The concept of the origin of money has been a topic of interest and discussion to almost all schools of economic thought. However, in spite of minor differences of interpretation, most views share an underlying core principal about the rise and origin of money, implicit in which is the central belief that barter exchange preceded the money economy. This new book offers a challenge to this belief, and argues that it is only by making this challenge that we will be in the position to accurately trace the roots of money. In an ambitious undertaking, the book has gathered and classified the major theories of the origin of money and assessed each at length, before presenting an innovative, alternative theoretical framework for the formation and the rise of money. It blends the objections made against the principal explanations of the origins of money and presents a terminological clarification between what can or cannot be classified as money. This study has wide-ranging implications, in terms of both the operation of the economy and the implementation of monetary policy, and will be of interest to all those working in the areas of finance, monetary economics, economic theory and the history of economic thought.