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How Money Was Born: The Small Seashell and the Fierce Maldivian Queen That Made the Modern World – The Marginalian

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n the fourteenth century, a queen known as Rehendi Khadijah ruled the islands of the Maldives with epic command. One of the earliest women leaders of an Islamic nation, she derived power from both the sultanate and Islam, even as she declined to cover her head — not to mention other parts. She led the kingdom for a third of the century despite two attempts, both by husbands, to depose her. Neither man survived the effort.

All the more remarkable was the Maldivian queen’s role in the dawn of international trade. The chain of atolls, coral reefs, and lowlying islands 600 miles off the tip of India was the center of production for the first global money.

From How Money Was Born: The Small Seashell and the Fierce Maldivian Queen That Made the Modern World – The Marginalian:

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