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“ Money never prevented anyone from being happy or unhappy ~ Eddie Barclay ” 142mqs
The next stage of evolution for money was the creation of coins. Coins effectively replaced the ineffective and troublesome barter and commodity money system.
Many archaeologists and historians believe that independent coinage originated in the 17th century among the early people of Lydia, the Aegean Islands or in China.
Since the creation of the coin, coins have been a symbolic and the most universal recognizable embodiment of money.
Coins come in all shapes and forms. Most coins were circular, while some were oval, triangle, square or rectangular in form. Rare and unusual coins with irregular shapes were used throughout history. Some were beaten at the edges to resemble different shapes to indicate a different value. There were even coins from China with a hole cut through the centre so they can be held together on a string.
During the 5th century, the Greeks commissioned classical artists to design the faces and figures on their coins, often using deities in their mythology as near perfect human models. This made the ancient Greek coins with their god, goddesses and mythical heroes among the most beautiful coins in the world, according to avid collectors.
Different metals were used in the creation of coins, from scrap metal to copper, bronze, iron, silver and gold.
Different methods of minting these coins were also used. In ancient days, coins were produced by simply hitting a piece of metal positioned over an anvil. The Chinese sped up the process of coin production by using a coin cast. This allows the minted coins to be consistent in shape and weight. Modern technology now mint coins using electric and hydraulic presses.
Have you ever noticed that the edges of coins have grooves cut into them? This process is called milling or reeding. In the old days, when coins were made of precious or better grade metals; milling or reeding was done on the coin to prevent clipping, the shaving off the edges of precious metal in the coin.
Although coins of the past were made of precious metals, the coins today are mostly made from base metal and do not hold any value except as a currency to exchange for goods and services, its value determined by government law.
More information on coins and its history can be found here:
Due to its weight, carrying a lot of coins around was cumbersome. It was better off to carry a note stating your possession of the numerous coins you own than lugging the coins around everywhere.
The creation of paper money was the natural progression in the history of money
There are 5 main transitions in the evolution of money (click to read more):