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Important Antique Chinese Export Lacquer Tea Caddy decorated with Chinese Coins Circa 1900.

Tabulation of the coins  depicted with the actual coins and Emperors

Please click on images to enlarge |  slide show  | thumbnail index | smaller images with description

 

Description:
Ref: 663TC http://hygra.com/box/663TC 
    Important high quality Chinese Export Lacquer Tea Chest of  decorated with scenes which are significant both in trading terms and in Sino-European relations and art.   
    The lacquer work on the top is raised;  it has been built up slowly layer by layer. 
    The scenes: The orchestration of activity reflects the descriptions of gardens with islands  and water where business as well as pleasure was the natural way of life. 
    For the Chinese water is lucky, as most business transactions took place near rivers which were also used for transporting commodities.   
    The association of luck with water is still strong today.  The painting is in two colours of gold is executed with mastery of art of the art of brush stroke:  The traders are depicted with a minimum of of lines.
    The cultured formal Chinese traders  are toing and froing from the focal point which appears to be a table at which some important robed figures are gathered. The impression given is of negotiation rather than festivity. 
    The most unusual feature of the decoration is the border which features Chinese coins interwoven with bamboo  and flowers on the top. The coins bear the reign titles of Ming and Qing emperors.

The cash coins depicted include those of  The Jiaqing Emperor, Hong Xiuquan, Qing Dynasty, Taiping, The Prince of Tang, The Qianlong Emperor, The Hongwu Emperor, Taiping Tianguo, The Yongle Emperor, The Daoguang Emperor, The Guangxu Emperor,  The Hongwu Emperor, The Yongzheng Emperor, Ming Ming, The Kangxi Emperor, The Wanli Emperor and the last Emperor Puyi.  

As Canton was not under the control of the Taiping,
太平, the inclusion of this coin strikes a very rare bold seditious note, perhaps. It must have been inserted in honor of the commissioning client. 
Coins in this context must be symbolic of the wealth generated through trade. The "bamboo", a richly significant oriental motif, is meaningful here, in its quality as a  homonym with the Chinese word "to wish".
Inside there is a hinged pewter tea container. The top has engraved depictions of the Immortals.

The quality of work is usually  associated with Chinese  lacquer exported in the early 19th
Century. The presence of some of the coins of the last Emperor's indicates that the tea caddy was made at the end of the 19th Century.   

Puyi's  宣統 abdication in 1912 marked the end of millennia of dynastic rule in China and thus he is known throughout the world by the sobriquet , nickname, "The Last Emperor" of China. 

Origin: China;  Circa: 1900; Materials: lacquer on wood:  Pewter Liner. 

Size: 28 cm wide by 20  cm by  16 cm:  11.1 inches wide by  7.9 inches by  6.3  inches.

Condition: good overall; working lock and key;  some shrinkage to top with slight losses: see images

Request current  list of available sewing boxes with prices.
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boxes@hygra.com

Enlarge Picture

Thanks to David Tomsett  (Cathaytrader) who helped me to recognize some of the coins. 

Please click on images to enlarge |  slide show  | thumbnail index |

http://www.calgarycoin.com/reference/china/china8.htm#ching 

 

FRONT 12 coins,  clockwise from top left

The orchestration of activity reflects the descriptions of gardens with islands  and water where business as well as pleasure was the natural way of life.

1<font >
        嘉 慶</font>

The Jiaqing Emperor

嘉 慶

 (Chinese: 嘉慶帝; pinyin: Jiāqngd;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki
/Jiaqing_Emperor

1796-1820

 

 

? ?? ??????????.jpg

 

2

 Ning and  Manchurian script 

寕 Ning = peace 

 

 

 

NING MINT

 

3紹武

The Prince of Tang

紹 武

 (唐王, ?-1647) reigned as the Shaowu (紹武) Emperor of the Southern Ming dynasty from 1646-1647. His era name means "Martial thread". His personal name was Zhu Yuyu (朱聿ਮ?;[1] pinyin: Zhū Yyue).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/

Zhu_Yuyue,_Prince_of_Tang

 

 



lung-wu at top

rather than shao-wu

 

4

Translates to "Fountain Head of Currency"

Manchurian script 

 

5乾隆

The Qianlong Emperor

乾 隆

 (Mandarin pronunciation: [tɕʰi̯ɛ̌n lu̯ə̌ŋ tɨ̂]) (Chinese: 乾隆帝; pinyin: Qinlngd;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qianlong_Emperor

 

QianlongEmperor-coin.jpg

 

6

Translates to "Fountain Head of Currency"

Manchurian script 

Translates to "Peking Board of Revenue"

See:
uri.edu/artsci/his/mua/
teaching/chinese-coin-exercise.pdf
 

 

