Bonds have been around much longer than one might think. Many historians believe that the government of Venice, Italy might have issued some of the first bonds to fund war efforts in the 1100s. Instead of taxing citizens, the Venetian government borrowed money and promised to pay it back with interest.
While driving in Italy several years ago, I saw a flash as I was driving over a bridge on the way to Venice in a rental car. About a year later, I received a hefty ticket in the mail. I suppose it's possible that the ancient bridge I was driving over when I got the ticket could have been one of the first projects to be funded with bonds. Irony!
Source: Goetzman, William (2016). Money Changes Everything: How Finance Made Civilization Possible. Princeton University Press