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the weighed quantity of pure monetized metal that is established as the unit of currency on which the monetary system of a given country is based. Divided into its multiples, the monetary unit converts into a standard of value. Most countries employ the decimal system for such multiples (1 : 10 : 100), but in some countries a quartile system is used (1:2 : 4).
In Russia from 1897 to 1914 the gold ruble contained 0.77423 g of pure gold; a decimal system (1 ruble, 10 kopeks, 1 kopek) was combined with a quartile system (1 ruble, 50 kopeks, 25 kopeks). The gold content of the Soviet ruble since Jan. 1, 1961, has been fixed at 0.987412 g of pure gold.