String of cash coins (currency unit) – Wikipedia

A string of cash coins ( traditional Chinese : 貫, 索, 緡, 繦, 鏹, [ a ] 吊, 串, 弔, 錢貫, 貫錢, [ bacillus ] 貫文, 吊文, or 串文 ; french : Ligature de sapèques ) refers to a diachronic Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Ryukyuan, and vietnamese currency unit of measurement that was used as a superunit of the chinese cash, japanese mon, Korean mun, Ryukyuan mon, and vietnamese văn currencies. The square hole in the center of cash coins served to allow for them to be strung together in strings, the term would later besides be used on banknotes and served there as a superunit of wén ( 文 ). [ degree centigrade ] anterior to the Song dynasty strings of cash coins were called guàn ( 貫 ), suǒ ( 索 ), or mín ( 緡 ), while during the Ming and Qing dynasties they were called chuàn ( 串 ) or diào ( 吊 ). [ 1 ] [ 2 ] In Japan and Vietnam the term 貫 would continue to be used until the abolition of cash coins in those respective countries. During the Qing dynasty a drawstring of 1000 cash coins and valued at 1 tael of flatware ( but variants of regional standards a low as 500 cash coins per string besides existed ). [ 3 ] [ 4 ] 1000 coins strung together were referred to as a chuàn ( 串 ) or diào ( 吊 ) and were accepted by traders and merchants per string because counting the individual coins would cost excessively much clock. Because the strings were often accepted without being checked for damaged coins and coins of subscript quality and bull alloys, these strings would finally be accepted based on their nominal value preferably than their weight ; this system is comparable to that of a decree currentness. Because the reckon and stringing in concert of cash coins was such a time-consuming tax, people known as qiánpù ( 錢鋪 ) would string cash coins in concert in strings of 100 coins, of which ten would form a single chuàn. The qiánpù would receive payment for their services in the form of taking a few cash coins from every string they composed. Because of this, a chuàn was more likely to consist of 990 coins rather than 1000 coins, and because the profession of qiánpù had become a universally accept commit, these chuàns were frequently placid nominally valued at 1000 cash coins. [ 6 ] [ 7 ] The number of coins in a single string was locally determined, as in one district a string could consist of 980 cash coins, while in another district this could entirely be 965 cash coins. These numbers were based on the local salaries of the qiánpù. [ 8 ] [ 9 ] [ 10 ] During the Qing dynasty the qiánpù would frequently search for older and rarer coins to sell these to coin collectors at a higher price. The phone number of cash coins which had to be strung together to form a string differed both from region to region as time period or by the materials used to manufacture the cash coins. For example, under the reign of the Tự Đức Emperor of the Nguyễn dynasty, one string of cash coins included 600 zinc coins, [ 11 ] while during the later days of the french colonial period, a string of cash coins was 500 copper debase coins. In Vietnam a string of cash coins had the nominal rate of 1 mexican chilean peso or 1 french Indochinese kurus. [ 12 ] [ 13 ] During the former nineteenth century in Qing China, some currentness systems were named after how many cash coins made up a string, such as the Jingqian ( 京錢, ‘metropolitan cash ‘ ) or Zhongqian ( 中錢 ), [ 14 ] which was an exchange rate that was used in the capital city of Beijing. The Jingqian organization allowed a nominal debt of 2 wén ( 文 ) which could be paid out using merely one physical cash coin alternatively of two. In this system a string of Beijing cash coins ( 吊 ) required only 500 cash coins as opposed to the majority of China, which used 1000 cash coins for a string ( 串 ). [ 15 ] meanwhile, in the Dongqian ( 東錢, ‘Eastern cash ‘ ) system, an rally rate used for cash coins in the Fengtian state, alone 160 cash coins were needed to make up a string. During the Qing dynasty period, the term chuàn was used to designate long strings while the term diào was used to design short strings.

Although the term appeared frequently on banknotes, the only cash coin to have ever had the currentness whole “ String of cash coins ” as a separate of its inscription was the Nguyễn dynasty-era Tự Đức Bảo Sao ( 嗣德寶鈔 ) 1 quán cash coin ( 準當一貫, chuẩn đang nhất quán ), which was worth 600 văn ( or 60 mạch ). [ 17 ] [ 18 ]

background [edit ]

much like how cash coins are counted in wén ( 文 ), until the Qin dynasty, China used cowrie shells and bronze cowrie shells which were denominated in bèi ( 貝 ) and a string of cowrie shells was called a péng ( 朋 ). however, it is presently not known how much bèi was in a péng. [ 1 ]

Strings of cash coin units during the Qing dynasty [edit ]

