THE FIRST COINED MONEY
Coined money la a very (indent lnventic n, Whf.n preoloua metals -gold, allvtr, copper, or iron began to bo used for payment, they were at first simply weighed. Even We atill spoak cf a pound Instead of ft aoverelgn. The ntx h . step was to leeuo pieces of gold and silver properly weighed, aud then to mark the exact weight and value on each piece- This was doae In Assyria and Babylonia, where we find shekels or pounds of gold and allver. It was the Greeks, tin Greeks of Phcooa*, m lonto, who m the eoventh century bo., first oonoelvad the Idea of coining money, that m, of atamplug on oaoh their oliy arms, the phoca or /seal, thns giving the warranty of their State for the right weight m value of those p'.eoes. From Pnocwi, thh «tt of coining apread rapidly to the other Greek towna of Asia Minor, and was theuoe transplanted to iE^ina, the Pdloponaeeai, Athooa, and the Greek colonies In ktr\o% and In Italy. Too weight of the moat anolent gold coin In all those oountriea was originally the same aa that of the ano'ent Bibylonlan gold ah,ekel, only stamped with the arms of each country, which thus made Itself responsible for its proper weight. And this gold shekel or pound, m spite of historical dlatarbanoaa, has lit Id its own through centuries,
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