A circa 1960 afi afi oiya eight strand shell money necklace with old white bone or shell spacers,Malaita, Solomon Islands
Afi’afi’oiya, or interrupted shell currency necklace, is the native name for a necklace of strings of money shells broken up into distinct segments by spacers.
The components of this circa 1960 example were probabluy salvaged form an older piece, since thespacers are pierced to accomodate 10 strands - so presumably two stands have been lost. It consists of smooth white shell cirrency discs with a single , black disk before each of the four spacers. It is worn loosely around the neck by men and women,
<>p>The value of traditional shell currency persists in the Solomon Islands, particularly in Malaita, where it is in great demand for the payment of traditional debts such as bride price and compensation, or as a status adornment to be worn on ceremonial occasions – after all, everyone else knows exactly what it is worth! (Value is determined by the l quality of the discs and the length and number of the strings).
Length: 92 cm / 36 inches, excluding ties.
Reference: Body Ornaments of Malaita, Solomon Islands, by Ben Burt, British Museum Press, 2009