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RSGII has posted 64 annotations/comments since 30 December 2015.


About Saturday 22 August 1663

RSGII  •  Link

Tomatoes, or certain varieties of tomatoes can be poison to certain people. About 50 years ago I visited a Rockefeller Foundation research station in India. One of their projects was to breed out the attribute of a local tomato that was fatal to a portion of the local population.

About Monday 12 January 1662/63

RSGII  •  Link

Sandwich's 8,000 pounds income would be equivalent to about 1 million pounds today using CPI or GNP deflator. To have the same ratio of income to the average wage, you would need to have an income of about 15 million today. See

About Monday 29 December 1662

RSGII  •  Link

Sam’s wealth of £630. Over the years there have been attempts to convert Sams wealth to modern terms using the CPI or GNP net deflator, most recently on 12/27/1662. While the results are not wrong, they are misleading, because they do not reflect the huge increase in wealth over the last 350 years.
There is a marvelous web site with the tools to correct this:, which describes the seven possible ways of measuring value over time and suggests which might be most appropriate for various purposes, e.g. the CPI o GNP deflator to understand the cost of coal in 1662. Plugging Sams £630 in gives about £80k using the CPI/GNP deflator methods, which is consistent with previous efforts. However this only tells us how much it would take to buy the basket of goods, food, heat, transport, labor that Sam bought. And these items are a much smaller share of our incomes today. If we compare Sam’s pot of gold to the average wage, or the GNP per capita, better measures of his relative wealth, you would need between £1.3 and 3.0 million today to have the same level of relative economic position he had with his £630 in 1662.
And the reason all of those tradesmen and “citizens” were happy to see him—his economic clout, his share of Britain’s 1662 GNP was the equivalent of someone with £20.6m today, a real city man or Silicon Valley type driving his 1662 Tesla!