"When HMS Dolphin's sailors found that a twenty-penny iron nail could buy sexual encounter on Tahiti in 1767, neither sailors nor Tahitian men could believe their luck; whether the Tahitian women were as happy as their menfolk about this bargain goes unrecorded. Twelve days later, rampant inflation had set in and sex now cost a nine-inch marlinspike."*
Matt Ridley, The Rational Optimist. How Prosperity Evolves, Fourth Estate, London, 2010.Het prentje: Captain Samuel Wallis Being Received by Queen Oberea on the Island of Tahiti.
*: Wikipedia geeft interessante aanvullende informatie: "This trade became so extensive that the loss of nails started to threaten Dolphin's physical integrity."