Oriental tourist pieces - or anything better?

Discussion in 'World Coins' started by PaddyB, Apr 25, 2019.

  1. PaddyB

    PaddyB Eccentric enthusiast

    A friend has asked me to find out more about these. I said I thought they are just tourist pieces but I thought I had better get confirmation as not really my area!
    First one is about 50mm diameter, second about 70mm long - so both quite large. They appear to be cast brass. A translation of what they say would prove I had done the research... Thanks!
    China Unid 1-horz.jpg Japan Unid 1-horz.jpg
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  3. Seattlite86

    Seattlite86 Outspoken Member

  4. gxseries

    gxseries Coin Collector

    They look very modern. I would not touch it as there may be traces of heavy metal.
  5. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    Agree with them being modern replicas/fakes/whatever you want to call them.
  6. Parthicus

    Parthicus Well-Known Member

    Agree that both are not original coins. Top one has an unusual obverse of Qianlong (1736-95) with "yuan bao" (first or original coin) rather than the usual "tong bao" (current coin), reverse indicates a large multiple cash of the sort issued by Xianfeng (1851-1861) during the economic crisis of the Taiping Rebellion. I don't see anything like it in Hartill (unless it's just too early in the morning :dead: ) so, fake.

    Bottom one doesn't look much like any real coin. There were a few circulating oval pieces made in Japan in the 19th century, but they didn't look like this.
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  7. TypeCoin971793

    TypeCoin971793 Just a random nobody...

    They are both completely the wrong style, so I will go with modern fanstasy coins. I don’t recall ever seeing a QianLong 10 cash. It has the form of a Xian Feng 10 cash from a century later
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  8. Ken Dorney

    Ken Dorney Yea, I'm Cool That Way...

    Not real, but not fake either. These are charms. The tradition of using charms in China goes back (according to some books) over 2,000 years, and they are still produced and used there today. These are not old, but new examples, worth a few dollars each.
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  9. mrbreeze

    mrbreeze Well-Known Member

    As I have said before and as Ken has said, calling cash coins "real," "fake" or "fantasy" is not an absolute. When you are dealing with cast chinese coins, the terms real and fake can't be used without defining your parameters for such a label. I usually classify these coins a few ways. My very loose classifications would be:

    1. Coins intended for commerce made by the existing authority to mint such coins
    2. Coins made by other entities or even authorities at the time to replicate current coins - palace coins, one-offs, poem coins, etc.
    3. Coins made as charms that may or may not match existing coins of the time
    4. Modern charms, fantasies, etc
    5. Coins made intentionally to deceive consumers of the time or collectors of this time

    I would classify these coins as #4 from the pictures provided. With all cast coins, an "in hand" evaluation is always your best bet.

    Edited to add a little clarification...A coin made as a charm is a "real" coin. A coin made for a monetary profit in the last 100 or so years trying to duplicate a coin from antiquity and intended to pass as a coin from the prior eras is "fake."
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2019
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  10. Ken Dorney

    Ken Dorney Yea, I'm Cool That Way...

    Not to confuse the issue, but add to the list above:

    Private mint issues which are sometimes under authority and sometimes not.
    Burial coins.
    Gaming tokens.

    Any of which can be as much as 2,000 years old (but the OP coins are not). I suspect charms are not as popular in China as they once were, so I imagine they are now produced with the collectibles market in mind.

    Anyway, the second oblong charm is a known type. It is cataloged in Sequel of Classic Chinese Charms, #1935 (in the Japanese section). Of particular note is what they say there: "Tian Bao Di Bao charm, bronze, probably made around Taisho period. P.S.: The late brass edition is $25. There are many recent fakes of this type."
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  11. PaddyB

    PaddyB Eccentric enthusiast

    Thank you all for your assistance! So in summary, both coins are modern "Charm or fantasy" coins. The first is based on a mash up of Chinese coin designs spanning 2 centuries. The second is a loose copy of a Japanese charm from the Taisho period. Their worth, if any, is as a trinket or souvenir rather than as a coin.
    Thanks again,
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