The Currency Calamity by Aaron Chang

Updated: Nov 15, 2020

Iraimbilanja. Lwei. Toea. There are many different words for currency in the diverse depths of Merriam-Webster Unabridged. However, for those preparing for spelling bees, is it really worth your while to study up on them? Well, it depends very much on the currency in question. Scripps, SASB, NSF, and many more big spelling bees do not seem to like using the ‘currency’ words. However, there is a very interesting exception to the rule. While ariary will is not likely to be used in any upcoming bees, words like mariengroschen, thrymsa, and souverain appear to be fair game. Why? You’ve likely already noticed, but the mariengroschen was issued in Germany around the year 1505. As well, the thrymsa was minted in the 7th century, so it is obviously out of circulation now. The souverain was issued until 1832, supplanted by Belgian coinage. Yes, you guessed it, and you probably have already seen this in bees. Current and recent currencies seem to be taboo amongst spelling bee word panelists, and yet words like rijksdaalder seem to be quite popular. Just like Scripps’ preference for lowercase genuses and minerals that omit the chemical composition, ancient currencies are also on the Bee organization checklist of favorites. 

I am sorry this blog post was shorter than usual, but I will have another, bigger blog post coming next week. As always, happy studying! ;)

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