Why and when was money invented? If you want to know more about it, this article is for you!
The thing is that money as such existed even before the invention of coins, and, apparently, we don’t know who the first to make it was. The reasons why money was invented are also quite understandable.
It is likely that something like money existed in human societies at all times. For example, the school of money was known even in these ancient states like Sparta, Rome, Carthage.
Why was money ever invented? Fur money was used to pay for purchases in ancient Scandinavia. They also paid the penalties.
The laws of that time said that offender must give a fox pelt for verbal abuse and a sable for physical injury.
Fur played the important role of money in the Middle Ages in Europe, and especially in ancient Russia during the Mongol time. The fur was even used in England, along with the silver penny.
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Thus, the city of Chester paid an annual fur fee during the reign of Edward the Confessor (mid XI century). North American Indians used beaver skins as money. What happened later was that with the arrival of white people all the beavers were already instinct and they had to get the new animals from Europe.
South American Indians chose raccoon skins as money, and Indians chose elk hides.
The leather money made of deerskin was printed in China during the reign of the Han Dynasty (206 BC). And to make the counterfeit impossible they used the rare white deer hides. According to the imperial order white deer were caught and placed in strictly protected enclosures.
No one would dare to hunt the white deer. In different countries, all sorts of goods were used as money. Even people played the role of money. Not long ago, the slave was the monetary unit in Central Africa. It was equivalent of 30 pieces of paper or six bulls. The female slave cost less.
Currency had a lot of exotic forms, until finally, the civilized world made it metal.
Metal was an extremely convenient currency: it can be divided into the required number of parts stored for any length of time.
And most importantly, you could make a lot of useful things that are easily bought or exchanged for the right product out of it.
No wonder that the first metal money didn’t resemble the usual coin in its shape. They were in the form of the conventional weapons or tools.
Even when people started to make metal money on purpose, there was still a long time before they forgot the habit to shape the coins like that.
As for the material, they tried almost all more or less available metals and their alloys. But the preference once and for all, without a vote and a referendum was given to gold. There was hardly a single person, who could resist the glitter of the yellow metal.
Roman philosopher Lucius said that gold would be the best material and that no one would mind it.
The appearance of the weight measures pushed people to the next step. They started making weight units - coins. The first coins were simply small metal ingots with a specific shape and weight. Fraudsters took advantage of it a lot.
Cutting a piece of gold or silver and fusing them into a new bar was not too difficult. It was almost impossible to notice such damage.
Money began to shape up to complicate make those tricks impossible. So this way the coins appeared. They were handy, compact, with a fixed weight and size.
The quality of the metal was good and later there appeared some kind of drawings on the coins.
The first coins appeared in ancient China in VIII- VII centuries BC. Those were the bronze circles with a hole for stringing a rope. In the VI century BC precious metals displaced bronze.
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