World Coins

Korea’s first modern machine-struck coin pattern in auction

When Korea needed a more modern coinage system, a set of patterns was created in 1886, including this white metal 1-warn piece. It is estimated at $15,000 to $20,000.

Images courtesy of Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio.

The following post is pulled from Coin World’s International page in the Aug. 18 issue.

Two coin shows held in Hong Kong each year bring thousands of collectors together, and related auctions consistently feature rare and historic Chinese and other Asian coins.

Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio’s Aug. 18 and 19 auction in Hong Kong precedes the Aug. 22 to 24 Hong Kong International Coin Convention.

Several lots showcased here reflect just some of the diversity and scope of items in the auction.

A digital catalog may be viewed at the firm's website and a print version may be ordered from the firm at 800-458-4646.

Korea’s first modern machine-struck coin pattern

As increasing trade brought more Europeans to Korea, the need for a coinage system familiar and acceptable to international trading partners became clear.

In the 1880s, the predominant coins in use were the square-holed copper coins, which, though a “perfectly acceptable form of payment for local transactions,” were not widely accepted by foreigners.

Eventually, the Osaka Mint in Japan was contracted to help modernize the Chonwankuk Government Mint and Korea’s coinage.

A series of patterns struck on modern machinery were created in 1886, including a white metal pattern for the circulating silver 1-warn coin.

An example of this pattern is offered in the auction. Graded Mint State 64 by Numismatic Guaranty Corp., it is tied with one other for the finest known, according to the auction firm.

The pattern has an estimate of $15,000 to $20,000 in U.S. funds.

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