During the Qing dynasty different count of cash coins were used to make up strings of cash coins. [ 19 ]

  • 1 chuàn (

    ) = 1000 wén (


  • 1 metropolitan diào (

    ) = 1000 metropolitan cash (



  • 1 metropolitan diào (

    ) = 500 pieces of “standard cash coins” (


    , before 1853)

  • 1 metropolitan diào (

    ) = 50 pieces of “big cash coins” (


    , after 1861)

In actual circulation, however, cash coins throughout taiwanese history were put on strings in ten-spot groups of ( purportedly ) one hundred coins each ; these strings were separated by a slub between each group. [ 20 ] During the Qing dynasty period, strings of cash coins rarely actually contain 1000 cash coins and normally had something like 950 or 980 or a similar quantity ; these amounts were due to local preferences rather than being random in any imprint. [ 20 ] In the larger cities cash shops would make specific strings of cash coins for specific markets. [ 20 ] The cash shops existed because at the time there were many different kinds of cash coins circulating in China, including old chinese cash coins from former dynasties ( 古錢 ), korean cash coins, japanese cash coins ( 倭錢 ), vietnamese cash coins, large and little genuine Qing dynasty cash coins, and different kinds of counterfeits, such as illegally private-minted cash coins. [ 20 ] Some of these strings would contain entirely actual Zhiqian, while other strings could contain between 30 % and 50 % of counterfeit and scraggy cash coins. [ 20 ] The actual number of cash coins on a string and the share of counterfeits in a string was by and large known to everyone who resided in that township by the type of knots that were used. [ 20 ] Each of these different kind of strings of cash coins fulfilled different functions. [ 20 ] For model, one string of cash coins was satisfactory to be used in a local anesthetic grain market, while it would not be accepted at a meat marketplace, while another character of string was able to be used in both markets but not to pay taxes. [ 20 ] The cash shops sorted all cash coins into identical specific categories, then would make up allow kinds of strings that were intended for habit in specific markets or to pay taxes to the government. [ 20 ]

Banknotes [edit ]

chuàn wén (


, or a string of cash coins) issued by the Da Sheng Chang in the year 1919. A bill from the Republic of China of 1, or a string of cash coins ) issued by the Da Sheng Chang in the class 1919. During the Song dynasty the first series of standard politics Jiaozi notes were issued in 1024 with denominations like 1 guàn ( 貫, or 700 wén ), 1 mín ( 緡, or 1000 wén ), up to 10 guàn. In 1039 only banknotes of 5 guàn and 10 guàn were issued, and in 1068 a appellation of 1 guàn was introduced which became forty percentage of all circulating Jiaozi banknotes. [ 21 ] The Huizi besides continued to use these currency units. Between the years of 1161 and 1166 the government of the Song dynasty had produced 28,000,000 dào ( 道, peer to a guàn or 1000 wén ) in Huizi notes. The rally rate between Guanzi banknotes and bull cash coins was 1 guàn for 770 wén while Huizi notes of the eighteenth production time period were valued at 3 guàn for 1 wén. [ 22 ] [ 23 ] [ 24 ] During the last days of the Southern Song dynasty, China was suffering from inflation to the charge that the respect of the Huizi had lowered then much that a guàn was merely accepted at between 300 and 400 cash coins, which caused people to start hoarding the coins, removing them from circulation which had a devastate consequence on the economy. As the Mongols continued marching south, the taiwanese military required more money causing the government to print an excessive total of Huizi banknotes. [ 25 ] The guàn currentness unit would later besides be used by the Jurchen Jin dynasty and the Mongol Yuan dynasty on their Jiaochao banknotes, though ascribable to hyperinflation these currencies would not be able to be exchanged with any veridical cash coins and under Mongol principle non-paper forms of currency were abolished. [ 26 ] [ 27 ] [ 28 ] [ 29 ] From the early fourteenth century to the early one-sixteenth century in Japan, banknotes which were known as saifu were used for transactions, payments, and the transfer of funds between remote control regions. Most of these saifu banknotes had a measure of 10 kanmon ( 10,000 mon, or 10 strings of 1000 copper coins ), these notes besides circulated among the general public. [ 30 ] Under the Ming dynasty the Da-Ming Baochao would besides continue using guàn as a currency unit of measurement for its denominations. [ 31 ] [ 32 ] The 1 guàn Da-Ming Baochao bill was in the first place good for 1,000 copper-alloy cash coins and had a size of 36.4×22 curium, making it the largest chinese paper bill ever produced. In the middle of its design was an double of a bowed stringed instrument of cash coins ( 錢貫 ) to show what it was worth. At the bed of the Da-Ming Baochao bill was text which explained that it was issued by the Zhongshusheng ( 中書省, ‘Palace Secretariat ‘ ), that it was a valid type of currentness used concurrently with copper-alloy cash coins, and that counterfeiters would face a penalty and those who notified the authorities of counterfeiting would be highly rewarded. Despite in the first place circulating concurrently with cash coins, the Da-Ming Baochao became a decree currency and would late nobelium long be able to be exchanged for any actual cash coins. [ 33 ] privately produced banknotes of the Qing dynasty, as is common for China, had a big variety of names designating them across the country with names being used such as Zhuangpiao ( 莊票 ), Pingtie ( 憑帖 ), Duitie ( 兌帖 ), Shangtie ( 上帖 ), Hupingtie ( 壺瓶帖 ), or Qitie ( 期帖 ). The denominations used on them varied greatly with some reach a high as 5 diào ( 吊 ). [ 15 ] During the early days of the Republic of China, the currency units of chuàn wén and diào wén were still being used on banknotes and zhuangpiao. [ 34 ] The Hupeh Provincial Bank ( 湖北官錢局, Hubei Guan-Qianju ), a provincial government-owned qianzhuang created by Zhang Zhidong, issued their own banknotes denominated both in taels and in chuàn ( 串 ), which were known as the Hubei Guanpiao ( 湖北官票 ), until 1927. [ 35 ]

