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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Asian Coins| ▸ |China||View Options:  |  |  |   

Coins of China

The earliest Chinese proto-coins, as early as 770 - 476 B.C., were imitations of the cowrie shells used in ceremonial exchanges. The first metal coins, also introduced in this period, were not initially round; instead, they were knife shaped or spade shaped. Round metal coins with a round hole, and then later a square hole, in the center were first introduced around 350 B.C. The beginning of the Qin Dynasty (221 - 206 B.C.), the first dynasty to unify China, standardized coinage for the whole Empire. At first, coinage was limited to use around the capital city district but by the beginning of the Han Dynasty, coins were widely used for paying taxes, salaries, and fines. Ancient Chinese coins are markedly different from coins produced in the west. Chinese coins were cast in molds, unlike western coins which were typically struck (hammered) or, in later times, milled. Chinese coins were usually made from bronze, brass, or iron. Precious metals like gold and silver were uncommonly used. The alloys of the coin metals varied considerably. Most Chinese coins were produced with a square hole in the middle. At the mint coins were threaded on a square rod so that the rough edges could be filed smooth on a lathe, after which they were threaded on strings for ease of handling. Official coin production was sometimes spread over many mint locations throughout the country. Aside from officially produced coins, private coining was common during many stages of Chinese history. At times private coining was tolerated, sometimes it was illegal. Some coins were produced in very large numbers. During the Western Han, an average of 220 million coins a year were produced. Some other types were of limited circulation and are extremely rare today.

China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Ren Zong, 1022 - 1063 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Ren| |Zong,| |1022| |-| |1063| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Renzong was the fourth emperor of the Song dynasty. He reigned for about 41 years and was the longest reigning Song dynasty emperor. Despite his long reign, Renzong is not widely known. His reign marked the high point of Song influences and powers but was also the beginning of its slow disintegration that would persist over the next century and a half.
CH92251. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 13.a.02, Hartill 16.93, Schjoth 497, Fisher 904, aVF, deposits and encrustations, weight 2.625 g, maximum diameter 24.2 mm, die axis 0o, 1039 - 1054 A.D.; obverse Huang Song tong bao, seal script, tall tong; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $10.00 SALE PRICE $9.00


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Ren Zong, 1022 - 1063 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Ren| |Zong,| |1022| |-| |1063| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Despite his long reign of over 40 years, Renzong is not widely known. His reign marked the high point of Song influences and powers but was also the beginning of its slow disintegration that would persist over the next century and a half.
CH92252. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 13.a.25, Hartill 16.93, Schjoth 497, Fisher 904, F, light deposits and encrustations, weight 2.488 g, maximum diameter 24.2 mm, die axis 0o, 1039 - 1054 A.D.; obverse Huang Song tong bao, seal script, smaller coin; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $10.00 SALE PRICE $9.00


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Ren Zong, 1022 - 1063 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Ren| |Zong,| |1022| |-| |1063| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Despite his long reign of over 40 years, Renzong is not widely known. His reign marked the high point of Song influences and powers but was also the beginning of its slow disintegration that would persist over the next century and a half.
CH92253. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 13.a, Hartill 16.98, Schjoth 496, F, deposits and encrustations, weight 2.976 g, maximum diameter 23.5 mm, die axis 0o, 1039 - 1054 A.D.; obverse Huang Song tong bao, seal script, dot in Huang; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $10.00 SALE PRICE $9.00


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Shen Zong, 1067 - 1085 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Shen| |Zong,| |1067| |-| |1085| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Shenzong implemented Wang Anshi's famous reforms aimed at improving life for the peasantry and unemployed. He was initially successful against the Tangut Empire but Shenzong's forces were defeated at the City of Yongle battle of 1082. As a result, the Xixia forces grew more powerful and would be a thorn on the side of the Song dynasty in the ensuing decades.
CH92282. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 27.a, Hartill 16.210, Schjoth 545, Fisher 964, F, deposits and encrustations, weight 4.657 g, maximum diameter 24.5 mm, die axis 0o, 1078 - 1085 A.D.; obverse Yuan Feng tong bao, seal script, clockwise; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $10.00 SALE PRICE $9.00


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Shen Zong, 1067 - 1085 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Shen| |Zong,| |1067| |-| |1085| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Shenzong implemented Wang Anshi's famous reforms aimed at improving life for the peasantry and unemployed. He was initially successful against the Tangut Empire but Shenzong's forces were defeated at the City of Yongle battle of 1082. As a result, the Xixia forces grew more powerful and would be a thorn on the side of the Song dynasty in the ensuing decades.
CH98272. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 27.b, Hartill 16.236, Schjoth 547, Fisher 963, gF, weight 3.531 g, maximum diameter 24.7 mm, die axis 0o, 1078 - 1085 A.D.; obverse Yuan Feng tong bao, running script, clockwise; reverse plain; $10.00 SALE PRICE $9.00


