Currency piece from the Mambilla people of Cameroon. Throughout Africa, objects made of iron were intrinsically valuable as weapons, farming implements, and other utilitarian items. During the pre and post contact period in Africa, metal was highly valued as standardized currency in what we now consider the "trade and barter" system. Pieces like these were used to purchase animals and land, as well as for žbridepriceÓ in marriage contracts.
Height: 18.5", (19.5" on stand)
Provenance: Ex Private Collection. Collected about 50 years ago by a Belgian living in the D.R. Congo.