The aim of this thesis is to provide a holistic analysis and an economic understanding of Bitcoin, answering two key questions: (i) Why do bitcoins have value? (ii) Why and how will governments seek to regulate the use of bitcoin? To answer these questions, the thesis begins with a discussion of money itself, developing a framework of different types of monies in terms of their uses and properties that will form the basis of the analysis. Based on the technical properties of Bitcoin the framework developed above is then applied to identify bitcoin as a digital commodity money. Following this identification, potential uses of bitcoin supporting its value will be discussed, drawing particular attention to Bitcoin s resilience to regulation. In addition, real world examples of other commodity monies will be used to support the claim that bitcoin may circulate without use value and state backing. Governments tend to seek economic control through controlling money, and it will be argued that there are good reasons to expect governments to be hostile towards widespread use of bitcoin. This is to be expected, as use of bitcoin undermines governments capacity to control money.