Displayed here is a coin from a series of twelve 1/2 oz gold lunar coins which commemorate each animal of the Chinese zodiac. The coins are all scallop shaped, or as the Chinese say, plum blossom-shaped. Each coin celebrates the animal of the Chinese zodiac associated with that coin’s year of issue. The first coin of this series was issued in 1993. Each of the twelve coins from the series is 27mm in diameter (measured to the edge of the coin as defined by the furthest extent of the scallop shape), and has a mintage of 2,300 pieces.
The coin commemorates the 2002 Year of the Horse. It has been certified as a coin of proof quality with a purity of 99.9%. It’s face value, which appears struck onto the bottom right of the reverse face, is 200 yuan.
Rendered on the reverse face of the coin is a painting by the celebrated Chinese artist, Liu Jiyou (1918-1983). Liu Jiyou was inspired by his father, Liu Kuiling, who was also a renowned painter of plants and animals. The later work of Liu Jiyou features a combination of both Chinese and western techniques – skills he honed while studying at the Academy of Fine Arts in Tianjin. The painting on the reverse is “Picture of Galloping Horse”. It depicts a horse at full gallop, its mane and tail flying about giving an impression of the animal’s great speed.
The coin’s obverse face features the Dazheng Hall of the Shenyang Imperial Palace. The hall is the oldest building in the palace which was built in 1625 in the centre of Shenyang. The palace served at the imperial home of the early Qing Dynasty (1644-1912) emperors. Above the image of the Dazheng Hall is inscribed “The People’s Republic of China” in Chinese characters. The year of production, 2002, appears below the image.
Occupying the seventh place in the cycle of twelve, the horse is one of the more popular animals in the Chinese zodiac. It embodies a spirit of independence, freedom, and confidence. People who have the horse as their sign are seen as intelligent, quick-witted individuals. Although gifted, energetic, and creative, they can be rebellious and fickle.
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.