Gold has a place in history regardless of the country of origin. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that gold is seen as a common currency in every country in the world. Gold sees no boundaries. History states that gold coins have been minted since around 670 BC when King Gyges of Turkey minted some gold coins for his personal currency when traveling. The Roman Legions were apprehensive when Julius Caesar first issued gold coins as payment for their service. However, the tune soon changed when the legions realized that the gold coins actually increased in value.
Today, bouillon gold coins have a face value that is pretty much just symbolic. The true value of a gold bouillon is the gold weight by content and the ever-fluctuating price of gold on the world market. A one-ounce gold coin is worth the market value of one ounce of gold minus around 5% for minting and shipping. Of course, bouillon coins come in various common weights: 1/20 of an ounce, 1/10 of an ounce, 1/4 of an ounce, 1/2 of an ounce and finally a one-ounce coin. Gold bouillon is a legal tender and gold coins are guaranteed authentic by the country of origin. Almost anyone can purchase and sell gold coins because of the diverse market acceptance.
In 1489, King Henry VII introduced the first gold currency into the world market. In Britain during World War I, Britain issues banknotes because gold bouillon was needed to finance the war. Soon, these banknotes completely replaced the use of gold sovereign. The gold sovereign ceased gold mint production in 1917 and started again in 1925. Then production was stopped for World War I and restarted in 1957.
There are many famous finds of gold in various regions of the world. These gold finds caused huge gold rushes. Gold rushes caused large amounts of people to migrate to these areas. Such places as the Klondike Gold Rush of Alaska, which occurred at Forty-Mile creek in 1886. In August of 1869, gold was then discovered at Bonanza Creek - a part of Klondike River, Yukon Territory. In the one-year starting in the winter of 1896 and ending in 1897, miners pulled out millions of dollars in gold bouillon. In the year 1915, over $50 million USD was exported from Alaska to the United States. The 1898 gold rush was a modern event. With the addition of media, the gold rush had world wide media coverage. This media coverage sent people rushing to the gold locations.
The history of gold is an amazing display of human endurance. It is estimated that only 120 to 140 thousand tons of gold is available above ground. Surprisingly, there is only $1.8 trillion USD total in gold above the ground. Compare that to the total US debt of almost $7 trillion USD. In addition, only $375 billion USD is held in reserves at banks around the world; $1.3 trillion USD in gold is owned by private parties.
To Match or Not to Match that is Our Question
When many couples make the step to get married, they want to be of one heart, one mind, and one soul. Somewhere along the line many couples have taken the notion that this includes even the eternal signs and symbols of their undying love. Many couples wanting to hold to tradition ask, "are wedding bands supposed to match?" This can seem a daunting question for some couples. But maybe you are two very unique individuals with different tastes in the type of metal you want your band to be constructed from. There are no social or religious traditions that hold a bride and groom to have to buy matching wedding bands. Maybe the groom to be is fond of all platinum jewelry, and wears it on a daily basis. The bride may be very fond of yellow gold and most of what she owns follows that them. In these cases it would make more sense to take an individual perspective on which band to purchase.
Some Unique Options
In the past couple of decades weddings have taken on the flavor of the individuals who are getting married. People are becoming less traditional buy choosing non-traditional wedding gowns, writing their own vows, getting married in unique places, and having themed receptions. Selecting wedding bands is no different. After all, the rings are what you are exchanging with each other as a symbol of your love and union. The rings should be a reflection of who each person is and what they like. Here are some unique options to consider:
- Gold, white gold, silver, and platinum are not the only options for metals that construct wedding bands. There are other choices such as: palladium, rhodium, titanium, and steel.
- There's always the option of having diamonds of other gemstones placed in the bands. This should follow each person's unique taste
- Sometimes men like dragons and women love flowers. It's just a difference in the sexes. After all, some of those opposing qualities are what made you love your sweetie in the first place. Capitalize on it by having band designed that include unique designs such as engravings of flowers, dragons, cars, sports, or any other unique interest. Celebrate each other!
- Maybe he has his grandmother's wedding band and you have your grandfather's wedding band to offer on your special occasion. They certainly may not match, but they will make your day much more meaningful. Especially if the grandparents either had happy marriages or may have passed on.
- If the whole wedding band selection process becomes and issue, opt for very plain bands until you can make a decision. They will be cheaper in the long run and simple to replace.
- One of the most important factors in selecting a wedding band is getting a proper fit. Make sure the jeweler sizes both the bride and groom's fingers. Also, choose a band that looks good on your hand and isn't either too wide or too narrow to look attractive.
- Have a local artist you know and trust design wedding bands that uniquely fit you. If the person knows you both well, maybe he or she will know characteristics about each of you that make designing the rings easy. He or she may want to look at vows or poetry you may read to each other to design a ring around the theme of them.
Whatever your choice, be sure it is something you both will be happy with. This is the person you're committing your life to. Your rings are an outward symbol of the love that's in both of your hearts!
Jewelry can be elegant, sophisticated, beautiful, sassy, and unique. Surprisingly, jewelry is not always chosen because of price. A beautiful, playful piece of costume jewelry may be as enjoyed as a sophisticated, elegant piece of designer jewelry. However, choosing the right piece of jewelry for the right occasion is usually a task that determines the usefulness and appreciation of that particular jewelry piece. For example, a bridal ring as a gift on the first date will definitely have a different meaning than giving a set of Mardi Gras bead necklaces to that same first date. Depending on the occasion, the giving of jewelry can also have a different meaning.
Purchasing an appropriate piece of jewelry is a task best undertaken by those that have a love of shopping and a love of jewelry. Depending on the purpose of the proposed jewelry piece, you may choose to shop at a department store, a retail store, or a specialty shop. All of these establishments have their advantages with the major difference being the target audience reached.
Department stores tend to target a medium to high spending demographic. Macys is going to be a lot more expensive than say JC Penney's. A regular retail shop is going to be on the low-end to medium-end of the jewelry fashion and price range. A store like Wal-Mart is going to offer a wide range of jewelry that can range from cheap costume jewelry to some medium grades of diamonds and gold. Specialty stores can be the 'creme de la creme' of the jewelry world. Depending on the quality of the specialty store, the jewelry will range in individual piece quality and price. Wherever you choose to purchase your jewelry, use caution and shop around. Remember the saying "all that glitters is not gold". Just because a specialty shop has a pretty storefront does not mean it has higher quality merchandise than other jewelry shops.
Choosing the right piece of jewelry to wear is best decided on an occasion to occasion basis. Wearing that expensive diamond and emerald necklace to the beach is probably not a good idea. Maybe a better idea is to wear that gaudy, shell beach necklace you got at the discount store. Using the same logic, wearing a gaudy, brightly colored piece of costume jewelry with your formal attire for that special occasion is not as well taken as wearing that simply elegant pearl necklace. Depending on the occasion, jewelry will take on different elements of appropriateness.
There are many types, styles and colors of jewelry to meet just about any occasion. They range from man made stones and gems used in the creation of special pieces to natural gems, stones and metals taken from the ground. There are also people that believe in superstitions that follow many jewelry items such as charm bracelets. Some people are allergic to certain types of jewelry components and must take measures to ensure that they do not have allergic reactions. One of the most common reactions is to jewelry that contains nickel.
Men have lost their lives in search of precious jewels and many more have spent a wage packet or two on one special jewelry piece for a loved one. One thing for certain is that our love affair with jewelry remains as strong as ever. Next time you think of buying a piece of jewelry, just spare a thought for the effort that has gone into making such a fine piece. You may also find that saying the right words, at the right time are received just as warmly and will cost you a lot less.