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Hunan Provincial Constitution

The Transitional Coinage

Marks of Rareness of the Collected Currencies
Extremely Rare A ~ Very Rare B ~ Rare C ~ Not So Many D ~ Common E

During the later Qing dynasty, the coinage of the ancient copper coins had been suspended in most of the provinces in China. The Mint masters found that they could not cast the tranditional cash coins economically, they stopped casting and engaged in another kind of circular coin struck by machinery without a square hole in the centre. It was called "T'ung Yuan" [copper coin], or "T'ung Hsien" [copper cent] and or "Tung Pan" [copper plate] Each one is equivalent to ten cash. Later, there were also denominations of 1, 2, 5, 20, and 30 cash. Copper coin was first minted in Kwangtung province in the 26th years of the "Kwang Hsu" reign (1900AD).

Description Obverse Mint Evolution & Peculiarity
No. 0025 This coin was minted by Chao Heng Ti, governer of Hunan province, in commemorating the promulgation of the provincial constitution on 1st Jan 1922. On the obverse side of this coin is a design of good harvest with three horizontal bars [The "Ch'ien" hexagram (the symbol of heaven) in "I Ching or Book of Changes", the earliest philosephical work extant in China. The "Ch'ien" hexagram is a sign of good omen.] in the center encompassed by a beaded circle. In the outer circle, the above Chinese characters means the Hunan Provincial Constitution was promulgated and the below characters means on 1st Jan of the 11th year of the Republic of China. The denomination right and left of this coin is 20 cash. Besides the copper coin, there were also siver and gold coin existed, denomination of one-dollar. On the reverse side of this coin with the official design of iron-and-blood 18-star flag and the five-colour flag crossed within beaded circle in center. Above it is sunflower. [Some of the same kind coin bearing star abone flags].
Mint: Hunan
Wt. 11.4 g. Reverse
32.5 mm
Rareness D

No. 0026 Hunan Copper Coin Bureau was first established in 1902, and was suspended in 1925. The Inscriptions on the obverse are Chinese characters right and left "Tang Shih" means equivalent to ten cash.
Mint: Hunan
29 mm
Wt. 6.7 g.
Rareness D

Chao Heng Ti was born on 11th Jan 1880 in Hunan Province. He graduated in the Hupeh provincial dialect school. Later, he went to Japan, and studied in a military school in Tokyo and the 6th artillery department of a naval school. He joined the Zhongguo Tong Meng Hui [Chinese Revolutionary League], formed by the Chinese revolutionaries in 1905 and Mr. Sun Yat Sen was the president. He came back to China in 1909, Chao became an officer of the Kwangsi army as he followed Mr. Ts'ai Ng'e . In 1912, Chao was arrested by Yuan Shih Kai in Peking. Later by the help of Mr. Ts'ai Ng'e, he was baled out. In 1916, he was appointed as the commander of the first division of the Hunan army and later became its acting commander-in-chief. In the later of 1920, he was appointed by the Kwangtung Military Government as the commander-in-chief of Hunan. he set up a preparatory office for drafting the constitution and advocated joint autonomy of the provinces . The following year he took the office of governor of Hunan. In 1949, Chao went to Hong Kong and later went to Taiwan. He passed away in Taipei on 23rd Nov 1971.

More about Copper Coin II
The Hung Shuan Memento Copper Coin of Hunan Province

Where is the Mint Mark
of the 10 Cash TAI-CHING-TI-KUO copper coin ?

More about Copper Coin in Chinese History


  1. 中國大百科全書(中國歷史), 中國大百科全書出版社 1994, ISBN 7-5000-5469-6.
  2. 中國歷代幣貨 A History of Chinese Currency (16th Century BC - 20th Century AD), 1983 Jointly Published by Xinhua (New China) Publishing House N.C.N. Limited M.A.O. Management Group Ltd. ISBN 962 7094 01 3
  3. Dong Wenchao : 中國歷代金銀幣貨通覽 (An Overview of China's Gold & Silver Coins of Past Ages - The gold and silver coins and medals of modern China. p.850 ISBN 962-531-001-0)

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