[Olsztyn] 15 August 1517
Copies: Biblioteka Zakładu Narodowego im. Ossolińskich, Wrocław, rkps 199, pp. 264-269; Archiwum Główne Akt Dawnych, Warszawa, Libri legationum, vol. 5, fol. 170v-173v; Ermlandhaus, Münster, Nachlass von Hans Schmauch (photocopy of Felix Reich's copy lost in 1945)
Copernicus wrote three versions of his treatise on the reform of Prussian coinage in the years 1517-26 which have survived in the form of copies and translations. As has been proved in the course of a thorough analysis of their contents, they are subsequent versions of the same work. The text of the first draft, usually referred to as Meditata, was written in Latin in 1517. This document was produced with Bishop Fabianus Lusianus and members of the cathedral chapter of Warmia in mind and was to support their arguments in debates on monetary reform held during assemblies of the Estates of Royal Prussia (Stany Prus Królewskich). The treatise consisted of two parts. In the first Copernicus discusses general issues related to the theory of money and formulates inter alia a law of bad money driving out good. In the second he focused on the current monetary situation in Royal Prussia and in particular on the decline in the value of Prussian coinage, enumerating its types and explaining the reasons for the decrease in value of individual coins.
Meditata is the earliest entirely empirical discussion of the monetary question, absolutely devoid of theological arguments and biblical quotations.