The coin shown is one of a series of lunar coins struck to commemorate the twelve Chinese zodiac creatures. The series consists of twelve 1kg round-shaped silver coins. Each coin in the series features one animal – the animal associated with the year of issue of that individual coin. This is the 2004 coin of the series and features the Year of the Monkey as its theme. Like the other coins in the series it is a 1kg silver coin of proof quality. It has a purity of 99.9% and a mintage of 3,800 pieces. The Year of the Monkey coin measures 100mm in diameter and has a face value of 300 yuan.
Shown on the reverse face is an image of a mother monkey and one of her young. The mother stands, leaning forward over the young, scratching its leg with one hand while protectively resting its other arm over the shoulder of its offspring. The young monkey paws at its mother’s haunch. Appearing beneath this picture at the bottom of the coin face is the coin’s face value, 300 yuan.
Shown on the obverse face is an intricate design consisting of a traditional Chinese folk paper cutting representing a monkey among flowers and other foliage surrounded by a leafy motif. Above the image of the paper cutting is the inscription: “The People’s Republic of China”. At the bottom of the coin face is the year of issue, 2004.
People whose birth date falls in the Year of the Monkey are thought to be fun-loving and inquisitive, verging on nosey. They are flexible, multitalented and active in work and life, and are generally good fun to be around. Although the monkey is actually very clever and a thinker at heart, its bouncy and playful exterior often conceals this somewhat more serious aspect of its character.