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Short history of Appearance of coins

Archeologists and numismatists have come to conclusion that coins have been invented independently in three different places on the Euroasian continent between 700-600 years BC Eto Lydia, India and China, as is shown in a map more low. There are the direct proofs confirming Appearance of the first coins in Lydia, and indirect demonstrations testify to Appearance of coins in India and China during this period of time only.

Lydia, India, China


Ionians (the Greek colonists at east coast of Asia Minor) described the east neighbours a Lydians, as people with dark hair and olive colour of a skin. There was a developed trade between Ionichesky cities-states and a Lydian kingdom. Lydian governors and heads of Ionichesky cities-states have been connected by discards. Many historians and archeologists assume that trade expansion has yielded a spark for the invention of coins. Coins have essentially facilitated transferring from bulky system of barter trade to the system based on money. Assume also that coins have occurbed as a gift to gods in religious ceremonies. The Lydian coins found in the Ionichesky temple of Greek goddess Artemis (Romans named its Diana) during archeological excavations in 1951 result in to such assumptions. It is probable that both these hypotheses make sense, but true original causes while are unknown.

In Herodotus jobs (the Greek historian) it is described that the Lydian king Coresus has offered a considerable quantity of coins for a temple in Delphi. Coresus consulted on oracles about success of the intrusion into the Persian kingdom. Oracles have reported that it will be forwarded through the river and will destroy the big kingdom. Under the recommendation Coresus has started intrusion. But, on a twist of fate, the Persian king Mineral tar Great has won battles in 546 BC and has destroyed a Lydian kingdom. The Persian king has seized Lydian mints and a production process of coins. Persians have added copper in gold for wear prevention of soft pure gold. Thus coinage has occurbed in Persia.

During the period about 600-575 years BC, the Greek cities-states have learnt a production process of coins and have started to produce own coins. Silver coins began to occur in Egine (595-456 BC), Athenes (575 BC), Corinth (570 BC). Thus coins have propagated in the western part of the Euroasian continent.

Herodotus mentions in the manuscripts the first Lydian coins 687 years B.C. They were produced of electrum pieces (a natural alloy of silver and gold). The electrum has been found in Lydia's mountain streams. This alloy heat uped to soften, seated on a plate and processed a hammer. The plotting beaten out on one party of preparation also defines them as coins. Certainly, they do not get under the definition of coins acting for today as have no certain weight, the size and cleanliness of metal.

1 Lydian stater (an obverse) 1 Lydian stater (a reverse)

the Coin from an electrum - Lydia's 1 stater of times of king Ardisa (652-15 BC)

Later Lydia's king, an Alyattes (610-561 BC), son Ardisa has positioned the standard of weight for coins (168 grains of wheat).

Achievements in the field of metallurgy have allowed to yield a coin the certain size and drawing on a reverse. The head of a lion was a symbol of a dynasty a Mermnad. The standard size corresponded to the second condition for the present coin.

1 Lydian stater (an obverse) 1 Lydian stater (a reverse)

1 Lydian stater of times reigning an Alyattes (On an obverse two squares are rapped out, on a reverse - a head of a lion)

The Lydian king Coresus (561-46 BC), the son an Alyattes has positioned the standard of cleanliness of metal (98 % of gold and silver) and an official stamp of the king on face side (a head of a lion and a bull). It is an official seal guaranteed quality of a royal coin. Thus the third condition for the coins getting under modern definition has been satisfied.

1 Lydian gold stater (an obverse) 1 Lydian gold stater (a reverse)

the Gold stater of the king of Coresus (On an obverse two squares are rapped out, on a reverse - heads of a lion and a bull)

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