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.
Admission free, open late Fridays
The Citi Money Gallery runs a range of educational programmes for school groups from KS2 through to KS5. Find out more
Chinese Ming banknote, China, AD
More about this object
A love story on a coin
Ben Alsop, Curator of the Citi Money Gallery, found a love note inscribed on the back of a coin in the British Museum. The inscription was simple: ‘From Fred to Nellie, France 1916’. There was no additional information to identify who this couple might be.
This is the tale of how Ben used a blog post to hunt down Fred and Nellie and uncover a 100-year-old love story.
From the earliest objects used for exchange to the technology changing the way we spend.
11 March 2016
Heidi Hinder, artist and designer
27 August 2015
Amelia Dowler, Curator of Greek and Roman Provincial Coins, British Museum
17 August 2015
Ben Alsop, Project Curator, Coins and Medals collection, British Museum