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Rare China Silver Dollar Pattern for sale L&M-937 1912 Bearded Yuan Shih Kai

Rare China Silver Dollar Pattern for sale L&M-937 1912 Bearded Yuan Shih Kai (the only one graded)

Coming up in Stacks Auction Nov30th, 2022:


Intriguing Yuan Shih-kai Presidential Pattern

CHINA. "Big Beard" Commemorative Silver Dollar Pattern, ND (1912). Suchow Mint. NGC AU-55.

L&M-937; K-B54 (plate coin); WS-0117 (rarity: five stars); Wenchao-1099 (rarity: four stars). Being the only certified example on either the NGC or PCGS population reports, this EXTREMELY RARE and highly desirable issue, clearly struck in limited quantities, seldom appears on the market and has very few examples known. The strike is quite bold, with strong details and signs of being gently handled primarily contained to the high points and exposed areas. The surfaces display a somewhat muted argent coloration combined with rich mottled slate and russet patination throughout. Close inspection of the reverse reveals evidence of double striking and a slight rotation, offering unique characteristics to this piece and making identification and plate matching a rather easy venture. Great consideration should be given for this tremendous offering, as numismatic rarities of this caliber are seldom encountered.

The obverse depicts the bearded bust of Yuan Shih-kai within solid border and the legend "Da Zong Tong Xiao Xiang" (Presidential Portrait), with a wreath below. The iconography on the reverse is composed of two crossed flags (the Five-Colored Flag of the Republic of China and the Iron Blood Eighteen-star flag of the Wuchang Uprising), with the vertical legend "Kai Guo Ji Nian" (Commemoration of the founding of the Country).

Perhaps one of the rarest early Republican issues known, this short-lived commemorative has generated much interest from collectors and scholars for more than 100 years. According to A. M. Tracey Woodward, a previous owner of this piece, in his article published in "The China Journal" February 1931 he discusses several interesting contemporary accounts from his dear friend Dr. John Abner Snell who lived and worked in Suchow. Dr. Snell reported that the city had two mints, one mint was exclusively for producing copper coins and was located outside the city walls while the other was specifically for silver issues situated on the interior, both closed in 1906. According to Dr. Snell late in 1911 the silver mint went back into production ultimately closing a few months later in early 1912. All the minting equipment was dismantled and transferred to the Nanking mint. Woodward was aware of two different types of Yuan Shih-kai patterns struck during this time though the quantity of each is unknown. Obviously, these designs never went into full production and were abandoned leaving many questions for future numismatists.

Another aspect that should be taken into consideration about whom is depicted on this issue was the monumental research undergone by Mr. Ma Chuande, based on his father's research Mr. Ma Dingxiang, subsequently published in the June 21, 1993 edition of World Coin News, Zhongguo Qianbi (China Numismatics) 1993 # 3 and in Qianbi Bolun 1995 #3. Ma was able to uncover images of a bearded Yuan Shih-kai from around 1912 whose resemblance was uncanny and is without doubt the inspiration of this issue.

Estimate: $75,000 - $125,000.

Provenance: Ex: A. M. Tracey Woodward Collection (Schulman - 4/1951) Lot # 2763.

Plated in "Illustrated Catalog of Chinese Coins" by Eduard Kann.

Click here for certification details from NGC.



NGC 及 PCGS 評鑒中唯一獲評。極為罕見,廣受追捧的版別。鑄額有限,存世極少,鮮少於市場露面。鑄打不失深峻,細節分明,經受痕跡柔和,集中在高鑄處及底板。幣面呈較暗的灰色,與濃郁的點狀石板灰及紅褐色包漿交織。仔細檢閲可見反面有複打痕跡及輕微旋轉,更添特色,輕易便能辨認出是圖版幣。 此枚實屬稀世奇珍,實力渾厚的藏家不能錯過。


p>正面為蓄有鬍鬚的袁世凱半身像,實心圈環繞,上有銘文"大總統肖像",下有花環。反面倆旗幟交叉(中國民國五色旗及武昌起義的鐵血十八星旗),豎直銘文"開國紀念"。或是早期民國錢幣中最為罕見的版別之一。流傳時間雖短,百多年來卻引來藏家與學者前赴後繼的關注。A.M. Tracey Woodward 曾是此幣的藏家,其於 1831 年 2 月的 The China Journal 中曾刊登一篇文章,探討從曾在蘇州生活的摯友 John Abner Snell 醫生處聽來的數個相關近代傳聞。 據 Snell 醫生所述,蘇州有兩座造幣厰,一座位於城墻之外,僅鑄造銅幣;而另一座則在城内,負責鑄造銀幣。兩座造幣厰均於 1906 年結業。Snell 醫生憶述銀幣造幣厰於 1911 年末重新開始營業,但僅持續數月,便於 1912 年初便再次關閉。所有造幣設備均被拆除並移送至南京造幣厰。據 Woodward 所知,當時的袁世凱樣幣有兩個版別,但各自的鑄額未明。顯然,這些設計並未完全投入生產便被束之高閣,為後世錢幣學家留下諸多謎團。


p>另一值得考究的是此版所使用的人像。馬傳德先生曾進行大量資料搜集,再結合其父馬定祥先生的研究,於 1993 年 6 月 21 日出版1993 #3《世界錢幣時訊 中國錢幣》及 1995 #3《錢幣博論》。馬先生尋獲 1912 蓄鬍子的袁世凱相片,其肖像與此版完一致,足見是此版設計的靈感來源。

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