10 interesting facts about money
Money varies widely around the world. However, they are united by one fact - they are used to pay for goods and services and reflect their value.
People, familiar to us today, paper notes and metal coins began to be used relatively recently. In its formation, money has come a long way - from cocoa beans and cattle to electronic systems and cryptocurrencies .
In this article we will consider the most amazing facts about money that will help you learn a lot of new and interesting things.
- Amazing facts about money from the past
- The word "money" comes from the word "cattle"
- Cocoa beans as money
- The first paper money
- The heaviest money
- The money of Sparta
- Amazing facts about the money of our time
- The most popular items of money
- The most popular banknotes
- The life of money
- Notches on the coins
- The distribution of money in the world
Amazing facts about money from the past
In the first section we will tell about amazing facts about money from the past, when people started using cattle and goods as value-setting, and until the time when money took the form of notes and coins.
The word “money” came from the word “cattle”
The very word “money” originally came from the word “cattle”. This can be seen in many languages of the world, including the name of currencies. For example, in Latin, “money” sounds like pecunia , which came from pecus (lat. “Cattle”). The same root is also present in the English pecuniary ("monetary").
The name of the Indian currency, rupee, comes from the ancient Sanskrit word rūpa ("cattle"). And in the Old Germanic language, the word capital meant the number of livestock.
Cocoa beans as money
[19459008 ] The Mayan Indians of South America used cocoa beans as money. There are historical documents that confirm that back in the 16th century, the Spaniards, who arrived to colonize the mainland, also used cocoa beans to pay for goods and services. For especially large purchases, for example, in wholesale trade, payment was transferred in bags, each of which contained about 24,000 cocoa beans.
To purchase valuable goods that were not cheap, such as slaves or people for sacrifice, special cotton raincoats were used, the cost of which ranged from 60 to 300 cocoa beans depending on quality.
The first paper money
They were made on reed parchment, which approximately corresponded to the size of a modern A4 sheet in size.
In modern Europe, the first paper notes were invented in Sweden - this happened in 1661. They were called dealers and were invented by the head of the Stockholm Bank, who offered them as credit securities backed by precious metals.
In the USA, the first paper money appeared in 1690, and it was not a dollar - it appeared later. The Massachusetts colony issued bills in denominations ranging from 2 shillings to 10 pounds, which were mainly used to issue salaries to soldiers during the military expansion in Canada. And in Canada, the first paper money was playing cards.
The heaviest money
The most difficult money is considered to be stone. According to historical documents, the first money made of stone appeared around the 6th century A.D., however, it received widespread use in the 11th-15th centuries.
The Pacific island of Yap is best known for its money from limestone. Money here has the form of a disk with a hole in the middle and is called Rai stones or fie. However, there are no disc size standards - the diameter can reach from 3.5 cm to 3.6 m with a weight of 4 tons.
In Europe, the heaviest coin was made in Sweden in the 18th century - its weight was 19 kg. And in Australia, they simply issued a giant coin weighing 1,000 kg and a face value of $ 1 million, while its diameter was 80 cm and its thickness was 12 cm.
Money in Sparta is one of the most amazing facts about money. Initially, in Sparta, as in other parts of ancient Greece, gold and silver were used as money. But with the coming to power of Lycurgus, the monetary system of Sparta changed. All deals began to be concluded in long metal bars.
Why did the Spartans use such an inconvenient form of settlement? The main reason was that Lycurgus carried out a reform that was supposed to defeat theft in the state, bribery, and generally reduce the desire of citizens to accumulate wealth.
Amazing facts about the money of our time
The most popular denominations of money
19459008] Each country has its own currency, however, the names of money in many states coincide. So, the most popular names are only three - the dollar, peso and franc.
The name “dollar” originates from the Czech name “Joachimstaller”, which was minted in the city of Joachimstal. Later, the coin was renamed “thaler,” and it was converted to English as “dollar,” where it later began to denote a completely different currency.
The name "peso", which is used for the money of most Latin American countries, is translated from Latin as "weighted" ( pensum ). It is interesting that the names of many modern currencies took their name from the word "weight" in different languages.
The name "franc" came from the word "France", and it was minted in gold and silver. Depending on the image on the coin, there were two types of francs: “horse franc” and “foot franc”.
The most popular banknotes
The most popular banknotes in the USA are 1 and 20 dollars, Americans also often hold in their hands money in denominations of 5 and 10 dollars. In addition, there is a banknote of 2 US dollars, however it is quite rare, therefore it is mainly found only in collections. Interestingly, in the world the most popular bill is considered $ 100.
However, they are quite rare, especially for foreigners, because US law forbids the export of banknotes of face value above 100 dollars from the country.
The average life of a bill is 4 000 bends - during this time she manages to go through 40 000 - 50 000 people, after which she breaks. This takes about 4-5 years, so central banks re-issue new banknotes from time to time.
Paper money is made from extremely strong paper, which is 75% cotton and 25% linen.
Notches on coins
Notches on the edges of coins originate from the time when money was minted from precious metals.
This idea was proposed by the scientist Isaac Newton, which helped to avoid fraud. Dealers cut pieces of coins and handed them "to the metal." With the introduction of the new standard, such a business became impossible, because the cut edges were immediately evident and the coin became unusable.
The ribbed surface on coins is still called the "edge", and almost all countries nowadays use this method of protection against falsification.
The distribution of money in the world
According to numerous studies, only 10% of the world's people own 82 % of all money, the remaining 90% of the population accounts for only 18% of wealth.
At the same time, there are 46.8 million dollar millionaires (those with a minimum of $ 1 million), and about 2,100 dollar billionaires (who own a minimum of $ 1 billion), according to data from 2018. On average, there is $ 70,800 per person worldwide, while the highest rate in Switzerland is more than $ 564,500.
About a third of the world's population lives on less than $ 2 a day, of which more than a billion people are less than than $ 1 per day.
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