When did people start using money?

Around the year 1200 B.C., people in China started using mollusk shells called cowries to trade for goods. Cowries became the world’s first form of currency, and they were adopted by civilizations across the world and used until the middle of the 20th century.

Some form of shell money appears to have been found on almost every continent populated by humans: America, Asia, Africa and Australia. The shell most widely used worldwide as currency was the shell of Cypraea Moneta, the money cowry. This species is most abundant in the Indian Ocean, and was collected in the Maldive Islands, in Sri Lanka, along the Malabar coast, in Borneo and on other East Indian islands, and in various parts of the African coast from Ras Hafun to Mozambique. Cowry shell money was an important part of the trade networks of Africa, South Asia, and East Asia.


Picture Credit : Google