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CHINESE COINS & CURRENCY

All items guaranteed to be genuine.  I have over 30 years experience with Chinese coins and buy only from reliable suppliers in the United States.

ANCIENT CHINESE KNIFE COIN Restocked

China Ming type knife Coin
Knives were a common barter item in ancient China, but a bit hazardous to carry around to trade. Some of China's first coins were made to look like a knife, so that people would think of them as money, but they lacked a sharp blade. A hole was included for easy stringing. This knife coin is called the "Ming" after the city where it was made (not the dynasty that was much later). It dates from about 400BC to 225BC.   It is made of bronze and is about 5 inches (13cm.) long.
Item CN-KNIFE CHINA, MING TYPE KNIFE COIN, Circa 400BC - 225BC Fine-VF $60.00



FAMOUS K'AI YUAN COIN OF THE TANG DYNASTY 

China 1 Cash K'ai Yuan coin of Tang DynastyThe K'ai Yuan coin was introduced by Chinese Emperor Kao Tsu, who founded the Tang Dyansty in 618AD.  The coins replaced the previously used Wu-Chu and other coins.  The high quality of the coins and excellent calligraphy set a standard for Chinese coins for the next 1000 years!   The legend on the coin, K'ai Yuan Tung Pao translates as "precious currency of the K'ai Yuan era".   The Tang Dynasty was a brilliant period in Chinese history.  It was an era of great prosperity and artistry.   The K'ai Yuan coin continued to be issued for the next 300 years, until the collapse of the Dynasty in 907AD.   During much of the dynasty the coin was the only denomination struck.  Because of the relatively low value of the coin and the high level of commerce a LOT of the coins were issued during that period. (Think of doing all your transactions with only pennies!)   As a result the coin, though over 1000 years old, is still plentiful and inexpensive.
Item CN-KAI CHINA K'AI YUAN 1 CASH COIN, (Scj. 312+) 618-907AD F-VF out




A WORD ABOUT THE NAMES OF CHINESE EMPERORS

 The names of Chinese emperors can be confusing - because one Emperor will have many names.  Like everyone, they have personal name, but that is often different than their birth name.  Once they become emperor however,  the emperor choses a reign title.  The reign title is the name that appears on their coins.  Some emperors used one reign title for their entire reign.  Others would change their reign title every few years. Some reign title would be used by more than one emperor.  In addition, after an emperor died he was given a posthumous name, which often was long enough to read like an entire sentence. 

Adding the confusion is that there are multiple ways of translating the same name.  Most traditional English language references used the Wade-Giles transcription.  Many recent books use the modern Pinyin transcription.  Thus the emperor who ruled China from 1022 to 1063AD is known as Jen Tsung in the Wade-Giles transcription and Ren Zong in the Pinyin transcription. He used nine reign titles during his reign.   His reign titles in the Wade-Giles transcription are T'ien-Sheng, Ming-tao, Ching-yu, Pao-yuan, K'ang-ting, Ch'ing-li, Huang-yu, Chih-ho, and Chia-yu.  In the Pinyin transcription that is Tian Sheng, Ming Dao, Jing You, Huang Song, Kang Ding, Huang You, Zhi He and Jia You.  His birth name (using Pinyin) was Zhao Zhen.  His Posthumous name (using Pinyin) is Emperor Titian Fadao Jigong Quande Shenwen Shengwu Ruizhe Mingxiao, but that is too long for anyone to use!

 For the purposes of these coins, I will usually refer to both the reign title that appears on the coin (as that is what is used by most collectors of Chinese coins), and the common personal name that the emperor is known by in the history books.  I will usually include both the Wade-Giles and Pinyin transcription.



