From the Athenian Tetradrachm to the Euro

Studies in European Monetary Integration
Cottrell, Philip
Tortella, Gabriel
Notaras, Gerassimos
Date published: 
June 2007

With the introduction of the euro much recent attention has been focused on the role of currencies and their national and international significance. Whilst much has been made of the euro's achievements in harmonising Europe's financial dealings, it is often forgotten that it is by no means the first pan-national currency to enter circulation. Indeed, as the various contributions to this volume make plain, the euro can in many ways be regarded as a step 'back to the future', that is, a further international currency in a long historical tradition. Covering a time span of some two and a half millennia, the contributions within this volume consider aspects of the European experience from classical antiquity until the beginning of the twenty first century. Subjects covered range from early greek currencies, the classical gold standard, the Bretton Woods system and the birth and introduction of the euro. By taking such a long term view of supra-national currencies, this volume provides a unique perspective, not only to the introduction and development of the euro, and its predecessors, but also on the broader question of the relationship between trade and common currencies.