What is a Merkle tree?

James D’Angelo has an excellent series of tutorials on the inner workings of blockchains and cryptoledgers.

One of my favorites is by far his explanation of what a Merkle tree and Merkle root are, breaking them down step-by-step.  He bases his code off a really cool blog post from Ken Shirriff: Bitcoin mining the hard way: the algorithms, protocols, and bytes

[Quick endorsement of Ken, I found several of his posts very helpful and cited a number of them in GCON.]

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