BEAUTIFUL 5 CASH COIN OF  THE NORTHERN SONG DYNASTY

Chuna 5 Cash, Ch'ung Ning (Chong Ning) 1102-1106AD , Scj. 522The Northern (Pei) Song (Sung) Dynasty came to power in 960AD.  China prospered under its wise Emperors and a competent and honest civil service. In 1101 Emperor Hui  Zong (Hui Tsung) came to power.  A cultured man, poet, painter and avid patron of the arts, he spent vast sums collecting art, supporting artists, and building a costly imperial garden.   He neglected the affairs of state.  The civil service became increasingly corrupt, the army weak, and the treasury bankrupt. The Emperor allied himself with the increasingly powerful Jin (Chin Tarters) of Manchuria. The Jin (Chin), then turned against him and succeeded in sacking and destroying the weakened Song Dynasty.  Hui Zong was captured, along with most of the Imperial Court, and died in exile in Manchuria.
    In 1102 Hui Zong began to issue this attractive, large (34mm) copper 5 Cash coin.  The coin had far less copper than five one cash coins, so brought in extra revenue for the government and disdain from its citizens  In keeping with the Emperor’s appreciation for calligraphy, the coins show his reign title Chong Ning (Ch'ung Ning) in a script he created “Slender Gold Style”.  The reverse is blank. In keeping with Gresham's Law, this devalued money drove the good money out of circulation which caused a severe coin shortage.  The public outcry caused the Emperor to discontinue the coins by 1106AD.  It is an attractive coin from a cultured, but inept, Emperor.
Item CN-S622 NORTHERN SONG 5 CASH COIN, CHONG NING 1102-1106AD Scj. 622 F-VF $18.00


INEXPENSIVE 200 YEAR OLD MANCHU DYNASTY COIN

China 1 Cash coin of Qianlong Emperor (1735-1796)Ch'ien Lung (Qianlong Emperor) was the fourth emperor of the Ch'ing (Manchu) Dynasty, and one of the longest reigning emperors in the thousands of years of Chinese history.  His reign lasted from 1735 until 1796.  His military campaigns strengthened Chinese authority both within the Empire and over its neighbors.  He created a new province, Sinkiang Province, in north-western China, substantially increasing the size of the Empire. He had 17 sons and 10 daughters by his concubines.  He was also a patron of the arts.  He resigned in 1796, turning the Empire over to his fifth son and died in 1799.  This brass 1 cash coin of Ch'ien Lung features the Emperors title on one side and the mint mark on the reverse. The coins are genuine, and despite being over 200 years old, they are quite inexpensive. Many hundreds of millions of coins were made during his long and prosperous reign.  The coin has long been popular with practitioners of Feng Shui and I Ching.
Item CN-CL CHINA CH'IEN LUNG 1 CASH 1735-1796 Fine $2.00
Item CN-CLx3 3 COINS OF CHINA CH'IEN LUNG 1 CASH  (useful for I Ching) Fine $5.00



Book: Old Coins of China by Holger Jorgensen. Chinese cash coin identification guideOLD COINS OF CHINA by Holger Jorgensen

A small but complete identification guide book for Chinese cash coins from 600BC to 1912AD. Best book if you just want to identify Chinese cash coins by emperor and date without going into varieties. Features line drawings of coins.   Reprint. 26 pages and plates. 5.5" x 8.5",  softcover.
Item BK-Jorgensen Book: OLD COINS OF CHINA by Holger Jorgensen $6.00


NEWSCARCE CHINESE BAMBOO MONEY

Chinese Bamboo Money, 200 Wen (cash) 1895 Chinese Bamboo Money, 200 Wen (cash) 1928Chinese Bamboo Money, 1000 Wen (cash) 1928
These unusual pieces of bamboo money were issued by the Guang Shan Private Bank, in Suzhou China. We have three different types available.  200 Wen dated 1895 in the Chinese cyclical calendar, and 200 and 1000 Wen dated 1928 in the Chinese cyclical calendar.  One side has the value impressed into the bamboo.  The other side has the serial number and the name of the bank.  Each piece bears a unique serial number and is made with a hole to make it easy to carry on string.  To make sure someone could find the bank, complete directions (inside the Chang gate, east of the Li Sui Shi bridge, Sha Tang Blvd) are given along the edge of the 1928 issues (in Chinese, of course). The 200 Wen pieces are about 90.5x12mm, the 1000 Wen is about 129 x 15mm. These pieces were discovered about 20 years ago, hidden inside a wall of a building that was being demolished in Suzhou, and are guaranteed genuine.
Item CN-95BAMB200 CHINA 200 WEN BAMBOO MONEY, 1895 VF-XF $24.00
Item CN-28BAMB200 CHINA 200 WEN BAMBOO MONEY, 1928 XF-AU $12.00
Item CN-285BAMB1000 CHINA 1000 WEN BAMBOO MONEY, 1928 VF-XF $30.00
Item CN-BAMBSET ABOVE 3 CHINESE BAMBOO MONEY $49.75

