Everyone knows that NFTs are released mostly on Ethereum, especially in the ERC-721 format, but perhaps not everyone knows that this format was offered by William Entriken, Dieter Shirley, Jacob Evans and Nastassia Sachs only in January 2018. Still, the CryptoPunks, which were the first NFTs to ever become famous, were released in June 20.
Actually, it was this NFT experiment of the CryptoPunks that inspired what would become the Ethereum ERC-721 standard the following year. The very first known NFT to be released was Quantum, created by Kevin McCoy and Anil Dash in May 2014. It was registered on Namecoin’s blockchain and sold to the same Dash for $4.
On the other hand, the first known NFT on Ethereum was Etheria. It was introduced at the DEVCON 1 in London in October 2015, only three months after the birth of the Ethereum blockchain. In 2014, just a year before the launch of the Ethereum project, the first NFT marketplace was created.
We are talking about Monegraph which was founded by the authors of Quantum, McCoy and Dash. This very first marketplace was launched to record works of art on the Bitcoin blockchain.
In 2014, Monegraph was the first known startup in the world to provide artists with blockchain-based tools to monetize their digital works.
At the time TechCrunch also took care of this project, declaring that it used encryption to bring scarcity to the online art sector.