Bamboo tallies [edit ]

Some chinese bamboo tallies, which circulated in the provinces of Jiangsu, Zhejiang, and Shandong from the 1870s until the 1940s, [ 36 ] [ 37 ] used “ strings of cash coins ” as a currentness unit of measurement, but besides contained extra inscriptions stating that they would not be paid out in “ regular ” cash coins. [ 36 ] For exercise, a bamboo score with the text “ 串錢壹仟文 ” ( Chuàn qián yīqiān wén, ‘ a string of 1000 cash coins ‘ ) could contain the extra information that it if were to be redeemed, it would be paid out in Daqian ( 大錢 ) of “ 10 cash ” coins. This bamboo total would then be paid out in a string of 100 Daqian of 10 wén. [ 36 ]

Below their denominations many bamboo tallies had the chinese characters xin hao ( 信號, ‘ guarantee check ‘ ) to indicate that the bamboo tally is trustworthy to be worth its state ( noun phrase ) measure. [ 36 ] Another way to indicate what type of cash coins would be paid out is if the bamboo reckoning did or did not contain the inscription 10 wén ( 十文 ) below its circus tent hole. [ 36 ] It could then contain an dedication like “ 串錢貳百文 ” ( Chuàn qián èrbǎi wén, ‘ a string of 200 cash coins ‘ ) that would only have to be paid out in a string of 20 cash coins of 10 wén quite than 200 cash coins of 1 wén. The publish authorities would do this due to the concept of “ token ” money that the taiwanese employed at the clock. [ 36 ] As the Qing dynasty ‘s politics started manufacturing Daqian since the Xianfeng period that contained high nominative values but had intrinsic values that were only slightly more valuable than the low denomination coinages, the issuer of the bamboo tally would be able to make a profit off of this position. This was because the bamboo score in wonder would be valued more than the promised redeemed prize. [ 36 ] In general, bamboo tallies in the region were not always redeemed and would continue to circulate in their local areas as a character of option currentness a long as the local populace would maintain their trust that the bamboo token had value or worth. This situation translated to the profits of issuing the score being kept by the issue authority. [ 36 ] And if the bamboo count were to be redeemed, the jesus would receive a weight of bronze or administration a lot lower than the bamboo count ‘s nominal prize. [ 36 ]


( weight unit unit ) [edit ]

The kan ( japanese 貫, alternatively kamme 貫目 ) as a japanese unit of measurement is a bead weight for civilized pearls. Kan equals one thousand monme or 3.75 kilogram. The advanced kan was officially established in the japanese Law of Weights & Measures of 1891. It is still used global as a slant indicator for culture pearls. [ 38 ]

Qing dynasty [edit ]

William Sachtleben (right) with a Russian friend with enough strings of cash coins to pay for a meal at a restaurant in Ghulja in 1892. American cyclist William Sachtleben visited the city of Ghulja in 1892 and was preparing to hertz to Beijing ; while preparing for his slip together with the russian consul, he noted the difficulty in transporting strings of cash coins, express :

