Akan gold weight, British West Africa, n.d.


These brass weights were used by the Akan people of modern day Ghana and the Ivory Coast for measuring gold dust between the late thirteenth and early twentieth centuries. They were cast into geometric shapes and figures of animals and people. These weights set a standard for measuring gold dust and made it easier to use gold dust as currency. The weights’ varied forms reflect Akan culture as well as cultural interaction between West African, North African, and European traders over five centuries.

Date Made: n.d.

Location: Currently not on view

Place Used: GhanaAssociated Place: British West Africa

See more items in: Work and Industry: National Numismatic Collection, West African Currency


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: Benjamin Stack, Harvey G. Stack, and Norman Stack

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: NU.77.38.063Accession Number: 1977.1211Catalog Number: 77.38.063

Object Name: Figurealternative currencyOther Terms: Figure; Africa; British West Africa, Ashanti

Physical Description: bronze (overall material)cast (overall production method/technique)bronze/gray (overall color)blue corrosion (overall color)Measurements: overall: 6.28 cm x 3 cm x 2.74 cm; 2 15/32 in x 1 3/16 in x 1 3/32 in

Guid: http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a9-20b0-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa

Record Id: nmah_910807

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