Click HereClick Here for translation sheet for the Chinese Bamboo Money


CHINESE MOTHER OF PEARL GAMBLING TOKENS

Chinese Mother of Pearl Gambling tokensThese beautiful, hand carved mother-of-pearl gambling tokens were manufactured in China from the late 18th Century to the late 19th Century.  Most were exported to Europe where they were used in a card games.  They come a variety of shapes and sizes, including round, rectangular, oval and even fish-shaped.  Most are about 28mm to 55mm.  
Item CHINA-MOPx1 1 CHINESE MOTHER OF PEARL GAMBLING TOKEN $15.00
Item CHINA-MOPx3 3 DIFFERENT CHINESE MOTHER OF PEARL GAMBLING TOKENS $39.75


OLD TOKEN FROM SHANGHAI

Tong K Wing, Shangha, China i 5 Jiao tokenTong K. Wing, a merchant in Shanghai, issued this 5 Jiao (50 Cents) token about 1920.  The 32mm aluminum token is believed to have been issued about 1920.  One side has legend “TONG K WING SHANGHAI, CHINA” and the numeral “5”  The other side has a floral pattern.  The coin grades XF for wear but has significant tarnish. 
Item CN-TONG TONG K WING, SHANGHAI CHINA 5 JIAO TOKEN $19.50



NEWRARE RECTANGULAR SHANGHAI MINT TOKENS

Shanghai Mint tokens: 1 Fen, 5 Fen & 1 Jiao, circa mid 1950's - 1960'sThese unusual rectangular tokens were used in the Shanghai mint in the 1950's. To discourage theft, regular coins were not permitted to be used within the mint. One side has the tokens characters "VIV" and the denomination in Chinese.  The other side just has the denomination in Chinese. The undated tokens are struck in aluminum. Chinese government factories were numbered, but this factory wanted to disguise itself. VIV is not the Roman numerals for 515, but it is VI + I + IV  = 614 which is the number of the Shanghai Mint state factory.  The 3 token set includes the 1 Fen, 5 Fen and 1 Jiao. 
Item CN-SHANG-SET3 SHANGHAI MINT 3 TOKEN SET 1 FEN - 1 JIAO VF $20.00
Item CN-SHANG-1FEN SHANGHAI MINT 1 FEN TOKEN FROM THE ABOVE SET VF $6.00


WORLD WAR II CHINESE CURRENCY

Bank of China 10 Yuan banknote 1940, P85Bank of China 100 Yuan banknote with Chungking Overprint 1940, P88c
Reduced size images
In July 1937 Japan began a full scale invasion of China. Japanese forces quickly took Peking (Beijing) and Shanghai.  In December the Japanese conquered the capital city of Nanking, and engaged in a campaign of mass murder and rape.   Rather than surrender, the Chinese retreated and moved their capital to the remote city of Chungking (now Chongqing) in south-west China.  The 1940 red 10 Yuan and purple 100 Yuan notes were issued by the Nationalist Chinese government's Bank of China in Chungking.  Both notes feature Sun Yat Sen, the founding father of the Republic of China on the front.  The back pictures the Temple of Heaven in Beijing.  The notes were printed by the American Banknote Company and are in Chinese on the front, English on the back.  The 100 Yuan note is overprinted "Chungking" in English on the back, and in Chinese on the front.
Item PM-CN-10Y CHINA 10 YUAN NOTE, 1940 P85 F-VF out
Item PM-CN-100Y CHINA 100 YUAN NOTE, 1940 P88c F-VF $7.50


WORLD WAR II JAPANESE MILITARY CURRENCY USED IN CHINA

China-Japanese Military Currency 100 Yen note (1945) PM30
Reduced size images
Japan issued Military Currency for use in Hong Kong and areas of China  that they occupied starting in 1938.  Because civilians were forced to accept the Military Yen, which was not backed and could not be exchanged into Japanese Yen, it cost the Japanese government virtually nothing to purchase whatever they wanted. The initial issues of Military currency were created by taking partially completed Japanese homeland notes and overprinting them on the front and back with four large red characters that read "Military Note". The 100 Yen Japanese Military note was issued in 1945 for use in Hong Kong.  It was the highest denomination military currency issued by Japan. The note, apparently printed in Hong Kong, utilized the basic design of the 1944 Japanese homeland 100 Yen note, however with modified legends on the back and the front has the "Military Currency" overprint.  The 100 Yen note is in Uncirculated condition.
Item PM-CN-M100Y JAPANESE MILITARY CURRENCY FOR HONG KONG 100 YEN 1945 PM30 UNC. $9.00




