I designed these coins for the fantasy live role play Trenne Byar (Three Villages) which took place in the summer of 1994, close to Ludvika, Dalarna, Sweden. The planning of the event took around two years and was attended by more than a thousand people. The first and largest of the villages was Vidhamn, were taverns offered proper meals and jugs of mead. Across the stunningly beautiful lake, there was the farmers’ village of Arnros, whose population was suspicious of the big towners. And far far into the woods, were you lucky, you could stumble upon the ancient monastery of Svalvid.
Around 18 000 of these coins were in circulation, used by everyone for everything from everyday tasks or shady negotiacions to high adventures. They came in two kinds: tins and coppers. They could also be split in halves and one tin equalled six coppers. The tins had the king’s dove on the front, and the testicle dagger on back – symbol of crafts and sciences and the bourgeoisie. The coppers displayed the three pillars on one side, symbol of the fictitious faith. On the other two crossed ears of wheat rested on a shield – a crest of sorts for the hard working farmers of the land.
I also designed the script encircling the pieces. I was called Dulin and was designed for ease of learning, yet to prevent automatic reading, so to emulate illiteracy for those who wanted. And hundreds of people did attain litteracy and even had sayings tatooed on their bodies.
Thanks to my very litterate readers, it came to my knowledge that the existence of these coins were mentioned in the sci-fi novel Stealing Worlds by Karl Schroeder. And I can only concur with the implicit message – some of us are indeed blessed with having experienced the innocent days before internet. Invitations for the event was sent over mail (not e-mail) and we had one mobile phone shared among 1100 people. Forget selfies, for emergencies only!