In 1740 2,400 Cowries were equal to 1 Rupee. Cowries are valued in West Africa, but specifically Guinea, as much as silver and Gold. There they are called “bougies”. Cowries are worn as ornaments in necklaces and bracelets. Cowries are described as white. French merchants in Whydah paid 40 pounds for every piece of common linen and proportionally for wax, ivory, and gold.
12,000 Cowries could in the past be used to buy 500 – 600 Negroes. The price was raised to 12 – 15 tons of Cowries. Cowries were weighed in a copper vessel that held exactly 108 pounds. They are found in the Philippines, but are not the same color or clearness. The chief European marketplace for Cowries is in Amsterdam. French and English merchants buy them to send to Africa.