Japanese and Chinese antiques and art from B & C
Large Japanese Oval Gold Tensho Oban Coin Replica

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Directory: Archives: Regional Art: Asian: Japanese: Pre 1960: item # 1189148

Please refer to our stock # 13-010A28 when inquiring.

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B & C   Antiques
P. O. Box 291
Derby, CT 06418

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Large Japanese Oval Gold Tensho Oban Coin Replica

Considered to be one of the most beautiful coins in the world, the Japanese oban was a large oblong striated and stamped gold piece, which often appeared painted with Japanese characters. This is a gilded gilded brass replica of the rare oval gold Tensho Naga (“long”) Oban. There are overall striations and stamped circular emblems of paulownia on both sides, and the front is painted with large black calligraphic characters. It likely dates to the mid-20th century.

The Tensho Oban was first minted by Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who had become the nation's most powerful feudal lord in the late 16th century. Securing significant amounts of gold and silver, Hideyoshi minted a series of gold and silver coins from 1573 to 1592. Of these coins, the most famous was the Tensho Oban. This gold coin, weighing approximately 165 grams, was stamped with emblems of paulownia on both sides as a guarantee of its fine quality. Its weight, as well as the name and signature of the mint official, were written on the obverse in black-ink calligraphy. A large-denomination currency, the Tensho Oban was rarely exchanged in daily transactions. Instead, it served mainly as a reward or gift to the imperial family, aristocrats, or samurai warriors. Nevertheless, historians of Japanese money acknowledge Hideyoshi's gold and silver coins as a form of currency. As a result of their standardization of weight and shape, Hideyoshi's gold and silver coins helped prepare the way for a unified currency system, which was achieved by Tokugawa Ieyasu during the Edo Period. The Tensho Oban was the first type of Oban minted, foreshadowing the full implementation of Tokugawa coinage in 1601.

Please inquire for photos/descriptions of other similar examples of Japanese coinage from our collection which may become available for sale.

CONDITION is excellent.

DIMENSIONS: 6 ¼” (16 cm) x 3 ½” (8.8 cm). Weight: 4 ounces (113 grams).

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