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Ren Zong, 1022 - 1063 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Ren| |Zong,| |1022| |-| |1063| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Renzong was the fourth emperor of the Song dynasty in China. He reigned for about 41 years from 1022 to his death in 1063, and was the longest reigning Song dynasty emperor. Despite his long reign of over 40 years, Renzong is not widely known. His reign marked the high point of Song influences and powers but was also the beginning of its slow disintegration that would persist over the next century and a half.
CH92249. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 13.b.26, Hartill 16.105, Schjoth 499, F, deposits and encrustations, weight 2.942 g, maximum diameter 24.4 mm, die axis 0o, 1039 - 1054 A.D.; obverse Huang Song tong bao, tong in li script, other characters in regular script, small hole; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $9.00 SALE PRICE $8.10


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Shen Zong, 1067 - 1085 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Shen| |Zong,| |1067| |-| |1085| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Shenzong implemented Wang Anshi's famous reforms aimed at improving life for the peasantry and unemployed. He was initially successful against the Tangut Empire but Shenzong's forces were defeated at the City of Yongle battle of 1082. As a result, the Xixia forces grew more powerful and would be a thorn on the side of the Song dynasty in the ensuing decades.
CH92271. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 24.a, Hartill 16.175, Schjoth 530, Fisher 945, F, deposits and encrustations, weight 4.483 g, maximum diameter 23.8 mm, die axis 0o, 1068 - 1077 A.D.; obverse Xi Ning yuan bao, seal script, clockwise; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $9.00 SALE PRICE $8.10


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Zhe Zong, 1086 - 1100 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Zhe| |Zong,| |1086| |-| |1100| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Zhezong ascended the throne at age 9 under the supervision of Empress Dowager Gao. He was powerless until the Empress' death in 1093. Under Zhenzong the country prospered. But after the Khitan attacked, despite initial successes, he concluded a treaty agreeing to an inferior position and an annual tribute of 100,000 oz. of silver and over 200,000 bolts of silk. The treaty brought over a century of peace, but the admission of inferiority would plague foreign affairs and the payments slowly depleted the empire's coffers. Zhezong died in 1100 in Kaifeng and was succeeded by his younger brother. He was only 24.
CH92294. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 29.a, Hartill 16.292, Schjoth 585, Fisher 990, gF, casting void from inside hole, weight 3.318 g, maximum diameter 24.6 mm, die axis 0o, 1094 - 1097 A.D.; obverse Shao Sheng yuan bao, seal script, clockwise, round bao; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $9.00 SALE PRICE $8.10


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Ren Zong, 1022 - 1063 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Ren| |Zong,| |1022| |-| |1063| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Renzong was the fourth emperor of the Song dynasty. He reigned for about 41 years and was the longest reigning Song dynasty emperor. Despite his long reign, Renzong is not widely known. His reign marked the high point of Song influences and powers but was also the beginning of its slow disintegration that would persist over the next century and a half.
CH92238. Bronze 1 cash, Hartill 16.73, Schjoth 484, Fisher 896, aF, as found deposits and encrustations, weight 4.006 g, maximum diameter 24.9 mm, 1023 - 1031 A.D.; obverse Tian Sheng yuan bao, seal script, clockwise, wide inner rim; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $8.00 SALE PRICE $7.20


China, Northern Song Dynasty, Emperor Ren Zong, 1022 - 1063 A.D.

|China|, |China,| |Northern| |Song| |Dynasty,| |Emperor| |Ren| |Zong,| |1022| |-| |1063| |A.D.||1| |cash|
Renzong was the fourth emperor of the Song dynasty. He reigned for about 41 years and was the longest reigning Song dynasty emperor. Despite his long reign, Renzong is not widely known. His reign marked the high point of Song influences and powers but was also the beginning of its slow disintegration that would persist over the next century and a half.
CH92242. Bronze 1 cash, Gorny NS 12.b.06, Hartill 16.89, Schjoth 494, Fisher 901, aF, as found dark patina, light deposits and encrustations, weight 3.832 g, maximum diameter 24.5 mm, 1034 - 1038 A.D.; obverse Jing You yuan bao, regular script, clockwise; reverse plain; from a collection of 90 different Chinese cash coin types (no duplicates) all selected from a single hoard found on Java; $8.00 SALE PRICE $7.20




  



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REFERENCES|

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