I read this paper titled Shelling Out. The Origins of Money by Nick Szabo It starts with the origin of money in the european colony of the americas, how and why a mass scale currency was introduced by colonists upon the native americans.
Based on this anecdote, it discusses some of the important properties of money.
It defines the role of money to a basic human need for co-operation. Money, it says is delayed exchange of altruism on part by humans. And money sould have properties like non-stealable, non-reproducible in order to be valuable. The human society devised multiple tools for this kind. When the problem was met with scale, they invented a "fiat currency", started in China, was way to scale currency, and keep a ledger for supply and demand. The coin system that was first invented in Lydia is the same coin system that we use today, and the fiat currency is still in use. Except now that we have the technology to scale currency without trusting or depending on a government to maintain a ledger.