Post Eagle Newspaper


Feb 25, 2024

45°F, few clouds
New Jersey

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The word for today is SALARY.
A SALARY is a fixed amount of compensation for services paid to a person on a regular basis.

The Latin word – SALARIUM –  means – MONEY GIVEN TO ROMAN SOLDIERS TO BUY SALT. One of the earliest and purest materials used in ancient commerce was common salt. It was formed through the process of evaporation in the salt water of the sea or salt springs in natural rock hollows and man made basins. Salt was also used as a food preservation technique in ancient times and is a necessary part of the human diet. Salt flourished in the area of commerce because it can be easily transported and is common. Salt became a form of payment in ancient markets and trade circles. Eventually a different currency came into play but the importance of salt did not fade. Roman soldiers who worked all day waging wars and building roads soon found that days spent working in the sun and sweating depleted  the supply of salt that is necessary for every human being to survive. In order to ensure that the soldiers received the salt they needed, a special portion of their wages was set aside to buy salt. It became known as the salarium. Eventually though the connection to salt became distant and salarium changed to mean any monetary compensation for work done.