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Kuang Hsu T'ung Pao

( 1875AD ~1909AD )

To me, UNKNOWN, but to you?

I have placed below an e-mails from Mr. Thomas Chow of Hong Kong, by which it is self-explained.

I refered the coin to my friend in Shanghai, who forwarded to his teacher, 孫仲匯先生 Mr. Sun Zhong Hui. The following is the comment:

Mr. Sun had mentioned the similiar coin in his book: "The Appreciation of Coins", ISBN7 - 80530 - 081 - X / J.084 published by the Shanghai Pictorial Publishing Company.
The phote was shown on photo no. 307, page 142; description on page 140:

歷年所見以光緒寶津背上錕字最為奇特, 此錢外緣被修磨成八角形, 錕為劍名, 又指赤金, 在此不知何意.

The most special coin is the Kuang Hsu Tang Pao with reverse inscription Kun. The rim of this coin had been filed into octagonal shape. Kun is the name of a sword, and also means rose-coloured gold; but the author could not explain what does Kun mean there."

Unfortunately, when Mr. Sun saw the print out of your coin, he said the coin is most probably a counterfeit one, but no further detail to support his argument.

Best Regards,

Thomas Chow

This is another email received on 19 Apr 2000, from Mr. Kentarou Ono of Japan.
Mr. Kentarou Ono has a very rich collection of Chinese Ch'ing cash. He also maintains some Web sites: such as Philatelist (English) and Numismatist (Japanese).

My friend of Ching cash collector says, "This coin is a counterfeit."
"The face characters are different from Kuang Hsu coins."
"Few years ago, the same back characters coins were sold at Chine."

I am collecting some more informations.


Thanks indeed to Mr. Sun Zhong Hui, Mr. Thomas Chow and Mr. Kentarou Ono for their valuable information about this Kuang Hsu T'ugn Pao. I agree with Mr. Sun's comment. I find that the mint mark (Pao Ching) in Manchu script of this copper cash is completely different from the normal Pao Ching copper cash.
This copper cash looks like those Kuang Hsu cash cast in Yunnan or cash of Ming Dynasty Pretenders. It looks like the "One Thousand Characters" series too 千字文系列. We can find the lines of woody pattern on the surface of this cash. This cash looks old, and the mint mark "Kun" is not so common. It is just a century from now to Kuanghsu period, most of the numismatic references are still in existfence. Moreover, Kuang Hsu Tung Pao is not rare coin. I hardly understand that if this cash is a fake.

  1. 關於單一「錕」字的意思,我找不到,卻找到了「錕鋙」。

  2. 「昆吾」古國名,夏伯,昆吾封地,後為成湯所滅。

  3. 詩商頌表發「昆吾夏桀」:傳「有昆吾國」

  4. 陳奐傳疏:「昆吾國即衛帝丘,今直隸大名府開州州治是其地」

  5. 文選揚雄羽獵賦:「武帝廣開上林,東南至宜春鼎湖御宿昆吾」

  6. 古為昆戎所居,夏日昆吾,漢日伊吾盧,在今新彊省哈密縣。
  7. 新辭海:629頁

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

No. 133
20 mm
Wt. 1.9 g.
Rareness C
Mint Evolution & Peculiarity
I have tried most of the big libraries in Hong Kong, but I don't find any minting reference about this copper cash. It denotes from the inscriptions it was cast in Pao-Ching Mint [Peiyang Arsenal Mint in Tientsin of Hopei Province] during Kuang Hsu reign of the Qing Dynasty. The Chinese character "Kun" appears above the hole on the reverse. This is an unknown cash to me, but to you?

More about Qing Cash Coins

More about Kuang Hsu T'ung Pao Cash Coins

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Any additional comment would be much appreciated, you can send it to Y K Leung.