With the increase of wealth and commerce in Europe, private bankers established themselves in all the principal cities and towns. They re- ceived money on deposit; they managed the money affairs of states and individuals; they lent money to such borrowers as could give the neces- sary security; and they bought and sold bills of exchange, bullion, and coin. The English bankers were not slow in perceiving the profits which the Bank of England derived from the circulation of its notes. They imitated its example. They issued their own notes, payable on demand; and these notes, according to the credit of the issuers, obtained a greater or less circulation in.