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The Pawnbrokers Symbol

Over the years the symbol has altered slightly but is still recognisable as one of the oldest professions in the world.

The Pawnbrokers Symbol

The pawnbrokers’ symbol is one that you will see worldwide. But what does it means and where exactly did it come from? Don’t panic, there’s no need to turn to Google! We’re ready to tell you all we know about the renown sign of the pawnbroker.

What does it look like?

The pawnbrokers symbol consists of three spheres suspended from a (usually curved) bar. The balls are hanging at two different lengths, perhaps representing the balance of trading ‘like for like’.

 

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Where does it come from?

This signature image is attributed to the Medici family who started up the one of the first trading pawn banks in Florence, Italy. The symbol was worn on the family’s coat of arms and soon became the logo of pawnbroking. There is an old legend that tells the story of a relation to the Medicis who apparently slayed a giant with three sacks of rocks therefore could easily have been the inspiration for the family crest.

1859-Pawnshop

 

How has it changed?

It is said that the golden ‘globes’ started as flat coins however to attract more attention they were then changed to spheres. Over the years the symbol has altered slightly but is still recognisable as one of the oldest professions in the world. At Nikolas Patrick we proudly display this pawnbroking symbol at both of our stores and its a constant feature in our branding.

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