Numismatics, or coin collectors, have been around almost as long as money itself. Since money was created, people have been interested in collecting different kinds. As a metal refiner, Manhattan Gold & Silver sometimes finds itself dealing with numismatics interested in scrapping their extra coins. However, it’s interesting to note that not all numismatics are coin collectors. The field (numismatics is also the study of currency) is generally divided by three more subfields:
• Exonumia is the study of coins or coin-like objects that are not legal tender. Typically, this includes fares such as tokens, medallions, and even credit cards. Because the objects are coin-like, many numismatics also consider themselves to be exonumists.
• Notaphily is like the opposite of exonumia in that it is the study of paper money, not coins. It is generally believed that paper money collectors have been around since the creation of paper money. However, the field was not officially recognized until the 1970s when countries began to release catalogs of their printed money.
• Scripophily is perhaps the most unique of the numismatic fields. Scripophilics study and collect stocks and bonds. These tend be quite interesting and beautiful collections, because many such documents have intricate and impressive engravings. Also, because of the amount of writing on these documents, they tend to tell a deeper story than coins and paper money.
Although we only deal with traditional numismatics for metal coins, it’s worth noting that the field expands to cover such a wide amount of interests.