to the present day
Supported by Citi
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The history of money can be traced back over 4,000 years. During this time, currency has taken many different forms, from coins to banknotes, shells to mobile phones.
This gallery displays the history of money around the world.
From the earliest evidence, to the latest developments in digital technology, money has been an important part of human societies. Looking at the history of money gives us a way to understand the history of the world.
From the earliest objects used for exchange, to the technology changing the way we spend
In November 2007 archaeologists found a huge hoard of Roman coins dating to about AD 270 in Beau Street, Bath. This new display focuses on the excavation and cleaning of the coins by British Museum conservator Julia Tubman. Some of the tools Julia used are on display alongside three piles of coins which represent the three types found in the hoard.
9 May 2013
Sophie Mew, British Museum
20 March 2013
Neil Wilkin, curator, British Museum
17 December 2012
Benjamin Alsop, curator, British Museum
Related online tours
Watch British Sign Language videos of objects on display in this gallery.