Note that "dozenali" means common, ordinary, cheap
(modern Italian dozzinale
), so "cheap triumph cards" were being imported into Rome by Pierozzo, along with others of slightly higher value - "senza oro". This last note implies that the accountant was familiar with trionfi
cards "with gold/gilded" as well.
The prices for the 1463 mentions:
3 dozen ordinary triumph packs, 1 dozen playing cards: 4 ducats.
4 dozen (48) triumph packs, "without gold" (so presumably the same as "ordinary"), 6 ducats.
16 packs of triumphs, 5 bolognini (1.4 ducats)
48 packs of triumphs, 5.5 ducats.
If 5 bolognini = 1.4 ducats, 1 bolognini = 28 soldi (or whatever the smaller measure is; I am dividing by 10 of course, which they probably did not do).
The first 4 dozen packs are worth 1.5 ducats per dozen, or 12.5 soldi each.
The second 4 dozen packs are worth 1.375 ducats per dozen, or 11.45 soldi each.
The average price is therefore about 12 soldi per pack of these triumph cards.
(Note that this is exactly the price for Marchione Burdochio's pack in 1442 - 12 soldi and 3 denari. Presuming, probably erroneously, that the division into units is the same. At least we can assume it is in the same range of prices.)
The 3 dozen pack of "ordinary" triumph cards must therefore be worth less than the middle two bunches, for the playing cards to be worth anything at all. If the triumphs are, say, only 9 soldi each, that means that three dozen cost 3.24 ducats; this leaves 76 soldi/12 = 6.3 soldi each for the regular playing cards, which sounds about right.
However, I have no idea of the relative values of Ferrarese or Bolognese money in the 1440s and Roman money in the 1460s. I also don't get how he gets his estimations of bol(ognini) and ducats, i.e. how 5 bol.= 1,4 ducats - see below.*UPDATE*
: on page 90, note 335, Esch notes that one bolognini = 16 denari.http://www.rosscaldwell.com/italy/eschp90note335.jpg
(link for larger view)
"A Roma il fiorino di camera e il ducato di camera allora avevano lo stesso valore (entrambi a 72 bolognini romani: per es. reg. 45, f. 75v, anno 1472: «ad rationem 72 pro floreno seu ducato», e questo vale per tutto il periodo trattato.), il bolognino diviso in 16 denari."In Rome the
fiorino di camera and the
ducato di camera thus had the same value (both at 72 Roman bolognini: for example, Reg. 45, f. 75v, anno 1472: "divided as 72 per florin or ducat", and this holds for the entire period concerned), the bolognino divided into 16 denari.
So 5 bol. = 80 denari; each pack of the third reference (16 packs) was therefore worth 5 denari (or bolognini, depending on how this system works)
He also says that "1 floreno (fiorino, florin) or ducat is 72 bolognini" ("ad rationem 72 pro floreno seu ducato
"). The first and third 4 dozen triumph packs are therefore worth:9 denari (or bolognini)
and8.25 denari (or bolognini)
Obviously these would be sold retail for somewhat more.
I guess you could think of a ducat as a 72-dollar/euro/pound note. The bolognino is then a single dollar/euro/pound. The bolognino is divided into quattrini
, (quattrino, a quarter), and each quarter has four denari
, like "nickels" or 6-cent pieces.
These are obviously not real equivalences, just meant to give a concrete sense of how they were divided, and only a very rough approximation of value.
So given my misapphrension of what Esch reports, the most the packs could cost is 9 dollars/euros/pounds each. The least they could cost is about 54 cents/centimes(eurocents)/pence (9x6). The former sounds more plausible, but who knows?