# What is the reason for such a strange exchange rate in the wizard currency in Harry Potter?

There are 17 Sickles in a Galleon, and 29 Knuts in a Sickle. This seems very impractical, as both numbers are primes.

It might be an out-of-universe parody of how old muggle money was divided before it was made decimal, but that old system at least made some sense: the divisions of 12, (or 20) meant that they had a lot of divisors, so you could easily divide it in 2, 3, 4 (or 5) equal parts.

Is there a reason why wizard money is divided in such a way?

• Sounds like typical "JKR math"... – DVK-on-Ahch-To Apr 2 '13 at 14:18
• Those goblins are tricky. – Xantec Apr 2 '13 at 14:20
• @DVK - Hey! For some of us, JKR math is all we have to cling to! There's an article on wizarding money at the HP Lexicon, although I'm not sure it exactly answers this question. Apparently, JKR originally meant for 1 Galleon to equal GBP 5.00, but there were a couple of snafus -- it's in the article I link to. – Slytherincess Apr 2 '13 at 14:56
• @aSlytherin - by Snafus, do you mean JKR had trouble counting to five quid? – DVK-on-Ahch-To Apr 2 '13 at 16:33
• By the way, are these three coins universal in the wizard world, or do they use other money outside of Britain/Commonwealth/English speaking world? – vsz Apr 2 '13 at 18:50