How red squirrel pelts shaped our monetary systems [Advertiser content from Zelle] by Vox   4 months ago

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The many odd and surprising forms of currency.

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What do red squirrels, salt, cocoa beans, and parmesan cheese have in common? No, they’re not ingredients in some extremely unappetizing dish; in fact, they’ve all been used as a form of currency at some point in the course of human history. It might sound surprising to us today, since none of those things seem particularly valuable, but the history of money is a movement from trading stuff you can use, such as animal pelts to keep you warm, to trading stuff that’s symbolic, like the dollar bills you probably have in your wallet right now.

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