Between 1993 and 2004, the Shenyang Mint released a series of twelve lunar coins, each featuring the animal that corresponds to the year of release. This coin, produced in the year 2000, features the Dragon, an appropriate animal to usher in the new millennium. This coin, like the others in the series, is in the shape of a plum blossom, a Chinese harbinger of springtime.
This coin is struck of 99.9% pure silver and is certified as proof in quality. Each coin was struck multiple times, and thus bears a mirrored background and matte embellishments. The coin weighs 2/3 of an ounce and bears the denomination of 10 yuan. It measures 36 millimeters from petal to petal, at the widest part of the coin. In all, 6800 silver flower Year of the Dragon coins were released in 2000.
The dragon is one of the Four Great Animals, or Four Guardians of Heaven, along with the tortoise, phoenix and tiger. It is thought to be a particularly powerful sign, and it is the only mythical animal of the Chinese Zodiac. As such, it holds a special place in the psyche of the Chinese people. This born in this year are thought to be fearless, ambitious and impulsive. Dragons are unafraid of risks and no stranger to adventure. Though these qualities may seem overbearing to some, dragons are also unfailingly generous and kind. They often give gifts of their kindness with no strings attached.
The painting featured on the reverse face is by an unknown artist. This painting depicts a coiled dragon above a roiling sea. The dragon is often pictured in ancient Chinese paintings along with water. Here, the dragon tosses a flaming pearl to the sky. At the bottom right of the reverse face is the face value of the coin, 10 yuan.
The Five Pavilion Bridge of Yangzhou is shown on the obverse face of the coin. This bridge was built in 1757 and features five pavilions. This bridge was constructed to connect one side of the Slender West Lake to the other. Above the bridge is the inscription, “The People’s Republic of China.” At the bottom edge of the obverse face is 2000, the year of release.
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