Most things in life -- automobiles, misstresses, cancer -- are important only to those who have them. Money, in contrast, is equally important to those who have it and those who don't. Both, accordingly have a concern for understanding it. Both should proceed in the full confidence that they can." So writes John Kenneth Galbraith in this book. In it he offers a broad, professional view of the working of money as illuminated by its history from the kings of Lydia down to he present turmoil. No one has ventured such a sweeping and comprehensive look at the subject before; certainly no one has brought to it such a combination of literary skill, historical knowledge and professional ecoomic competence. Henceforth all who speak on money -- and all who merely wish to know about money -- will have to read this book. And it will not be a chore. They will find it an interesting, amusing, and rewarding task.