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Central banking in Europe always used to be the tantamount to issuing and managing national currencies: a national currency became an indispensable ingredient of national sovereignty; national banknotes, which occupied an increasingly important role in the circulation of money and eventually replaced par-value gold and silver coins as legal tender, communicated national cultures and symbols. Concurrently with increasing role of banknotes as a means of payment in modern economic life, theirs issuers, the central banks, grew in importance and the conduct of monetary policy became an essential part of the nation's economic politics.
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