In Utopia, gold represents the goal and prize of human pride and domination. Rich men and women adorn themselves with it to prove their superiority to others; thieves and princes exploit others to get it; nations send men out to fight and die for it. And all this occurs despite the fact that gold is, practically speaking, useless. The Utopians, in contrast to their European counterparts, loathe gold, even though they don’t by any means lack it. The Utopians even fetter their slaves with gold to shame them, just as people in other societies symbolically fetter themselves to their own lust for gold. Ultimately More presents gold as a proud, idle metal: nothing useful comes of it, and it can’t be made into anything useful. We might think, as the Utopians no doubt do, that any society that considers gold to be valuable is a wicked society indeed. Raphael Hythloday, for one, would agree; he thinks that the principle condition which gives rise to gold-lust is the institution of private property, which in his account turns people into ravenous getters and debauched spenders. The Utopians, however, have killed pride and idleness by abolishing private property. When everyone has what they need, materially and spiritually, they have no need of vain superfluities like gold.
Gold Quotes in Utopia
Gold and silver, whereof money is made, they [the Utopians] do so use as none of them doth more esteem it than the very nature of the thing deserveth. And then who doth not plainly see how far it is under iron, as without the which men can no better live than without fire and water?
They [the Utopians] marvel also that gold, which of its own nature is a thing so unprofitable, is now among all people in so high estimation, that man himself, by whom, yea, and for the use of whom, it is so much set by, is in much less estimation than the gold itself.