7

The Hongwu Emperor (Chinese: 洪 武

; WadeGiles: Hung-wu Ti; 21 October 1328 24 June 1398), known variably by his given name Zhu Yuanzhang (Chinese: 朱元璋; WadeGiles: Chu Yuan-chang) and by his temple name Taizu of Ming (Chinese: 明太祖; literally "Great Ancestor of Ming"), was the founder and first emperor of the Ming Dynasty of China. His era name, Hongwu, means "vastly martial".

http://en.wikipedia.org/

wiki/Hongwu_Emperor

 

kon won chung bo

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.hkartclub.com/coin

/chinesecash/hongwu_obvd.jpg 

???.jpg

 

8

Bai =100

Fu =happiness, blessings

 

9

The Qianlong Emperor (Mandarin pronunciation: [tɕʰi̯ɛ̌n lu̯ə̌ŋ tɨ̂]) (Chinese:

; pinyin: Qinlngd;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qianlong_Emperor

Ta-tung Mint

 

 

 

Qianlong Emperor-coin.jpg

 

10

Manchurian script 

 

 

11

Taiping Tianguo or 

Tai Ping Tian Guo (simplified Chinese: 

太 平

天国; traditional Chinese: 太平天國; pinyin: Ti Png Tiān Gu

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiping_Tianguo

See also:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiping_Rebellion

 

Hong Xiuquan led the Taiping Rebellion against the Qing Dynasty, establishing the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom over varying portions of southern China, with himself as the "Heavenly King" and self-proclaimed brother of Jesus Christ.

see: wikipedia.org/wiki/
Hong_Xiuquan
 

 

12

Dong and  Manchurian script 

 東 Dong = East

 

 

 

 

 

SIDE-2- 10 coins,  clockwise from top left

1

Chang ? Ya? and  Manchurian  script 

雅 Ya = Refined or excellent 

 

2

 

wrong

at bottom character = Yong =everlasting  

The Yongle Emperor (Traditional Chinese

永樂

Simplified Chinese: 永乐; pinyin: Yǒngl; Wade-Giles: Yung-lo; IPA: [jʊ̀ŋlɤ̂]) (2 May 1360 12 August 1424), born Zhu Di (Chu Ti), was the third emperor of the Ming Dynasty of China from 1402 to 1424. His Chinese era name Yongle means "Perpetual Happiness".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yongle_Emperor 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    YongleEmperor.JPG

 

3

Manchurian  script 

 

4

 

The Daoguang Emperor (Chinese

道光

, pinyin: Doguāngd, Wade-Giles: Tao-kuang; Manchu: ᡩᠣᡵᠣ ᡝᠯᡩᡝᠩᡤᡝ, Doro Eldengge Hūwangdi; 16 September 1782 25

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/

wiki/Daoguang_Emperor

 

 

5

寕 Ning = peace 

NING MINT

 

6

This must be readable!

The vertical characters read

仁  Ren = benevolence 

YI; 

These are key concepts in Confucian thought:  Ren Yi =righteousness

The horizontal: Zhi (Je)  Knowledge

 Li= ritual etiquette  

 

 

 

7

pronounced Zi can mean character as in Chinese character or a child!

山 Shan  = mountain

 

8

The Guangxu Emperor

光 緒

 (14 August 1871 14 November 1908), born Zaitian of the Manchu Aisin Gioro clan, was the eleventh emperor of the Qing Dynasty, and the ninth Qing emperor to rule over China. His reign lasted from 1875 to 1908, but in practice he ruled, under Empress Dowager Cixi's influence, only from 1889 to 1898. He initiated the Hundred Days' Reform, but was abruptly stopped when Cixi launched a coup in 1898, after which he was put under house arrest until his death. His regnal name means "glorious succession".
http://en.wikipedia.org/

wiki/Guangxu_Emperor 

 

Asset

http://museumvictoria.com.au/collections/

items/1346116/coin-cash-emperor-kuang

-hsu-qing-dynasty-china-circa-1890

Cash, Issued by Emperor: Khuang-hsu, Hupeh Province, China, 1875-1908

 

9

Manchurian  script

 

10

Puyi  

宣 統

(7 February 1906 17 October 1967), of the Manchu Aisin Gioro clan, was the last Emperor of China,

When he ruled as Emperor of the Qing Dynasty from 1908 to 1912 and during his brief restoration in 1917, Puyi's era name was Xuantong, so he was known as the Xuantong Emperor (simplified Chinese: 宣统皇帝; traditional Chinese: 宣統皇帝; pinyin: Xuāntǒng Hungd) during those two periods of time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puyi 

 

 

http://www.britishmuseum.org/
research/collection_online/
collection_object_details/
collection_image_
gallery.aspx?assetId=
300385&objectId=3002830&partId=1

  • Production date: 1909-1911
  • Production place: Beijing

 

Aisin-Gioro Puyi 01.jpg

 

 

