China Fengtien (Fen-Tien) One Tael (Counterfeit)  1903
China Fengtien (Fen-Tien) One Tael (Counterfeit) 1903

Over the past few centuries China used two monetary systems: the cash system and the dollar system. In the cash system, 1000 cash equals one tael, at least approximately, since actual conversion rates changed with time and location. In the dollar system, 10 cash equals one cent, and 100 cents equals one dollar.

The coin catalogs show that Fengtien Province minted various cash and dollar coins, but no tael coins were produced, except one. The single Fengtien tael was produced as a pattern, that is, a trial coin that never circulated. The Fengtien tael is known by its Krause Mischler designation KM-PnA15 and is dated 1903. There is only one known specimen.

It was major numismatic (coin collecting) news when PCGS, a respected coin service, authenticated, graded, and encapsulated the PnA15. You can read about it, with pictures of the famous coin, on the PCGS site. The coin is insured for $5 million US dollars. It is not over-insured.

Mark, you might have a previously unknown genuine PnA15, but I doubt it. (Wouldn't that be nice?) Instead you have one of the many known counterfeits of the famous coin. You can find these on Internet auction sites and in coin shops around the world. These fake coins are worth zero, or close to zero, so there is no need to insure you coin for $5 million.

If you go to the PCGS page and compare your coin to the genuine one, you will find many small differences. For the fake in our picture, there are two obvious differences: (1) the dragon image is mis-aligned, and (2) the annotation Fen-Tien is not hyphenated.

Thanks, Mark, for an interesting inquiry.

Coin: 13729 , Genre: The Sinosphere
Requested by: Mark, Wed, 30-Jan-2013 00:17:29 GMT
Answered by: Chris, Wed, 09-Oct-2013 00:33:18 GMT
Reviewed by Chris - Appraisal OK, Sat, 17-Jan-2015 22:45:39 GMT
Requester description: Fen - tien province one tael One tael
Tags: china fengtien fen tien one tael counterfeit shinese chin chine chian chinese chineese ones replica counterfet fake counterfiet reproductions repro reproduction counterfeits replicas forgery fakes province dragon circle dragons circled encircle crrcle cirle circlet ring circles circlr circal citcle encircled ringed circumscibed cirlce circel encircles encircling rings circling cirlces circular cicurling circumscribed rose rosette floret flower flowerettes rosettes rossette roses florets blossom fler fleurs lises leis lisse flur folwers stems trefoils floral lily orchid posy bouquet flowers fllower flour bud fleur bloomed trefoil floer stem flowery lilys fluer fleures pedals

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