The Mystery of Numismatics
Collecting currency is something which appeals to all manner of different people. Age, gender, colour, creed, sexuality – these are all completely irrelevant in the world of coins. Here there are purely the practices of finding, buying, selling and swapping.
Of course, coin collecting isn’t anything new, it has been around since…. well, probably since coins first existed. And it isn’t something that is exclusive to England either; there are numismatists in countries all around the planet.
So why is coin collecting so commonplace and why is it so very popular?
Well, it would appear that many human beings have an inbuilt desire to hoard items from one category or another. For some it may be beer mats, for another American licence plates. Most of us just seem to love saving things. And coins are an excellent choice when it comes to collecting for a number of different reasons.
On a practical level, some items are far more feasible to amass than others. For example, if you decided to collect traffic cones (yes, some people really do! Check out No 27 - HERE ) then the chances are you wouldn’t be able to fit too many of these in your home….. Coins therefore are a great choice as they actually take up a relatively small amount of space (they are also far more aesthetically pleasing and will not give visitors the distinct impression that you have road works in your living room).
As long as you don’t set your sights on super-rare specimens, then being a numismatist won’t normally break the bank. Many coins can be found in everyday change to begin with and the whole business of looking for them is a great deal of fun in itself. Of course, there is the downside of The Royal Mint bringing out so many of their new releases as ‘purchase only’ items….. But we are all hoping this will change jolly soon when they finally realise (these things take a painfully long time for some!) that the majority of collectors are getting thoroughly p*ssed off.
Your collection doesn’t need to contain hundreds of gold sovereigns to have street cred; coins just look nice. There is something genuinely impressive about a drawer or folder full of different currencies or denominations. Caring for your coins, carefully putting them away or showing them off to friends gives you a real sense of pride and accomplishment. And if you are already a collector, you will fully understand this.
Squirrelling away certain coins now could well pay off big-time in years to come. You may plan on doing this for yourself or so that your children reap the rewards. The more you learn about numismatics, the more you understand which coins are most likely to go up in value in the future. So the chances are you will actually learn quite a lot without even trying - simply because you have a genuine interest in it all.
© Article and images (except where stated) copyright Mik Smith 2019