Need help identifying this coin

Post, ask questions and discuss World and Ancient Coin topics.

Moderator: Daniel

Post Reply
Message
Author
digicube
Coining Around
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:15 am

Need help identifying this coin

#1 Unread post by digicube » Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:24 am

Hello, found this coin, amongst others in an old box belonging to my late grandfather.

It looks Thai because of the picture of a temple but what confuses me is the Chinese characters on the reverse side of the coin.

Just curious if this is rare and if there is any value to it.

Thanks in advance.
Attachments
image1.JPG
IMG_3432.JPG



User avatar
mhonzell
Administrator
Administrator
Posts: 1952
Joined: Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:14 pm
Location: Missouri
Contact:

Re: Need help identifying this coin

#2 Unread post by mhonzell » Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:11 am

I love a puzzle, so here's a comment, or two...
(I've been asked to show how I find some of these coins, so here's a long post with my train of thought.)

You are fighting a few problems:
1) Where was this made?
2) How old is the coin?
3) What did the country of origin's numbers look like then?
4) Is there a class distinction to the letters?
(Chinese numbers written by common folk look different than those found on money.)
5) Is this even a coin?

Let's look for the monetary unit, or a number:
Thailand did not introduce "flat" coins until 1862. So, the "coin" can be no older than this.
The Thai monetary unit is the บาท "baht". And, other units include:
เบี้ย
โสฬส
อัฐ
เสี้ยว/ไพ
ซีก
เฟื้อง
สลึง
สองสลึง
ตำลึง
ชั่ง

(The next to the last one is your coin... the Tamlung. I figured that out much later.)

On a 1996 Baht, the monetary unit is written in simplified text [Yellow box] (see question 3 and 4).
1 Baht.jpg
This makes me think the coin is older since the small circlets are included on the lettering. Also, notice the devices pointed out by the red arrows which are similar to devices on your coin. I believe this to be indicating a radiating crown flanked by two royal parasols. These are associated with the Wat Pho temple in Bangkok and King Mongkut. All associated with Thailand.

The dark red arrow points to the Thai symbol for "1" (also simplified.)
On your coin, I do not see any Thai numbers:
th1.jpg
The lack of a number or monetary unit leads me to believe this is a medal or token.

So, I looked for the King Mongkut devices instead and found:
1) The Wat Pho device was pictured on an 1863 "2 Baht" coin. Notice that there is no date, denomination, or value written on the coin. Instead, these were all determined by the diameter (or mass) of the coin. And, the obverse is obviously different.
1863 - 2 Baht.jpg
2) 1863 date means that Thailand was Siam. So, looking up 1863 Siam Coins, I find a complete set of 1864 Baht coins that look like the coin above and one medal that looks like yours. Here's the medal:
1864 Tamlung.jpg
The medal was produced on the 60th birthday of King Mongkut. He was renamed Rama IV. This is the King portrayed in the movie, "The King and I." During this last of the Rama kings, China was allowed to move into Thailand to keep the European influence under control. Hence, the Chinese characters.


The medal/coin was ascribed as 4 Baht and is considered to be the first commemorative coin of Thailand.

The Chinese inscription says:
TAE MENG TONG PAO : "Negotiable Currency of Cheng Ming"
MENG is the Chinese name for Rama IV.


If authentic, as many imitations were made and still are, it would be worth about $20,000 at VF20 in silver. It has also been found in gold.
Notice that yours has two curved diamonds surrounding the Thai inscription. Some were made with one, and others two, curved diamonds.

Regarding authenticity...
Look at the bottom right Chinese character on the certified coin above and your coin. The horizontal bars and the shape of the right leg's "checkmark" are significantly different. I see a lot of other minor differences, as well.

User avatar
CopperFinger
Coin Wizz
Posts: 334
Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2015 5:17 pm
Location: palmetto florida.

Re: Need help identifying this coin

#3 Unread post by CopperFinger » Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:27 am

Sherlock Holmes could not have done better!

digicube
Coining Around
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:15 am

Re: Need help identifying this coin

#4 Unread post by digicube » Sun Jan 17, 2016 11:44 pm

Thanks Daniel for the time taken to identify this coin.

Looking at the sample you posted here, I think my coin is a fake. The details in the sample look much finer even to my untrained eye.

I guess I'll just dump it back in the box and give up hope in finding some "treasure".

Thanks again!

User avatar
mhonzell
Administrator
Administrator
Posts: 1952
Joined: Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:14 pm
Location: Missouri
Contact:

Re: Need help identifying this coin

#5 Unread post by mhonzell » Mon Jan 18, 2016 12:01 am

Depends on your definition of "treasure".

Once I've completed researching a coin and it's history, I find it far more interesting to own. The coin you have here is rather unique, and had you determined what it was, you'd want to keep it. (Real, or not.) Because, at that point, you know the coin and can talk about it. Why did your grandfather keep it? That's the rest of the story that makes this coin personal.

Well, that's my definition of "treasure". The coin just reminds me of the story.

User avatar
AshleyGallo
Coining Around
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2016 11:00 am

Re: Need help identifying this coin

#6 Unread post by AshleyGallo » Fri Mar 18, 2016 11:11 am

20160318_075612.jpg
Jewish 1 war Silver Shekel
Attachments
20160318_075538.jpg
Jewish 1 war Silver shekel

User avatar
mhonzell
Administrator
Administrator
Posts: 1952
Joined: Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:14 pm
Location: Missouri
Contact:

Re: Need help identifying this coin

#7 Unread post by mhonzell » Fri Mar 18, 2016 12:53 pm

If real, this Year 1, Silver Shekel, could value around $25,000.
Attachments
image03001.jpg

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 37 guests