History of Science Museum: Collection Database Search

Narratives

Tallying up

Counting and recording are daily requirements for many people. One way to preserve an agreed total is to use a tally stick [1, 2]. Notches representing the count are cut into a piece of wood and the wood is then split into two pieces. Both a buyer and a seller can keep a permanent record of a transaction. Rather than recording a tally, [3] is used for counting. Addition is performed by turning the brass discs, but since there is no mechanism it is up to the user to carry tens.

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