“ We thought we had sufficient money to carry us, or, quite, a much as we could carry…for the weight of the chinese money necessity for a travel of over three thousand miles was, as the Russian consul thought, one of the greatest of our about insurmountable obstacles. In the interior of China there is no coin except the chen or sapeks, an alloy of bull and tin, in the imprint of a disk, having a hole in the center by which the coins may be strung in concert. ” — William Lewis Sachtleben

Sachtleben noted how there were no money exchange banks in the chinese home. Of the ability to use and exchange the cash coins Sachtleben noted :

“ All, however, would have to be weighed in the tinza, or minor chinese scales we carried with us, and on which were marked the fün, tchan, and liang of the monetary scale. But the respect of these terms is reckoned in chen ( chinese cash coins ), and changes with about every district. This necessity for watchfulness, together with the frequency of regretful silver and loaded yambas, and the proclivity of the Chinese to “ knock down ” on flush the smallest leverage, tends to convert a traveler in China into a regular usurer. ” — William Lewis Sachtleben

finally Sachtleben and the russian consul managed to exchange the strings of cash coins for silver coins as they were easier to carry on their tripper, but noted how the money that they had to carry was much heavier than their camera equipment. [ 39 ] [ 40 ] british internet explorer Isabella Bird wrote of the annoyance that strings of cash coins caused to the chinese she witnessed in her travels state :

“ Exchanging eighteen shillings English for brass cash, the weight of them amounted to seventy-two pounds, which had to be carried by the coolies “. [ 41 ] — Isabella Lucy Bird

Nguyễn dynasty ( french Indochina ) [edit ]

During the colonial era in french Cochinchina, Chinese sapèques ( known as lý ) were entirely used as casino tokens by gambling houses and were not used for other purchases unless deal was being conducted with Qing China. The general conversion rate was 1000 lý = 1 lạng = 7.50 french francs. The sapèques which circulated at the clock of french Cochinchina were made from zinc and had a very distinctive feather center hole allowing for them to be strung into strings of 1000 zinc sapèques or 600 copper-alloy sapèques. These strings were known as quán tiền ( 貫錢 ) in vietnamese and as ligatures or chapalets in French. Each string is promote subdivided into 10 tiền consisting of 60 sapèques ; these coins were valued in their quantity preferably than in weight. These coins normally featured the predominate or earned run average championship of the reigning Nguyễn sovereign and were highly ill manufactured with bad alloys, causing the strings to frequently break. many sapèques break, resulting in considerable losses for their owners due to their brittleness. Charles Lemire described the fleshy nature and unmanageable mobility of strings of sapèques as “ a currency worthy of Lycurgus of Sparta “ and non numerantur, sed ponderantur ( “ they are not counted but weighed ” ). [ 42 ] To the french, zinc coinage besides presented a huge troublesomeness since their colonization of Cochinchina in 1859, as the exchange between french francs and zinc Tự Đức Thông Bảo ( 嗣德通寶 ) văn mean that a big sum of zinc coins were exchanged for the french franc. Zinc cash coins frequently broke during transportation as the strings that kept them together would much snap. The coins would fall to the reason and a great total of them would break into pieces. These coins were besides less repellent to oxidation, causing them to corrode faster than early coinages .

“ Another serious disadvantage consisted in the sum absence of token coinages early than the inconvenient sapèque one of zinc : one needed an weapon avant-garde to go central 1,000 francs in ligatures for the one sapèques, since it had the weight of a barrel and one-half …. and at the grocery store, the wimp weighed some times less than its price in currentness. ”J. Silvestre, Monnaies et de Médailles de l’Annam et de la Cochinchine Française (1883)

prior to 1849 brass coins had become an extreme curio and lone circulated in the provinces surrounding the capital cities of Vietnam, but under Tự Đức, new regulations and ( uniform ) standards for copper cash coins were created to help promote their usage. between 1868 and 1872 administration coins were only about 50 % copper and 50 % zinc. Due to the natural scarcity of copper in Vietnam, the state constantly lacked the resources to produce sufficient copper coinage for circulation. [ 43 ]

Galleries [edit ]

Strung cash coins [edit ]

Strings of cash coins used as a currency unit of measurement on banknotes [edit ]

Slang names [edit ]

In early twentieth century Sơn Tây Province slang, the term for a string of cash coins was Lòi. [ 44 ] meanwhile in the late nineteenth hundred Điêm gull spoken by the lower classify people of Saigon, the terms were Què and Quẻ as an abbreviation of Quán ( 貫 ). [ 45 ]

Notes [edit ]

  1. ^ cưỡng ( 繦/鏹). In vietnamese ) .
  2. ^ quán tiền). In vietnamese ) .
  3. ^ normally 1000


    , but the act could be substantially different depending on the time and place .

References [edit ]

Sources [edit ]

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