Meaning of shell money in English:

shell money


mass nounmainly historical
  • Shells used as a medium of exchange, especially wampum.

    ‘The new mother, 18-year-old Fazila, is given a necklace of traditional stone and turtle shell money.’
    • ‘The value of the shell money is based on the goods it traded for yesterday - since we can't know what prices will be today.’
    • ‘A second type of shell money is a better made and finely polished mollusc, spondylous or mussel shell strand.’
    • ‘The traditional Tolai currency or shell money called Tabu is set to become legal tender in East New Britain Province.’
    • ‘Women own shell money and participate in exchange but they rarely sponsor payments.’