Numismatics is the study or collection of currency, including coins, tokens, paper money and related objects. While numismatists are often characterised as students or collectors of coins, the discipline also includes the broader study of money and other payment media used to resolve debts and the exchange of goods. Early money used by people is referred to as "Odd and Curious", but the use of other goods in barter exchange is excluded, even where used as a circulating currency (e.g., cigarettes in prison). As an example, the Kyrgyz people used horses as the principal currency unit and gave small change in lambskins; the lambskins may be suitable for numismatic study, but the horses are not. Many objects have been used for centuries, such as cowry shells, precious metals, cocoa beans, large stones, and gems. (Full article...)

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The gold standard is a monetary system in which the standard economic unit of account is a fixed weight of gold. Under the gold standard, currency issuers guarantee to redeem notes in that amount of gold. Governments that employ such a fixed unit of account, and which will redeem their notes to other governments in gold, share a fixed-currency relationship. Supporters of the gold standard claim it is more resistant to cr and debt expansion. Unlike a fiat currency, the money backed by gold cannot be created arbitrarily by government action. This restraint prevents artificial inflation by the devaluation of currency. This is supposed to remove "currency uncertainty," keep the cr of the issuing monetary authority sound, and encourage lending. Nevertheless, countries under the gold standard, like countries with fiat currencies, underwent debt crises and depressions throughout the history of its use.

The gold standard is no longer used in any nation, having been replaced completely by fiat currency. It still is in use by private institutions in the supply of digital gold currency, which uses gold grams as money. Due to its rarity, durability, and the general ease of identification through its unique color, weight, ductility and acoustic properties, gold is a commodity that merchants and traders came to select as a common unit of account - thus it has long been used as a form of money and store of wealth.

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Cr: The Euro Information Website & Sniff
Spanish €2 commemorative coin Centenary of the first ion of Miguel de Cervantes' El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha (2005).

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Newfoundland 2 dollar coin

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A Krugerrand is a South African gold coin, first minted in 1967 in order to help market South African gold. The coins have legal tender status in South Africa. The Krugerrand was the first bullion coin to be tenderable at the market value of its face gold content and the first to contain precisely one ounce of fine gold.

It gets its name from the fact that the obverse shows the face of Paul Kruger, president of the old South African Republic. The reverse depicts a springbok antelope, one of the national symbols of South Africa.


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Cr: User:Timur lenk.
100 000 000 b.‑pengő (1020 pengő). Highest numbered banknote issued during the worst hyperinflation in the history.

Numismatic terminology

  • Bullion – Precious metals (platinum, gold and silver) in the form of bars, ingots or plate.
  • Error – Usually a mis-made coin not intended for circulation, but can also refer to an engraving or die-cutting error not discovered until the coins are released to circulation. This may result is two or more varieties of the coin in the same year.
  • Exonumia – The study of coin-like objects such as token coins and medals, and other items used in place of legal currency or for commemoration.
  • Fineness – Purity of precious metal content expressed in terms of one thousand parts. 90% is expressed as .900 fine.
  • Notaphily – The study of paper money or banknotes.
  • Scripophily – The study and collection of stocks and Bonds.



Numismatic News

January 1, 2008 Venezuela launched a new currency with the new year, lopping off three zeros from denominations in a bid to simplify finances and boost confidence in a money that has been losing value due to high inflation. The new currency is called bolívar fuerte or "strong bolívar". Officials also say it is part of a broader effort to contain rising prices and strengthen the economy. More...

January 1, 2008

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Today at midnight, the Cyprus and the Malta adopted the euro as their official currency; less than four years after their accession to the European Union. The single currency has replaced the Cypriot pound and the Maltese lira at a rate of one euro to 0.585274 Cypriot pound and 0.4293 to the Maltese lira. In both countries the euro was welcomed with outdoor celebrations, including a fireworks display in Malta's capital Valletta. More...

September 26, 2007

Designs for three of four themes proposed for the reverse of 2009 Lincoln cents to honor Abraham Lincoln's life were endorsed by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee. More...

Numismatic topics

Money - Coins - Banknotes - Electronic money - Exchange rate - Legal tender - Clubs - Terminology

Ancient currency: Asia - Byzantium - Greece - Primitive Money - Roman - Indian coinage

Modern currency: Africa - The Americas - Asia and the Pacific - Europe - Bullion coins - Challenge coin - Commemorative coins - Token coins

Economics: Banking - Bonds - Cheques - Cr Cards - Fiat currency - Gold standard - Mints - Monetary union - Reserve currency - Stocks

Production: Coining (machining) - Designers - Die making - Mint (coin) • Coinage Metals: Aluminum - Bronze - Copper - Gold - Platinum - Silver - Tin

Exonumia - Notaphily - Scripophily

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