This is one of the zodiac coins created by the China Mint between the years of 1988 and 1999. This coin, authorized for release in 1994, is a one ounce 99.95% pure, platinum coin with a mintage of three hundred. The coins all feature paintings of the twelve creatures of the Chinese zodiac. As 1994 was the year of the dog, the reverse of this coin features two Pekingese dogs, a breed that has its origins in China. The obverse shows the National Emblem of China, a rendering of the Tiananmen Gate crowned by five stars and surrounded by bunches of wheat and rice.
The National Emblem of China has been in use since 1950, directly after the culmination of the Chinese revolution to overturn the Nationalist Party. This emblem shows one of the famed entrances to the Forbidden City, The Gate of Heavenly Peace. The five stars represent the Communist Party and the four classes that contribute to its success: the proletariat, the bourgeoisie, the capitalists and the peasants. This symbolism is taken from Maoís ìBloc of Four Social Classesî theory. On this side of the coin, one can see the characters which signify ìThe Peopleís Republic of China,î below which appears the year of minting, 1994.
On the reverse face of the coin appears the reproduction of a painting by Liu Kuiling (1885-1968). Liu was born in the countryside, which inspired his fondness for painting animals and visions of nature. This painting is entitled, ìPicture of a Pair of Dogs.î Liu learned about perspective and movement from Western artists, and one can see this incorporated into his works. In this work of art, Liu shows two Pekingese dogs sniffing and walking about. The Pekingese was a favorite pet in the Imperial City, and its name even refers to the city of Beijing, the location of the Forbidden City. The face value, 100 yuan, is shown beneath the two dogs. The top edge shows the details about the coinís creation, ìcontains one ounce pure platinum, .9995 Pt.î
In China, the dog represents loyalty and dependability. People born in this year are known to be intelligent, straightforward and idealistic. People born in the Year of the Dog can sometimes be seen as too laid back and somewhat negative. Overall, bravery is the dominant attribute of those born in this year. The symbol of the dog is conflated with that of an extremely loyal and kind friend.
We are available to assist you with any questions on this or other Chinese coins. Our unique expertise and experience in Chinese numismatics covers modern, imperial, republic and circulating coins. We pride ourselves in servicing our clientele to work in building special collections or locate key date coins with help from our global network and have done so since 2004. In addition, we are frequently top bidders on coins and collections when looking to divest.