Articles

As the world headed for war, it soon became clear for all involved governments that they urgently needed diamond reserves in order to convert industries for war purposes; the industrial-grade stones were needed for sophisticated production of war vehicles, planes and rockets. This had the American government in conflict with De Beers, which refused...

The thought of diamonds have spurred most peoples' imagination at some point in their lives - often as children. Many tales have been told, written or shot as movies about these incredibly valuable stones, of enough glitter to reflect the love for a special girl. But as we grow older we sometimes run in to facts that disenchant us from...

Born in 1671, John Law was the son of a Scottish goldsmith of considerable social importance. Being the oldest out of nine surviving children, and being perceived as gifted, John was given the greatest care and education after the father suddenly died. According to A.W. Wiston-Glynn, the youngster took a liking to mathematics and then to the nature...

If you have followed this series on various historical examples of money this far, you probably know by now that seashells were used as money as well. Nick Szabo has described such uses among North American tribes and among European settlers. To further dispel the notion that such monetary systems randomly emerged due to some idiosyncratic...

Salt is boring. But it still gives us quite a good example of how a commodity can evolve and then devolve as money; this consequently helps us better understand some of the proper frameworks for studying money. Historically, salt was often used to prolong the lifespan of food products, and so functioned as a vital hedge against periods of hunger....

In his 'Fiat Money Inflation in France', Cornell University co-founder Andrew Dickson White has given a detailed, chronological account of the rise and fall of the assignat paper money experiment in Revolutionary France. This experiment is not to be confused with the monetary mismanagement caused by John Law less than a century prior. It should...

Money is in some regards not uniform in its externalities. An appreciation of the value of the USD, for example, has other externalities that an appreciation of the value of gold. We know from history that gold vaults and mines have been obvious military objectives in war, and a price increase of that money magnifies the temptation to capture...

Car Nicobar is a rather solitary, tropical island situated between India in the west and Thailand and Myanmar in the east. Paul Einzig, in his work 'Primitive Money', has summarized the documented use of coconuts as currency there. One of these sources is George Whitehead, British Government Agent on the island at the start of the 20th century....

Leaving Africa for the West Indies, it is time to explore sugar as a form of money - something which I briefly did in an earlier article on the subject. The end goal of this article is to try to apply the framework of hard and easy money on some of the rich research conducted and summarized by Stuart B. Schwartz and his fellow sugar historians in ...

Is it creditable to any Government, and particularly a Christian Government, that any portion of its revenue, not to speak of the largest, is raised from such a fearfully destructive source? - Lagos Echo, 1894 [1]

Effective immediately, all new and semi-annual ratings are on hold. This is a decision resulting from a realization that the time I have spent on detailing the history, ecology, technology and centralization of many altcoins are vastly better spent by studying money protocols in general, and Bitcoin properties in particular. I have always applied a...