In 524 BC, a group of pirates set sail for Sifnos, an ancient Greek island famed for its vast gold and silver mines.
The mines of Sifnos were unparalleled in the ancient world.
They produced so much gold and silver that the local government at Sifnos could erect countless monuments, invest in new public works, and still easily have a substantial balance remaining at the end of each year to distribute to the citizens.
When the pirates arrived, they robbed the island of 100 talents of gold, an unfathomable sum at the time.
In the ancient world, a talent was a unit of weight equivalent to 26 kilograms, or about 836 troy ounces.
So 100 talents of gold would be worth just shy of $100 million today, ranking that ancient robbery as one of the biggest heists in history.
It’s amazing that thousands of years have passed, and yet that very same gold could still be traded in modern financial markets.
There are few other assets on the planet that have had such a long history of value, durability, and marketability.
Gold very clearly holds its value over time, whether over decades or millennia.
This post was published at Sovereign Man on December 6, 2016.