chapter  5
Render unto Caesar
Pages 45

The former words attributed to Julius Caesar, chronicled by the Roman historian Cassius Dio in the heyday of imperium , and the latter text from the 1992 amendment to the Maastricht Treaty, were written almost eighteen centuries apart. Yet the message contained within both is exactly the same. In the above extracts, the central authorities of the dying Roman republic and the nascent European Union establish specifi c rules for the minting and printing of state-mandated currency to replace existing systems. In doing so, both Rome and Brussels adopted a medium of exchange and propaganda which from its very inception has been among the most powerful – perhaps the most powerful – of vehicles for the transmission of political ambitions and imperial dreams. This vehicle is a single currency.