This is a type of metal money called "bar currency," from the Matakam culture in Cameroon. Early currency was typically made of a metal, like gold, silver, or copper. Different areas had different styles of currency that reflected the community’s culture. This remains true in the modern world, with different countries having different forms of currency that reflect their culture, such as the US dollar’s depiction of American symbols and figures. Some styles of currency also were considered more valuable based on their design. For example, this bar currency was considered more valuable because the spirals on either side of the bar required a skilled metalsmith.