Localised & ancient monies
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About Ethnographic Money

Ethnographic is quite a broad term as it covers all forms of ‘traditional’ and what we consider localised and ancient monies other than the usual acceptable metal objects.

The latter have more of a resemblance to our current forms of money – or tokens. Tokens are more a modern version of a ‘traded’ item.(i.e. an object given a ‘value’) Africa saw copper become its ‘red gold’ and offers a fascinating study of objects which could be cumbersome to transport – but also had a dual purpose in as much as many were utilised as decorative objects (bangles etc.)

The very nature of some decorative objects does question at times whether their initial use was monetary or decorative/ceremonial. But even so, these objects were undoubtably traded in some form or another. Lets also not forget that many monetary objects were intended to be decorative/ceremonial acting as a display of wealth.

Not too removed from todays customs of wearing gold, diamonds etc.