Weight - ROM2014_14146_5

ROM2014_14146_5

Weight

Medium:Pink granite, carved and smoothed
Geography: Possibly excavated at Naukratis, Egypt
Date: c. 1400-1200 BC
Period: Late 18th to early 19th Dynasty, New Kingdom
Dimensions:
10.8 × 13.3 cm, 2760 g
Object number: 909.80.374
Not on view
Description

Currency in the form of coins was introduced into Egypt during the Late Period, but for most of Ancient Egyptian history a barter-exchange system based on the value of various weights of copper was used.  Goods were valued in terms of how much copper would be required to buy them, and then exchanged for other goods with the same value in copper.  For example, an Ostracon from Deir el Medina, #73, verso, described by Jac Jansen in Commodity Prices from the Ramesside Period (Leiden, 1975) gives an example of a coffin worth 25.5 deben, which was purchased for two goats, one pig, two sycamore logs, and 13.5 deben of actual copper.  There are many such exhanges recorded from Ancient Egypt.  Weights of silver and units of grain and oils were also used in exchange-barter.  As in modern economies, the rate of exchange between, say, silver and copper, varied with supply. 

This particular weight may have seen hard times as there is considerable wear on the top, almost as if someone had tried to lighten it.

Collection:
Egypt
Bibliography:
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