Currencies consigned to history

FEATURE - "A piece of Europe in our hands" is how Romano Prodi, president of the European Commission, greeted the launch of the euro.

At last, the citizens of Europe had been given a tangible, everyday symbol of the region's political and economic integration.

Jonathan Williams, one of the curators of an exhibition on the changing currencies of Western Europe at the British Museum, says: "The euro is seen by the Commission as one of the major motors of creating a new Western Europe-wide identity

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