Monthly Archives: 02:41 PM

Museum NBB: beavering away at the collection Commodity money

The Museum of the National Bank of Belgium recently came into possession of a number of items which can be categorized as Commodity money. Shell money from Papua New Guinea, knife money from China, axe- and wheel money from Europe, all relics from a more or less distant past where notes and coins were not yet common.

It is also summer holidays for your wallet!

As summer holidays are approaching loads of activities are possible: spending a few days by the seaside, making a trip abroad, taking time to renovate your house… At the Museum of the National Bank of Belgium, summer holidays mean free entrance for everybody during the months of July and August!

Emergency money

The museum moves with the times and introduces a novel way to consult our collections. In the showcase containing emergency money you will notice a QR code to access our online catalogue of the Belgian emergency money of the First World War. Out with those smartphones!

The Carolus guilder: an imperial coin

Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor, was born in Ghent in 1500. His almost legendary reputation is due to the statement that in his empire the sun never set. Charles V ruled over the Burgundian Netherlands, he was King of Spain (and Spain’s overseas colonies) and he was also the ruler of the Holy Roman Empire. During his reign the economy flourished. Herman van der Wee even talks of the emergence of a global economy led by Europe in the 16th century. It is therefore no coincidence that Charles V laid some of the foundations for the modern coinage.