This page explores and celebrates the wonders of coin collecting, a hobby enjoyed by millions. It covers both ancient and modern coins and hopes to offer a friendly and approachable introduction for children and adults alike.
As any enthusiast can tell you, coins are much more than just the change in your pocket. They represent history, art, culture, and commerce. The art on the coin represents the civilization that produced it - its values, history, and aspirations - and the skill with which the coin was produced reflects the artistry and technology of that culture.
Coins are small pieces of metal (or sometimes other materials) used as tokens for exchange (you can buy things with them). They are usually flat and round in shape (although there are interesting exceptions) and coins of a particular denomination will usually have a standardized size and weight.
The collection and study of coins, tokens, and paper money is known as numismatics ("numismatic" = "of coins"). Numismatists include coin collectors, coin dealers, as well as formal scholars who study commerce and history. Coin dealers not only buy and sell coins, but they also authenticate them and grade them for sale.
Some people collect coins from a particular country (often their own) or from a particular time. Others collect whatever coins they find interesting. Those with a large budget may indulge in rare coins while others merely search the change in their pocket for treasure. For example, most US pennies are worth just one cent, but if you should be so lucky as to find a 1909 S VDB penny it is worth hundreds of dollars!
At present, this web site discusses the hobby of coin collecting, coin terminology (terms used to describe coins), how coins are made (minting), primitive money, ancient coins (Biblical coins, Greek coins, and Roman coins), modern US coins, and gold and silver coins. Other subjects may be developed in the future.