Oceania, Micronesia, Yap Islands, ca. 19th century CE. An enormous, wheel-shaped stone disc known as a "rai" (also raay or fei) with a wide central hole. The chalky-white stone has an asymmetrical body with rough faces, and evidence of the original carving striations is still visible on both faces as well as the peripheries. Rai stones were used as exchangeable currency by Yapese peoples, though no movement of the stones was ever required. The value of an individual rai stone is based both on the overall craftsmanship as well as the oral history of ownership, and ownership of each stone was exchanged for goods and services through either a verbal or written agreement. Size: 25.25" W x 24" H (64.1 cm x 61 cm); 25.625" H (65.1 cm) on included custom stand.
For a stylistically-similar example of a rai stone, please see The British Museum, museum number Oc1980,Q.928: https://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?assetId=1125785001&objectId=489877&partId=1
Provenance: private Hawaii, USA collection
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Minor chips and abrasions to both faces and areas of periphery, with light encrustations, otherwise intact and very good. Nice earthen deposits throughout.