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DavidZahir
11-28-2010, 01:50 AM
This is about research about the story Carmilla by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu.

How much would an income of 800-900 pounds a year in the 1840s translate into a modern equivalent? No less important, what if we weren't talking about 800-900 British pounds but rather 800-900 Austrian silver Gulden? What would that be like in modern money?

Thanks in advance!

Drachen Jager
11-28-2010, 02:04 AM
When using the CPI/RPI, the (average) value in 2009 of $850 from 1840 is 14800.00. The range of values is from 10900.00 to 22300.00. This answer is better if the subject is a consumer good or something else of interest to an individual.
When using the GDP deflator, the (average) value in 2009 of $850 from 1840 is 17700.00. The range of values is from 9500.00 to 23600.00. This answer is better if the subject is a capital investment or government expenditure


From http://www.measuringworth.com/calculators/exchange/result_exchange.php


Austria is harder because their currency has changed at least twice during the period in question. Figure the inflation will be approximately the same and you won't be far off.

DavidZahir
11-28-2010, 03:35 AM
Thank you very much. In this case I am speaking of personal income from a pension, issued by the Imperial Austrian Government to an ex-patriot Englishman (for services unspecified). Now, when I went to the link you provided and used the calculator there, I got approximately 60,000 pounds in 2009 buying power from 850 pounds from 1840 (just over 68,000 if the year is 1845). This is quite a bit different from the numbers you give, so I am clearly missing something. Could you kindly explain?

I should mention I find your answer to make more sense given the context of the story (namely how this income in the rural area in an underpopulated Austrian province was enough to support the equivalent of a manor house and its staff).

Also (and this probably shows my gross ignorance on the subject) were British Pounds backed by gold in this period? I ask because the Austrian Gulden is listed quite explicitly as a silver coin. This question almost certainly demonstrates my utter cluelessness, doesn't it? Help!

Drachen Jager
11-28-2010, 05:00 AM
Sorry, I was using the wrong calculator on that website. For some reason I ended up with a USD/Pounds conversion in my figures.

san_remo_ave
11-28-2010, 06:16 AM
Also (and this probably shows my gross ignorance on the subject) were British Pounds backed by gold in this period? I ask because the Austrian Gulden is listed quite explicitly as a silver coin. This question almost certainly demonstrates my utter cluelessness, doesn't it? Help!

In 1840? The British pound would have been backed by gold (having moved from silver std to gold std in the 17th century).

These days? I don't think any currency is attached to specie any longer.

PeterL
11-28-2010, 06:28 PM
Thank you very much. In this case I am speaking of personal income from a pension, issued by the Imperial Austrian Government to an ex-patriot Englishman (for services unspecified). Now, when I went to the link you provided and used the calculator there, I got approximately 60,000 pounds in 2009 buying power from 850 pounds from 1840 (just over 68,000 if the year is 1845).


The numbers you got are in the right range. For perspective remember that in the 1800's the typical Englishman made about 100 pounds a year. People who made 200 a year were doing nicely. If someone were rewarded by getting a pension of 850, that shows that there was a real reward.