KING MANILLA CURRENCY, West Africa

All of our manillas have been vetted by Dan Mato as authentic, from the 16th - 19th C., probably on the newer rather than older end.


King Manilla Currency 21-26 (top to bottom)



King Manilla Currency 27-31 (top to bottom)


King Manilla Currency 21
10.5" long x 6.25" high x 1.5" wide
$300

King Manilla Currency 22
10.5" long x 6.5" high x 1.5" wide
$300


King Manilla Currency 23
9" long x 6.5" high x 1.5" wide
$300

King Manilla Currency 24
10.25" long x 6.75" high x 1.5" wide
$300


King Manilla Currency 25
10.25" long x 6.5" high x 1.5" wide
$300

King Manilla Currency 26
10.75" long x 7.25" high x 1.75" wide
$300


King Manilla Currency 27
10" long x 6.25" high x 1.75" wide
$300

King Manilla Currency 28
11" long x 7" high x 1.5" wide
$300


King Manilla Currency 29
10" long x 6.5" high x 1.5" wide
$300

King Manilla Currency 30
10.75" long x 7" high x 1.75" wide
$300


King Manilla Currency 31
11.25" long x 7" high x 1.75" wide
$300

Queen Manilla Currency
7"-8" long
$200 each


Photographs © Hamill Gallery

KING MANILLA, "BRACELET" CURRENCY, West Africa

The most common form of metal currency in West Africa was the manilla, a rod with flared ends and bent into a "bracelet" form. Usually made from a copper alloy, forms like these were recognized and used as currency for transactions from the end of the 15th to the mid-20th century. The smaller ones were manufactured in England or France and were used for trade with Africa, including the slave trade. Larger queen and king manillas (like these) were more likely to have been forged in Africa, hammered out locally from bar money. The metal content varies from copper to brass, but many were mixed with lead and even iron. There are in addition variations in size, form and quality. The Africans valued them by their ring when struck.

The king manillas have four facets, queen manillas have eight.

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