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Need a hand deciphering Chinese (?) charm  
 

 
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Pillar of the Community

United States
1450 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  02:31 am Show Profile   Check Numismat's eBay Listings Bookmark this topic Add Numismat to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Would greatly appreciate some help deciphering this charm. I haven't been able to find one that matches it. If anyone has an idea of age that would be helpful too, though I'm thinking it's probably not very old.

It's about 45mm in diameter and 2mm thick.

Thanks!



Pillar of the Community
United States
643 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  07:53 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add schmidty to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
There is a nice website I've used for dating Japanese coins. They also have dating info on Chinese (and many other countries). I don't think we are supposed to post links? I need to read up on that part of the forum rules.

But in the mean time, just do a web search for "Creounity Time Machine"
Pillar of the Community
United States
1450 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  08:59 am  Show Profile   Check Numismat's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Numismat to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks schmidty. I've used that site, it's a great one. The developer posts updates on the other coin forum I'm on from time to time.
Alas, there are no numerals on this charm. Just the four non-numeric characters. Looking forward to the day Google can translate from a picture :)
Pillar of the Community
United States
643 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  09:28 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add schmidty to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Ahhh...I didn't think about none of them being numerals.

Yes, wouldn't a visual translator be wonderful? But then about half the posts to this forum would end! haha
Pillar of the Community
United States
1450 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  10:10 am  Show Profile   Check Numismat's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Numismat to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I think half the posts are because people won't Google :D
Valued Member
Netherlands
61 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  11:21 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add AnYangMan to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Such visual translators actually do already exist! I have one for non-kanji Japanese, but I must say it is absolutely atrocious. I believe it only guessed 10 of the 100 I tested correctly. That being said, give them some more time, they’ll improve I hope.

But who needs visual translators when you have human ones? ;) This charm (I use this term loosely) in Chinese actually reads “Jing Xing Tong Bao”. Having collected some Asian cash for a while I feel semi-confident saying that this charm was actually based of of a Vietnamese cash coin, with a similar inscription. This is one of the most common cash types ever issued, between 1740 and 1786, and genuine examples are widely available. I must admit not having that much knowledge on charms, but the reference books will often come in the same lots as the ones on regular cash, so I have a tiny library those. Your type is not listed in Karl Petit’s work, nor that of Remmelts or Fonahn. Which is not that surprising, seeing that they focus mostly on Chinese and Japanese charms.

But I don’t think you need to be an expert to form your opinion about this one; I think it is quite an obvious fake, or as you put it, not a very old one. The reverse doesn’t even look that bad, quite like something that would be a genuine period piece (which is why I think it may have been based on an existing type). But the obverse calligraphy is .. well… atrocious, especially on the “Thong” and the “Xing” character. Apparently, a lot of these semi-fake charms were made during the Vietnam war, for soldiers to take home as souvenirs. Not only fake charms were made by the way; nearly every type that can be thought of was produced; knives, spades, round cash, “modern” cash, silver dollars, you name it, and often of very poor quality. Which is why some numismatist began to specifically refer to these as “Vietnam war-era fakes”.

Might I ask where you acquired this?

Mika
Edited by AnYangMan
01/11/2017 11:31 am
Pillar of the Community
United States
1450 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  2:09 pm  Show Profile   Check Numismat's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Numismat to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I purchased it at a local auction (it was cheap). More as a curiosity than anything else. I'm not familiar enough with these to recognize the atrocious calligraphy as you said. I did recognize the patina as being "antiqued" rather than actually antique :)
Pillar of the Community
United States
643 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  2:58 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add schmidty to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
This is the great part about this site. As Mika mentioned, we have human translators at our disposal all the time on CCF. I think the fact that our community is world-wide is one of the best things about CCF.
Pillar of the Community
United States
1450 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  4:17 pm  Show Profile   Check Numismat's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Numismat to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
^ Like (this site does not have a "like" button).
Edited by Numismat
01/11/2017 4:17 pm
Valued Member
United States
456 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  4:33 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Albert to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Google can translate from a picture. There are online dictionaries where you actually draw the character then pick whatever match comes up. Copy that character and paste it into Google Translate and it often confirms and tells you the word. Or at least points you into the right direction. When you draw the character into the other mentioned online dictionary, be careful how you draw. You will get about 12 or 16 or 20 possibles based on how well you did or did not draw. Select the closest match that makes sense to you and go from there.
Pillar of the Community
United States
1450 Posts
 Posted 01/11/2017  6:14 pm  Show Profile   Check Numismat's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Numismat to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks Albert, I had no idea that option existed :)
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