Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Ancient Finance from HBS

The HBS Working Knowledge site has an interesting article by William Goetzmann on financial instruments back in the time of the Romans and Greeks. For instance on checks:
"...bankers' checks written in Greek on papyri appeared in ancient Egypt as far back as 250 B.C. Papyri preserved well in Egypt thanks to its arid climate, but Goetzmann thinks it's safe to say such checks changed hands throughout the Mediterranean world.

"So the whole tradition of bank checks predates the current era and has its roots at least in Hellenistic Greek times," he says."

VERY interesting! Great for a money and banking class!

I may have to buy his book The Origins of Value as well. Although I have been told "no more Big books."

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