The Progress Of Bookkeeping Practices
Financial accounting has been termed the language of business. Bookkeeping or accounting is the system which gives a sort of measurement about the business activities. Bookkeeping personnel process the various transactions and activities in a business and turn them into reports and communicate the results to the top management staff in the company. Let us take a look at how the various aspects of accounting developed in course of time. Accounting in the ancient days was not done in an orderly fashion. In the period as early as 8500 B.C. accounting as well as bookkeeping practices were in existence. Archaeologists and researchers have dug out clay tokens which are as old as 8500 B.C. And, that which were found in Mesopotamia were usually in the shape of cones, disks and spheres.
These ancient tokens correspond to commodities such as wool, clothing or bread. They were used in the Middle East in an effort to keep accurate records of various transactions. With the passage of time, these tokens were replaced by wet clay tablets. The experts engaged in research have concluded this to be the beginning stage of the art of writing. Many of the ancient civilizations that keep and maintain the ancient accounting records even now include China, Babylonia, Greece and Egypt. As a matter of fact, in Babylonia of the 3600 B.C. payment of salary was recorded in clay tablets. In addition to that, the erstwhile rulers of these civilizations kept track of their labour and material costs involved in building structures by using various kinds of accounting methods.
Coming to the time of the Middle Ages, during the thirteenth and the fifteenth century periods, trade flourished in cities and places such as Florence, Venice, and Genoa. As a result, there was revolutionary advancement in the field of account keeping methods, thanks to the uncompromising merchants and bankers of that time. During 1220 A.D., one of the best systems in accounting and bookkeeping was kept by a Florence banker. However, the system was considered primitive due to the lack of equality of entries. Double entry records were brought to light in 1340 A.D. in Genoa, Italy. Later, the first systematic record keeping or bookkeeping was formulated by Fra Luca Pacioli, a Franciscan monk. He was one of the most celebrated mathematicians of those days. And he is rightly considered the father of bookkeeping.
The industrial revolution that took place was characterized by revolutionary changes in the treatment of business transactions. The new world order paved way for a specialized field of accounting called cost accounting. This was developed in order to meet the need of doing analyses of various costs. Since these days had witnessed the development of the corporate form of organization, there was the requirement of a separate and independent department to ensure the management's financial representations and their reliability. This is the Information Age, and there have been tremendous advancements in the field of bookkeeping. These changes were brought about by the latest advancements in information technology.
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