Residents of this island pay in stones!
Though this is unbelievable reports say this is true that there is an island in the Pacific Ocean where the residents use giant disks of limestone as currency for trade.
As per reports, the island of Yap, an independent sovereign island nation of Micronesia is home to about 12,000 people. The island does not have any precious materials like gold or diamond. However, they use giant disks of limestone called Rai as currency for trade.
These stones are said to be large circular disks with a hole in the centre. The big stones are as high as 12 feet and weigh as much as 5 tonnes each. Some of these stones are immovable due to their huge weight. However, they are owned.
Reports say the physical location of the stone is not important, but the ownership is.
As per a report, once a huge Rai was being transported in the waterways in the sea and it dropped and sank to the sea floor. Although it could not be traced out, everyone agreed that the Rai must still be there. And hence it was transacted as genuine currency.
If moving a stone is very much necessary a strong pole is passed through the hole and carried by men to the required destination.
Such stones are not always big, but even there are such stones that measures as low as 7-8cm in diameter.
Such stones are not home to Yap. As per reports, the limestone was originally carved from quarries in the island of Palau, that is about 400km away.
The value of a certain stone depends on its size and craftsmanship. The larger the stone, the higher is its value.
These days though modern currency has mostly replaced the stones, still Rai stones are exchanged in the traditional ways like during marriage, inheritance etc.
Have you heard of Rai stones?
People on the island of Yap would quarry massive “coins” out of limestone and use them as money. “Making money” took a lot of energy. People announced all spending publicly, so everyone always knew who owned each stone.
That’s Bitcoin. pic.twitter.com/czJnEAdJis
— Alan Hibbard (@AlanHibbard) January 21, 2023