This book presents a detailed and surprising history of money from Charlemagne's reform in approximately AD 800 to the end of the Silver Wars in 1896. It also summarizes twentieth century development and places them in their historical context.
"A History of Money" presents a detailed history of money from Charlemagne's reform in approximately AD 800 to the end of the Silver Wars in 1896. It also offers a summary of twentieth century events and an analysis of how the past relates to present problems.
Examining how virtually all modern difficulties associated with money have precedents in the past, the volume discusses how a mercantile system developed alongside simple, metallic, medieval coinage, in a way which has important lessons for the countries now emerging from central planning. It covers the great periods of monetary disputes: Henry VIII and Sir Thomas Gresham, Isaac Newton's Great Recoinage of 1696, Ricardo and the Bullion Committee Report, and the much neglected but increasingly relevant issues of bimetallism and European monetary union in the late nineteenth century. The monetary theories of such diverse figures as Locke, Defoe, Swift, and Sir Walter Scott are discussed as well as those of many economists. The coverage is international, and includes the controversial private banking period in the early United States between Independence and the Civil War.