Tuesday, 11 March 2008 10:37 AM

Traditional Currency Revived

The long coil of Red Feather Money is a valuable and unique traditional artifact from the Santa Cruz Islands in Temotu Province.

Made from the scarlet feathers of honey eater birds, together with pigeon feathers, the feathers are bound in platelets to form the basis and the outer visible coverings of the Red Feather money.

Speaking to Solomon Times, Ms. Patricia George said that the Red Feather money was used for trade between Reef Islands and the Taumako Islands in the past, usually in exchange for women, laborers, and canoes.

The Red Feather money is also used as a means for accumulating wealth. This is often achieved since the Red Feather money is used to purchase pigs, a sign of wealth and prestige. A normal Red Feather bride price stands at 10 Red Feather coils.

Recently, a lot of Temotu people have again started practicing the making of the Red Feather money, which had experienced a decline of skill in the past decade.

As a result, this artifact could be sustained and more people will be able to pass down the skill to create and sustain this valuable traditional currency for generations to come.

Letters to the Editor All Letters
By STEVE BANI Vura Heights, East Honiara
By GEOFFREY MAURIASI USP, Lacuala Campus, Fiji
By CHARLES KOULI Gizo, Western Province