Very Rare Mint State “Reversed Pattern” China Kwangtung 3 Mace 6 ½ Candareens Results

As we continue our recap
of the Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio April Hong Kong Showcase Auction today’s featured
coin is
steeped in rich historical importance as well as being a choice example.
This Rare
Pattern” Kwangtung ½ Dollar
brought strong results, realizing $52,580. If you would like results like these when
you sell your coins, consider consigning to our upcoming sales in August— the
ANA World’s Fair of Money auction in Anaheim, California and our Showcase
Auction in Hong Kong. In case you wanted to read further, the original article
can be found below.

Authorization to establish the Kwangtung mint was granted in 1887,
implemented by Viceroy Chang Chi-Tung. In order to modernize the mint, minting
machinery, dies, hubs, and other equipment were ordered from the Heaton mint at
Birmingham. Upon their arrival in 1888, Kwangtung became the first mint in
China to use modern minting machinery. At this time, this mint was the largest
in the world. Allan Wyon designed patterns for the first coins in the
denominations of 1 Dollar, 50 Cents, 20 Cents, and 10 Cents. The first Heaton
patterns were later delivered to the Chinese ambassador in London. For some
reason, the initial order did not include the 5 Cent piece, struck later at the
Kwangtung mint. The series is referred to by numismatists as the "Reversed
Pattern," referring to the English and Chinese legends, which are reversed
from what later became standard. Initially, Kwangtung introduced the first
coinage with a higher silver value, with the intention of replacing foreign
coins circulating within China. The standard of 7 Mace 2 Candareens (Dollar)
was raised to 7 Mace 3 Candareens in order to gain public acceptance and
replace the Mexican 8 Reales.

The obverse contains four large Chinese characters, which depict “Kuang
Hsu Yuan Pao” which means Valuable Coin (from the) Kuang Hsu (regime). In the
exact center are found four Manchu characters which denote the same
information. The upper legend states “Kwang-Tung Province” and the lower legend
provides the weight, 3 Mace And 6 ½ Candareens, which also provides its value
of 50 Cents when converted to the Tael system. These upper and lower legends
are separated by small rosettes. The reverse of the coin features the
distinctive Imperial flying Dragon in the center, surrounded by Chinese
characters. This upper legend reads: Made in Kwangtung Province. The lower
portion states: Treasury scales, 3 Mace and 6 ½ Candareens

This coin represents the Chinese
emerging into modern minting, and is
historically significant
as it is the first of the modern machine struck silver coins of China.
Represented here is the first use of what became the "standard
design" for provincial mints, bearing the effigy of a facing dragon. This
type became the standard design, not only for the Kwangtung mint, but also for
all mints in China that adopted the dragon design. The piece offered for sale
here is quite rare in that it is actually a circulation strike, most of which
were melted down to retrieve the extra silver. Light clear almond color tone is
enhanced by generous amounts of underlying luster. Upon close inspection the
tone can be seen to be an amalgam of other colors. Well struck, with the
reverse center Manchu characters all crisp and clear, plus full scales the
entire length of the dragon.

We are now accepting consignments of world and ancient coins for our
August 2016 ANA Auction as well as Chinese and other Asian coins and currency
for our August 2016 Hong Kong Showcase Auction. Time is running short, so if
you are interested in consigning your coins and paper currency (whether a whole
collection or a single rarity) be sure to contact one of our consignment

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