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Chinese Copper Coins – Kwangtung Province Part 2 – 1906 to 1909 Coins

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In the last Kwangtung Province copper coin article we covered coinage from 1900 through 1906. This article will examine the “Standard Dragon” copper issues minted between 1906 and 1909. Following a coinage reform in China, the government went to a uniform design for the Empire and Province issues of the copper 10 Cash coinage. This uniform issue would use what is called the “Standard Dragon” design on one side and a mintmarked disk on the Chinese character side. This mintmark would feature a Chinese character to show which province minted the coin. Even with a new standard, the coinage across the Empire varied greatly with significant design differences and a great number of varieties.

The Kwangtung Mintmark Character

The Kwangtung 10 Cash issues from 1906 through 1909 are all dated using the lunar calendar, which is discussed in a previous article. The Krause catalog grouped the coins dated 1906, 1907, and 1908 under one reference, number Y-10r. The Y is for Yeoman, a predecessor to Krause and another authoritative resource for these Chinese coppers and other world coins. When converting over to the new system, many Yeoman numbers were left intact, especially for Chinese coins.

Kwangtung (1906) 10 Cash Y-10r PCGS Number 409267

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For 1906, issues the date is written in the Chinese character 午 for horse and 丙 for fire on the third heavenly stem. These two characters together date the coin on the lunar cycle to 1906 AD. For 1906 Kwangtung 10 Cash, the Krause only gives one generic number, PCGS will attribute an additional four varieties to Concise Catalogue of Modern Chinese Copper Coins reference numbers. The generic Y-10r variety is automatically attributed for free by PCGS in all tiers.

Kwangtung (1906) 10 Cash Y-10r KT.11 PCGS Number 525018

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This variety features the “Standard Dragon” design for the dragon side and the character side having a bent top tip for the Chinese character “Ching.” This variety requires a Variety Attribution fee on Economy Service and is automatically attributed for free with higher-level submission tiers.

Kwangtung (1906) 10 Cash Y-10r KT.12 PCGS Number 525024

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This variety features the same bent top tip of the Chinese character of “Ching” like on KT.11. However, this variety exhibits a non-standard dragon motif with the clouds around the dragon being a different design known as the “Thin Cloud Lines” variety. This variety requires a Variety Attribution fee on Economy Service and is automatically attributed for free with higher-level submission tiers.

Kwangtung (1906) 10 Cash Y-10r KT.13 PCGS Number 530966

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This variety features the “Thin Cloud Lines” dragon variety but with the Chinese character side having a straight top tip of the Chinese character “Ching.” This variety requires a Variety Attribution fee on Economy Service and is automatically attributed for free with higher-level submission tiers.

Kwangtung (1906) 10 Cash Y-10r KT.14 PCGS Number 525021

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This variety features the “Standard Dragon” design along with the straight top tip of the Chinese character “Ching.” This variety requires a Variety Attribution fee on Economy Service and is automatically attributed for free with higher-level submission tiers.

Kwangtung (1907) 10 Cash Y-10r KT.15 PCGS Number 389854

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For 1907 the date characters change to for 未 goat and for 丁 fire on the fourth heavenly stem. These two characters together date the coin on the lunar cycle to 1907 AD. For 1907 there are no major sub-varieties listed or recognized by PCGS. 1907 Kwangtung 10 Cash coins have the “Thin Cloud Lines” dragon. The generic Y-10r and KT.15 variety is automatically attributed for free by PCGS in all tiers.

Kwangtung (1908) 10 Cash Y-10r KT.16 PCGS Number 411373

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For 1908 the date characters change to for 申 monkey and for 戊 earth on the fifth heavenly stem. These two characters together date the coin on the lunar cycle to 1908 AD. This variety features the correct Emperor for the date, 緒光 meaning “Kwang-Hsu.” The generic Y-10r and KT.16 variety is automatically attributed for free by PCGS in all tiers.

Kwangtung (1908) 10 Cash KT.17 PCGS Number 525027

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This variety is a mule error, in which the obverse and reverse were never intended to be paired together. The Chinese character side features the monkey and earth characters meaning 1908. The dragon side features the Chinese characters 宣統 meaning “Hsuan-Tung,” who wouldn’t be emperor until 1909. This is a very rare variety and PCGS certification is highly recommended. This variety is automatically attributed for free by PCGS in all tiers.

Kwangtung (1909) 10 Cash Y-20r KT.18 PCGS Number 150162

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For 1909 Kwangtung 10 Cash coins, the design changed from the previous 1906-1908 designs. The characters on the right and left side of the characters 部戶 mean Board of Revenue Minting Authority and were dropped from the coin, replaced instead with the characters for the Chinese date. The 1909 coins feature the characters 酉 meaning rooster and 己 for earth on the sixth heavenly stem. On the dragon side, two of the Chinese characters are replaced with 宣統, meaning “Hsuan-Tung.” This variety is automatically attributed for free by PCGS in all tiers.

Kwangtung (1909) 10 Cash KT.19 PCGS Number 525030

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This variety is a mule error, the obverse and reverse never intended for pairing together. The coin has the 1909-character side. However, the dragon features the title 緒光,meaning “Kwang-Hsu,” which is the previous emperor and not for 1909. This is a very rare variety and PCGS certification is highly recommended. This variety is automatically attributed for free by PCGS in all tiers.

After 1909, Kwangtung will not produce more copper coinage until 1912. For the dragon issue coppers of the Kwangtung province, collecting by type is very easy but collecting by variety can be a great challenge. Some coins are still great rarities and it is unknown if more varieties are waiting to be discovered.

Coin Collecting: Basics China

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