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The bit about the one at the bottom of the Pacific calls to mind the "coppers" of several northwest coast indians. Their value increased with their piecemeal destruction. (I would cut off a piece of my copper and give it to you, publicly of course. That elevates me and puts you in debt.) Their are numerous tales about the ultimate conspicuous destruction: publicly throwing your copper off a canoe into deep water. Its inaccessibility made it in effect priceless.

All part of their complex ritual economies, which included the potlatches, where wealth and the social status it conferred was increased by giving it away.

Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other. -- Dr Johnson

by melvin (melvingladys at or near yahoo.com) on Fri Jun 26th, 2015 at 01:07:21 PM EST

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