All through human history, a lot of things have been used as money. From cloths to precious gems and salt and even pepper, different races of men have adopted different things as their money.
Yes, Money has not always being that decorated piece of paper with a portrait of a man (usually deceased) on it, money have been anything a group of society have decided to give value. Economically, money is anything that is generally acceptable as a means of exchange, a store of value and a medium of settling of debts.
With the invention of the internet, money has gone through a drastic change. Transactions can now be done from the comfort of your home sitting in your favorite couch.
Major currencies have being turned to software and new ones have been created. Such is the birth of cryptocurrencies which is becoming a force to be reckoned with.
This article will be focusing on money through the scope of history, all from the reign of bullion down to the use of cryptos. Is cryptocurrencies the new dollar? Would it eventually eradicate the problem of currency exchange?
Lets find out how software became money!
Money, What is It?
Yes sure, everyone knows what money is, a piece of legalized paper use for purchase. Is that right? Well yeah, you are right, but not totally. Like I said money is anything that has been given value as a means of purchasing things as well as payment for services or debts. Money makes the world go round. So if a country decides to use mere stones as a means of their exchange, then it becomes their money!
Don’t be shocked a lot of weirder things have been used as money through the ages. Below is a list of money and the part of the world which utilized it
When I say stones, I meant really large stones! Why some are so big they cant be carried by one person! These stones have holes in them and the bigger the stones the more they are worth. Stone money were used in Yap Islands (Now The Federation States Of Micronesia).
Kina Pearlshells were used as money in Paupa new Guinea, Oceania.
Come to the coast of West Africa, then the cowrie was once a legal tender. Cowries were also used in South Asia.
- Bronze Knife Or Spade
In ancient China, a plate of soup or the bride prize of your sweet heart can be paid by a bronze Knife or spade.
- Silk And Cloth
In the land of the early morning sun, Japan, Silk can be used to make purchases. Cloth was also accepted in certain parts of the Middle East.
- Salt And Chalk
Salt bars can buy you things in Africa while chalk was equally valuable.
- Bullion And Copper Ingot
Bullion is unrefined silver or gold stones that were used as money in Europe. Copper ingots were common in Africa.
Even trying to imagine pepper as money is absurd, but believe it, pepper was once used as money in old Africa.
Yeah, you better believe this. A full cattle was once used as money
Paper Money? Yes Please
Paper money has been around for about four hundred years but it was invented earlier than that. It’s the Chinese who claim to invent paper money. As far as the 13th century they have been using a system that seems so close to our modern paper money system.
Due to the stress of carrying gold or silver coins around and the danger of robbery, merchants can simply drop their gold with a “banker” who gives them a signed note that can used to purchase goods in the market.
Every transaction done against this note is removed and the buyer gives the seller another note with which they can use to claim their own money. If there is a remainder in the merchants money, he can go ahead to reclaim it in gold and go his way. The sweet thing is it doesn’t have to be from the first “banker”.
Paper money initially struggled to gain ground in Europe as people can’t bring themselves to give monetary value to ordinary paper. Earlier pioneers got ridiculed and some needed exile to save face. Thank Goodness, today all nations across the world use a form of paper money. Paper money ruled Supreme since it fulfilled all the characteristics of money. Money must be generally accepted, durable, recognizable, scares and portable. Silver is durable and silk is recognizable but there is nothing portable in a cow.
The internet have made transactions easier and there has been a need to covert currencies into softwares. But the problem of exchange has been a major challenge. There are many currencies in the world and they need to be converted to the US dollar before major transactions can be performed. (Since US dollar is regarded as the World’s currency. This is not really true but the US has the best economy and many transactions go through them).
Creating Cryptocurrencies introduced a new way of doing business. Cryptocurrencies are currencies that make the digital world go round. They come in different types, the first and the most important of them is the Bitcoin. They are called cryptocurrencies because of the mathematics used to generate them.
It all started like a child play, but as I write one Bitcoin is around the $9000 in value. Wow. Many entrepreneurs believe Bitcoin and other cryptos are the next big thing in the history of money and should be invested in. If Facebook is planning to launch his own cryptocurrency, there must be real promise in it.
Other cryptocurrencies include, Bitcoin cash, Etherium, Moreno, Dash coin, Zcash, lite coin.