- Museum number
Raffia woven cloth with a fringe on three sides. Possibly used as currency.
Length: 100 centimetres (Without fringes. Register 1951: 23 1/2".)
Length: 63 centimetres (Without fringes. Register 1951: 23 1/4".)
- Curator's comments
Raffia woven cloth of stiffer texture to [Af1951,04.117] & with a fringe on 3 sides.
Belgian Congo. Typical of the Bambunda [sic; should be Babunda according to CDMS staff, 1982] tribe to the west of Lele territory. The fibres are taken not from the Raffia textiles (Mambondu) used by Lele & Bushongo weavers but from an unidentified palm (native name Mayanda) the cloth is much stronger than Lele cloth & is sought after by them for its hard wearing properties.
Cloth made from raffia or pineapple leaf fibre was often used as currency in Congo. Cloth was a convenient means of exchange as it was portable, durable and divisible. Strips of cloth would be used individually as smaller money or sewn together and become a more valuable unit.
In some areas cloth was used to pay dues, fines, services or tributes, whereas in others it was also used in everyday transactions in the marketplace.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Africa, Oceania and the Americas
- Registration number