Author Topic: Need help determing if fake and identification  (Read 7966 times)

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Offline Luna

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Need help determing if fake and identification
« on: January 07, 2016, 02:20:35 PM »
I am somewhat new at collecting Chinese coins. I collected quit a few as a kid because I thought they looked interesting.

I am mainly needing help with several of them at determining if they are real. I didn't take a picture of the back of picture one. But, I am thinking most of them are real.
Picture 3 are the backs of pic 2 and I am thinking the copper one is fake because its copper and the indentations around rim and characters is quit deep.

I also noticed on some of them there looks like a resin stuck in parts of the characters. Could that indicate that they are fake as well?

Offline TomG

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Re: Need help determing if fake and identification
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2016, 01:55:25 PM »
Hello Luna,

Ancient Chinese coins were sometimes counterfeited beginning around the late 1960's but the varying colors and sizes among your shown specimens is actually a hopeful sign for authenticity. Mass produced counterfeit batches often arrive with homogeneous metal composition and same patina coloration. Sometimes reddish copper coins also imply the region from which the copper was sourced, e.g. famous red copper from Sinkiang Province. Higher copper content makes for a softer than bronze coin that wears and dents faster in circulation.

Authentic ancient coins are found in shipwrecks, excavated temple sites and the like. My paternal grandmother gave me under a hundred coins from the Northern Sung, Southern Sung and Tang Dynasties. Many were still stuck together with calcified water deposits and copper carbonates typical for the limestone mountain regions in which she grew up. There is even one from Annam, present day Viet Nam.

They were left on a shoe lace in a bracelet box for twenty years before I decided to identify them. They smelled of wet mildew and copper corrosion. Coin hoards are sometime left in tombs and my Chinese grandparents' generation were hesitant to approach anything related with death. My mother told me how pleased my maternal grandmother was when my aunts and uncles presented her with beautiful flowers until they revealed the nice men at the neighborhood funeral parlor thought she'd like them. She exclaimed, "Deadman's flowers!"

I also have cleaner Qing Dynasty coins. They are from loose coins made into toys swords for amusement of grandchildren. The coin sword constructions used red cotton string typical for tying up bakery boxes in San Francisco Chinatown, wooden sticks, chipboard and sometimes glue. That some of your specimens have glue residue, probably means some of them were used on souvenir cards or perhaps a child's toy.

Chinese collectors like to leave verdigris and patina as undisturbed as possible while still being able to read enough of the coin legends to establish its identity.

The Qing Long Tong Bao coins in your pictures are identified here:
Primal Trek provides historical context here:

The source site covers authentic and counterfeit coins: and has links to Primal Trek and similar sites.


Offline Chinasmith

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Re: Need help determing if fake and identification
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2016, 02:14:42 AM »
These all seem to be genuine Ch'ing (Qing) dynasty coins. Most of them were issued under the Ch'ien Lung emperor (1736-1795), one or two of them under the Chia Ch'ing emperor (1796-1820). In picture 3 the red coin lower left is from the Szechuan Mint; the one above it is from the Board of Works Mint in Peking, as is the one in the lower right. The upper right coin is from the Yunnan Mint. The two middle coins are from the Board of Revenue mint in Peking.