History of compensation... References to wages in some form can be tracked all the way back to Ancient Greece, Ancient Egypt and Ancient Rome.

In ancient times salt was highly valued and it was used as a method of trade and currency. Not only did salt serve to flavor and preserve food, it was a good antiseptic.

In Ancient Rome the busiest road leading to the city was the Via Salaria, the salt route. A soldier's pay, which partly consisted of salt, was known as solarium argentum, from which we derive the word salary. A soldier's salary was cut if he "was not worth his salt," an expression still used today. Similarly, the Latin word 'salarium' linked employment, salt, and soldiers and has defined a form of work-for-hire ever since.  

More tomorrow...