rix-dollar, noun

Also riksdollar, rix doller.
Dutch, Show more Adaptation of Dutch rijksdaalder, rijks imperial + daalder dollar. There is a range of forms between the fully Englished rix-dollar and the original Dutch rijksdaalder (see rijksdaalder), including riks-daler or rix-daler, rixdaaler, and ryksdaalder.
A unit of currency introduced at the Cape by the Dutch East India Company, initially a silver coin and later (from 1781) a paper note; dollar sense a; Rd; rijksdaalder sense a. See also Cape guilder, stiver sense 1.
For the value of the rixdollar against the pound sterling, see quotations 1827 and 1843. Although officially withdrawn in 1841, the unit continued in use long after this date. The rix-dollar was also used in other Dutch colonies such as Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and Batavia (Jakarta, Jawa).
1765 Mrs Kindersley Letters (1777) 65The custom is to pay a rix-dollar daily for each person’s board and lodging, for which they are provided with everything.
1785 G. Forster tr. of A. Sparrman’s Voy. to Cape of G.H. I. 19Board and lodging are paid for here as at the Cape, from one rix-dollar to one and a half a day.
1790 tr. of F. Le Vaillant’s Trav. I. 32A rixdollar is about three shillings and nine pence sterling.
1798 S.H. Wilcocke tr. of J.S. Stavorinus’s Voy. to E. Indies I. 569Accounts are kept here, just as at Batavia, in rixdollars of forty-eight stivers. At public sales, and likewise in retail, the prices are taken at Cape gilders of sixteen stivers each.
1824 W.J. Burchell Trav. II. 540A Cape rix dollar..is equal nominally to four shillings currency.
1827 G. Thompson Trav. 261The colonial paper rix-dollar of the Cape, first issued by the Dutch East India Company in 1781, was declared to be equal to forty-eight full weighed pennies of Holland, (about 4s sterling), and which, under all its fluctuations, had generally been considered to be its nominal value. The value of the rix-dollar gradually sunk in exchange, till in the year 1825 it appears to have reached its lowest point of depression, viz. below 1s. 5d.
1832 Graham’s Town Jrnl 20 July 115By a Proclamation..it is provided, that..the Rixdollar Notes shall be gradually withdrawn from circulation, and be replaced by Promissory Notes, the value of which shall be expressed in pounds sterling.
1836 A.F. Gardiner Journey to Zoolu Country 397For a repast, such as I have described, and even where a tough chop is added, although no charge is formally made, a rix dollar (1s.6d.) is considered as a liberal equivalent.
1843 J.C. Chase Cape of G.H. 188The large majority of the inhabitants, especially in the country districts, still retain in their business calculations the nomenclature of the old paper money, called in some years back. This consists of the rix-dollar whose value has been fixed by the Home Government at one shilling and sixpence each, or thirteen one-third to a pound sterling.
1881 G.F. Austen Diary (1981) 28Persons guilty of the offence of entering the Krygsraad or other offices without doffing their hats..are fined for disrespect, the fines varying from one shilling to — in one case — Thirty-seven pounds, ten shillings or Five hundred rix dollars.
1910 D. Fairbridge That Which Hath Been (1913) 181They will not let you sell your wine retail, no, but they will compel you to sell it to them for twelve rix-dollars a leaguer.
1920 K.M. Jeffreys tr. of Memorandum of Commissary J.A. de Mist 279The Rixdollar is an imaginary coin or so-called money of account, valued at 48 stuivers or ⅔ of a ducaton or driegulden; but at the time of the introduction of the paper currency in the year 1782, it was given a tangible form, since all the paper money was stamped with the denomination of Rixdollar.
1936 Cambridge Hist. of Brit. Empire VIII. 237The rix-dollar..had depreciated rapidly from 4s. to round about 1s. 6d. when, in the financial reorganisation following the resumption of specie payments by the Bank of England, the British Government proposed to make British silver current throughout the Empire.
1957 L.G. Green Beyond City Lights 60He found that after half a century of British rule the country people still spoke of gulden, skellings, rix dollars and stuiwers, though the money they handled consisted of pounds, shillings and pence.
1968 K. McMagh Dinner of Herbs 39The paper rixdollar had been devalued (it had originally been a silver coin worth 4/6 but was now a paper token only 1/6 (15c in value).
1989 Reader’s Digest Illust. Hist. of S. Afr. 45Panic-stricken authorities were offering slaves a rix-dollar a day and food to watch over the sick and the dying.
A unit of currency introduced at the Cape by the Dutch East India Company, initially a silver coin and later (from 1781) a paper note; dollara; Rd; rijksdaaldera.

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