent by reading them. While doing so I found a letter in issue 94 dated 23rd March 1990/2240. I thought it still relevant today and quite amusing as nothing has changed in the world of finance. The piece is introduced as follows-

The following letter is re-printed without comment from the pages of the Daily Telegraph, March 5, 1990 and reads as follows.

Saxon Solution

SIR – It was appropriate for Jeffery English to recall (letter Feb. 22) that the builder of Warwick Castle was executed for over-spending by 14s. 7d. on the contract.

Henry 1 had an equally effective remedy for inflation when “the man who had a pound could not get a pennyworth at market”. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle for the year 1125 records that all moneyers who were in England were ordered to come to Winchester at Christmas. There, “they were taken one by one and each deprived of the right hand and castrated. All this was done by twelfth night and it was done very justly because they had ruined all the country with their great false dealings, which they all paid for”.

One wonders which of our Bank of England, Treasury and City Financiers should expect a similar invitation to Chequers this Christmas!

Richard Fletcher-Barrett
Henley on Thames, Oxon.

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