Front Page Titles (by Subject) Various Forms of Coins. - Money and the Mechanism of Exchange
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Various Forms of Coins. - William Stanley Jevons, Money and the Mechanism of Exchange 
Money and the Mechanism of Exchange (New York: D. Appleton and Co. 1876).
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Various Forms of Coins.
From time to time coins have been manufactured in very many forms, although circular coins vastly predominate in number. Among the innumerable issues of the German states may be found octagonal and hexagonal coins. A singular square coin, with a circular impress in the centre, was issued from Salzburg by Rudbert in 1513. Siege-pieces have been issued in England and elsewhere in the form of squares, lozenges, etc. Some of the most extraordinary specimens of money ever used are the large plates of pure copper which circulated in Sweden in the eighteenth century. These were about three-eighths of an inch in thickness, and varied in size, the half-daler being 3½ inches square, and the two-daler piece as much as 7½ inches square, and 3½ pounds in weight. As the whole surface could not be covered with a design, a circular impress was struck near to each corner, and one in the centre, so as render alteration as difficult as possible.
Among Oriental nations the shapes of coins are still more curious. In Japan, the principal part of the circulation consists of silver itzibus, which are oblong, flat pieces of silver, covered on both sides with designs and legends, the characters being partly in relief and partly incised. The smaller silver coins have a similar form. Among the minor Japanese coins are found large, oval, moulded pieces of copper or mixed metal, each with a square hole in the centre. The Chinese cash are well known to be round discs of a kind of brass, with a square hole in the centre to allow of their being strung together. The coins of Formosa are similar, except that they are much larger and thicker. All the copper and base metal coins of China, Japan, and Formosa are distinguished by a broad flat rim, and they have characters in relief upon a sunk ground, somewhat in the manner of Boulton and Watt's copper pence. They are manufactured by moulding the metal, and then filing the protuberant parts smooth. Such coins stand wear, and preserve their design better than European coins, but they are easily counterfeited.
The most singular of all coins are the scimitar-shaped pieces formerly circulated in Persia.