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Ancient Pay Stub Shows Workers Were Paid In Beer

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene. Think your bosses don't pay you enough? Well, imagine if you could be paid entirely in beer. The British Museum has got its hands on a 5,000-year-old pay stub from ancient Mesopotamia. It recorded the amount of beer paid to a worker as income. This practice was not uncommon in the ancient world. It happened in ancient Egypt as well. But think again before you get too envious. Historians say this brew was thick and starchy, basically liquid bread. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.