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the manufacture, or minting, of coins. Initially coins were minted by private individuals (in Russia these people were known as livtsi and serebrianiki). Subsequently the manufacture of coins became a state monopoly and was carried out at state mints. In the USSR coins of small denominations are minted at the Mint of the Ministry of Finance of the USSR in Leningrad: nickel-silver coins in denominations of 1 ruble and 50, 20, 15, and 10 kopecks are minted there, as are brass coins in denominations of 5, 3, 2, and 1 kopeck.
In the ancient world coins were made of pure gold and silver (Greece) or their alloy (Lydia). Later copper alloys were added to the coin metal. An increase in the amount of alloy above the fixed standard led to the debasement of coins. When monometallism was practiced, full-value gold or silver coins were minted, whose face value equaled the value of their metal content. With the development of capitalism most countries reached a fixed standardization for assaying currency metals. In minting less than full value coins of small denominations, copper and silver were gradually replaced by nickel and bronze alloys.