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Money can be made of many different things.

Most commonly, coins are made of metals such as copper, nickel, aluminium, steel, zinc, etc. In the past, coins were also made of silver or gold before those metals became too expensive for ordinary coins. During wartime some countries actually made coins from cardboard, plastic, or even porcelain due to metal shortages.

The metals are often alloyed; that is, they're melted and mixed together to create a mixture with characteristics that both let it take a clean image from a coin press while holding up to wear. Some countries make coins in layers (e.g. steel plated with copper, or copper clad with brass), again so the coins have characteristics needed for use in commerce. Still other coins are "bi-metallic" or even "tri-metallic", consisting of alternating rings of different metals that make them easily distinguished on sight.

Currency, usually called "paper money", is printed on various paper-like materials. Some countries like the US use a blend of plant fibers (cotton and linen) that creates a strong base. Others have recently introduced plastic or plastic/fiber blends that are more resistant to wear than traditional paper-like materials.

Many other materials have been used as money over the centuries in addition to metal and paper-like substances. Some societies have used shells, carved stones, even animal claws or furs as a medium of exchange.

The important thing about any form of money isn't that it necessarily has any value in and of itself, but rather than both the person spending it and the person receiving it agree on the value represented by a particular piece. In modern society that extends beyond just the two people in a transaction - the members of the society as a whole have to be (mostly) in agreement about the value represented by whatever is being spent. For example, a €100 note is just a piece of paper and plastic worth a few cents by itself, but everyone agrees that it represents a certain amount of buying power.

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โˆ™ 2015-03-23 21:55:05
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Q: What is money made of?
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