This is a one ounce, 99.9% pure, silver scalloped coin, produced in 2002, the Year of the Horse. The coin measures 40 millimeters in diameter from scalloped edge to scalloped edge. This is one in a series of Chinese Zodiac coins, produced from 1993 to 2004, a full twelve year lunar cycle. This coin honors the animal that corresponds to the year of release, the horse. Each of the other coins in the series also honors the animal of the year of its release. This coin has a mintage of 6800 pieces and bears the face value of 10 yuan. The coin is proof in quality, as shown by the mirrored metal background.
Liu Jiyou, son of the famed Liu Kuiling, is the artist memorialized on the reverse face of this coin. Liu, like his father, grew up in the countryside and was very fond of painting animals. Liu was also a skilled figure painter who became famous for his comic-like paintings in the later years of his career. Liu Jiyou, like his contemporaries, incorporated Western technique with Chinese technique, a combined style pioneered in part by his father. He studied at the Academy of Fine arts at Tianjin as well as in Europe.
“Picture of a Galloping Horse,” by Liu Jiyou is shown here. The horse gallops across the face of the coin, its mane and tail sailing out as if to represent its incredible speed and unbridled freedom. The face value of the coin appears below and to the right of the horse.
The horse is seen as an independent, wild and free animal in Chinese culture. Those born in the year of the horse are known to have very strong personalities and a lot of confidence. They may also be bold and venturesome while maintaining a sense of aloofness and an air of mystery.
On the obverse face of the coin, one can see one of the main buildings of Shenyang Palace. The building shown is Dazheng Hall, the oldest building that currently stands in the palace. It was built in 1625 and was the emperor’s palace in bustling Shenyang during the early Qing Dynasty. Above Dazheng is the inscription, “The People’s Republic of China;” below it is the year of release.
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