What is Numismatics: Did You Know?

Feb 11, 2021

Numismatics is the study or collection of coins, tokens, metals, paper currency and related objects. The word numismatics is borrowed from the Latin word numismatis, meaning coin, currency, or stamp on a coin. This field also includes the broader study of money as a method of payment that people use to pay for goods or resolve debts. Although the terms numismatist and coin collector can be used interchangeably, numismatists approach the subject of coins from a cultural, historical, or artistic standpoint. Coin collectors acquire coins based on their goals, while numismatic hosts are professionals that study coins and currency.

Often referred to as the hobby of kings, coin collecting has historically been practiced by royalty and the wealthy elite. Understanding the value and history of coins is crucial to numismatists. Coins can be bullion, proof, ancient, circulating, rare, or commemorative and can have inscriptions such as the year it was minted, the mint mark captivating designs, the face value, fineness, or mottos such as in “God We Trust.” However, a master at the study of Numismatics will look for much more.

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