The first European bank note.

Europe used to be a continent with a great number of currencies. Most European countries now have the Euro as the their currency.

But where did it all begin?

Stockholms Banco (also known as the Palmstruch’s Bank, Swedish: Palmstruchska banken) was the first European bank to print banknotes. It was founded in 1657 by Johan Palmstruch in Stockholm, began printing banknotes in 1661. On July 16,1661 to be precise.The bank ran into financial difficulties though and was liquidated in 1667. Stockholms Banco was the immediate precursor to the central bank of Sweden, founded in 1668 as Riksens Stnders Bank and renamed in 1866 as Sveriges Riksbank, which is the world’s oldest surviving central bank.

Eventually the banknotes caused more problems than they were worth – so many people used the notes and lent them that the bank was unable to honour requests for the credit to be transferred into metal coinage. Eventually the bank collapsed and the Swedish government took over, and the bank’s founder, Johan Palmstruch, was imprisoned.

Ironically when the majority of the EU signed up to the Euro, Sweden kept on to their Krona.