Posted 21 October 2006 - 10:41 PM
Well silver and gold are just precious metal and everybody loves them.
Actually they were not used as floating currency but as hard currency,as they were more used for insurance purposes. An ordinary person would not carry a Liang of Gold or Silver. For example, the emperor may give some ingots of gold to a official, these ingots however could not be used to buy stuff for example a coke in the market, as no one could break that up. Usually ingots of gold were used in big transaction, for example when the government needed to award the troops, a shipment of gold would be sent and each soldier would receive his share. Once a soldier received his share of gold, which is now a small amount, he could go exchange it intofloating currency, ie, the bronze or some kind of metal coins and later paper currency.
Silver and gold were only the base of the tokens.