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    3. 當前位置: 北京翻譯公司主頁 > 分類案例 > 金融投資 >


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      來源:北京新語絲翻譯公司  編輯:xinyusi  發布日期:2013-05-21 15:11

          The Wisconsin Five wanted their money to beget money. Actually, they wanted borrowed

          money to do all the begetting. There is a very long and controversial history about whether or not that’s a good thing.

          Money seems to have sprung up about 9,000 years ago. The first currency was cows. Before we developed crops, our ancestors domesticated wild animals. A few of these species (taurine and zebu) became cattle that provided people with food, milk and a way to carry loads. These cattle also became our first means of exchange.

          Apparently, from the start, homo sapiens have had a fondness for trading just about everything. We loved to barter. If we had a little extra of something, we wanted to trade it for stuff we didn’t have. But as our societies became more complex, it became increasingly cumbersome to work out the exact terms of each barter deal. The cow became the universal medium of exchange. Other items were measured against the value of a cow. One cow equals so many spears or concubines.

          The Chinese were the first to figure out that coin-like objects might be easier to put in your purse than a cow. They started using cowry shells-those shiny porcelain-like sea shells that were easily carried and transferred. Their beauty also gave them intrinsic value. In Africa, cowry shells were also known for their magical powers and were associated with fertility.

          Herodotus, the ancient Greek historian, noted that by 687 BC, the kingdom of Lydia (in what is now western Turkey) used minted coins. Historians believe this might have been the first society to systematically do so. In short order, decorative metals-silver and gold-became the standard means of exchange.

          People were probably long familiar with loans: I will give you my extra cow now, and you will give me back a cow later. Or maybe you will give me back an armful of wheat every new moon for 12 new moons. But at some point-historians don’t know exactly when-people came up with the idea of charging interest: You can have my extra cow now, but only if you give me a cow back next year plus an armful of wheat every month. (Interest may have started

          because animals could reproduce during the period of the loan. Who got the calf?)

          Early on, our hard-working ancestors worried about the impact on society of those who received extra wealth from loans. Money lenders often were viewed as leeching off those who worked hard for their bread. Long before Christ, people were making a clear distinction between earned and unearned income. But more importantly, they worried about the consequences for the community: The indebted could become slaves to their creditors, and destabilize the social order.

          The concept of interest was first codified about 4,500 years ago in Mesopotamia, as that society developed an urban civilization that relied on a division of labor. Wheat growers, fishermen, and herders in the countryside fed the urban population of craftsmen, priests, and government officials. The temple, and later the central government, took in surpluses from the countryside (taxes in the form of agricultural produce) and distributed the goods to the urban dwellers. Everyone had to pay some kind of tribute (taxes) to the temple and the state. If you couldn’t pay, you borrowed either from others or from the central government to cover what you owed.













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