JAPANESE OCCUPATION OF MANCHUKUO Restocked

Manchukuo 1 Fen of Ta T'ung 1933-34Manchukuo 1 Chaio Ta T'ung 1933-34
In 1931 Japan invaded the three north-eastern provinces of China and set up the nominally independent nation of Manchukuo. A puppet government was set up under P’u-Yi, the former Emperor of China, as “Chief Executive”. He adopted the reign title Ta T’ung. In 1934 the Japanese raised his title to that of Emperor of Manchukuo. A new reign title, K’ang Te, was adopted, though the basic design of the coins remained unchanged. We offer coins issued under both reign titles. The bronze 1 Fen features the flag of Manchukuo on one side and floral sprays on the other. The copper-nickel 1 Chiao (10 Fen) depicts a pair of dragons on one side and a lotus flower on the other. The 1 Fen grades VF, the 1 Chiao grades Fine.
Item MAN-TT-SET2 MANCHUKUO 1 FEN & 1 CHIAO TA T’UNG 1933-34 Y2 & Y4 F-VF out
Item MAN-KT-SET2 MANCHUKUO 1 FEN & 1 CHIAO K'ANG TE 1934-39 Y6 & Y8 F-VF $9.75



UNUSUAL FIBER COIN FROM WWII JAPANESE OCCUPATION OF CHINA  Restocked

Manchukuo 1 Fen 1945 Y13a "red fiber"Manchukuo was a Japanese puppet state carved out of Northeastern China prior to World War II. Due to a severe metal shortage towards the end of the war, it issued this unusual 1 Fen coin struck in a red cardboard-like material rather than metal. The coin is dated in the twelfth year of the reign of Emperor Kang Te of Manchukuo. Kang Te was formerly known as Pu Yi, who was the last Emperor of China until he was deposed in 1911. The Japanese used him as the figurehead leader for Manchukuo. The coin was struck only a single year; 1945. This historic World War II coin is one of the few circulating non-metallic coins of the century.
Item MAN-1F45 MANCHUKUO 1 FEN 1945 Y13a F-VF $10.00



MENG CHIANG JAPANESE PUPPET BANK   Restocked

Meng Chiang Bank 5 Chiao 1938 KM521During the 1930's Japan conquered much of Northern China.  The Meng Chiang Bank was a puppet bank established by the Japanese to provide currency for the area between Mongolia and Manchukuo, known as Inner Mongolia.  In 1938 the Bank issued its only coin: a copper-nickel 5 Chiao. One side of the coin features a pair of stylized dragons and the denomination.   The other side has a floral design.
Item MENG521 MENG CHIANG BANK 5 CHIAO 1938 (KM521) VF-XF $10.00


COIN SET FROM THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA  

People's Republic of China coin set
This unpackaged five coin set from The People's Republic of China includes the 1, 2 and 5 Fen, 1 and 5 Jiao dating from 1987 to 1996. One side of the coins show the national emblem featuring the Tiananmen Gate and the entrance to The Forbidden City. The Forbidden City was the former Imperial Palace that was closed to the public. It is now a vast museum and a major tourist attraction. Above the gate are 5 stars. The reverse of the coins features the denomination. All 5 coins are Uncirculated.
Item CN-SET5 PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA COIN SET $3.00


NEWCHINESE SILVER PANDAS

China 2017 30 gram .999 fine silver PandaChina 2016 30 gram .999 fine silver PandaChina 2015 1 troy ounce .999 fine silver Panda
China continued their acclaimed silver Panda series with this attractive 2016 issue.  Each year features a different design featuring a cute giant Panda.  The 2017 issue depicts a panda holding its favorite food - a bamboo branch.  The obverse features the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, a Taoist temple complex constructed in the early 1400's. Starting in 2016 China went "metric" with the Panda, changing the weight from 1 troy ounce (31.1035 grams) to 30 trams.  All the coins are struck in .999 fine silver, has a nominal value of 10 Yuan. The Brilliant Uncirculated 40mm coin comes in a protective capsule. We also have some previous issues in this popular series.
Item CN-PANDA17 CHINA 10 YUAN 2017 SILVER PANDA, 30 GRAMS BU $30.00
Item CN-PANDA16 CHINA 10 YUAN 2016 SILVER PANDA, 30 GRAMS BU $30.00
Item CN-PANDA15 CHINA 10 YUAN 2015 SILVER PANDA, 1 TROY OUNCE BU $33.00



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All items are guaranteed to be genuine, unless clearly indicated otherwise.
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