Please click on images to enlarge |  slide show  | thumbnail index |

BACK 12 coins,  clockwise from top left

1

The Daoguang Emperor

道 光

 (Chinese: 道光, pinyin: Doguāngd, Wade-Giles: Tao-kuang; Manchu: ᡩᠣᡵᠣ ᡝᠯᡩᡝᠩᡤᡝ, Doro Eldengge Hūwangdi; 16 September 1782 25

http://en.wikipedia.org/

wiki/Daoguang_Emperor

 

 

 

2

fushi wellbeing

富士

A  successful scholar 

 

3

The Hongwu Emperor (Chinese

洪 武

; WadeGiles: Hung-wu Ti; 21 October 1328 24 June 1398), known variably by his given name Zhu Yuanzhang (Chinese: 朱元璋; WadeGiles: Chu Yuan-chang) and by his temple name Taizu of Ming (Chinese: 明太祖; literally "Great Ancestor of Ming"), was the founder and first emperor of the Ming Dynasty of China. His era name, Hongwu, means "vastly martial".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hongwu_Emperor 

 

Copper coin. Hongwu1.jpg

 

4

Manchurian script and 

河   he = a river

 

 

5

The Yongzheng Emperor (Chinese

雍 正

; pinyin: yōngzhngd; WadeGiles: Yung Cheng Ti, Manchu: ᡥᡡᠸᠠᠯᡳᠶᠠᠰᡠᠨ ᡨᠣᠪ, Hūwaliyasun Tob hūwangdi, Mongolian:Nairalt Tv Khaan; 13 December 1678 8 October 1735), born Yinzhen (Chinese: 胤禛; pinyin: ynzhēn ; Manchu language: ᡳᠨ ᠵᡝᠨ ; Mllendorff transliteration: in jen),

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
Yongzheng_Emperor

 

 

Yung Cheng CASH
http://www.calgarycoin.com/reference

/china/china8.htm#yung cheng

 

 

 

6

Manchurian script and

Ning = peace 

NING MINT

 

7
The Prince of Tang (唐王, ?-1647) reigned as the Shaowu (

紹 武

) Emperor of the Southern Ming dynasty from 1646-1647. His era name means "Martial thread". His personal name was Zhu Yuyu (朱聿ਮ?;[1] pinyin: Zhū Yyue).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki
/Zhu_Yuyue,_Prince_of_Tang

 

 

 

see above

the character is the same.

 

 

 

 

8

Gua and Manchurian Script

挂  Gua

to hang up, to hitch, to suspend, to hang, hang up

 

9

The Daoguang Emperor

道 光

  (Chinese: 道光, pinyin: Doguāngd, Wade-Giles: Tao-kuang; Manchu: ᡩᠣᡵᠣ ᡝᠯᡩᡝᠩᡤᡝ, Doro Eldengge Hūwangdi; 16 September 1782 25

http://en.wikipedia.org/

wiki/Daoguang_Emperor

 

 

 

 

10

Manchurian script

Reverse side of Qing (Ch'ing) Dynasty qian long
                  tong bao cash coin cast at Board of Works mint

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Emperor Gao Zong ruled under the reign title Qian Long from 1736 to 1795.  He abdicated the throne after sixty years in favor of his son Jia Qing as a sign of respect to not reign longer that his grandfather Kang Xi.

http://primaltrek.com/chinesecoins.html 

 

 

11

Ming Ming

here has the inscription Minh Mang Thong Bao (Chinese: ming ming tong bao 明命通宝) which was used on coins cast during the reign (1820-1840) of King Nguyen Thanh To of the Nguyen Dynasty.

http://primaltrek.com/blog

/2011/11/29/the-huainanzi-and-vietnamese-coins/ 

 

 

12

Chang  + Manchurian script

Chang = Initiative to sing!

 

 

TOP

 14 coins,  clockwise from top left

1

康 熙 

The Kangxi Emperor (Kang-hsi Emperor; Chinese: 康熙帝; pinyin: Kāngxī D; WadeGiles: K'ang1-hsi1 Ti4; temple name: Shengzu (Sheng-tsu; Chinese: 聖祖; which means "The Holy Lord"); Manchu: elhe taifin hūwangdi; Mongolian: Enkh Amgalan Khaan; 4 May 1654  20 December 1722) was the fourth emperor of the Qing Dynasty,[1][2] the first to be born on Chinese soil south of the Pass (Beijing) and the second Qing emperor to rule over China proper, from 1661 to 1722.

 

Lohan Kangxi coin obverse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://primaltrek.com/
charmfeatures.html
 

http://en.wikipedia.org/
wiki/Kangxi_Emperor
 

 

 

2

 

This must be readable!

 

3

 

This must be readable!

 

4

Manchurian script

 

5

 

This must be readable!

 

6

Manchurian script

 

7

 

This must be readable!

 

8

 Xuan li

 

9

The Yongzheng Emperor (Chinese

雍 正

; pinyin: yōngzhngd; WadeGiles: Yung Cheng Ti, Manchu: ᡥᡡᠸᠠᠯᡳᠶᠠᠰᡠᠨ ᡨᠣᠪ, Hūwaliyasun Tob hūwangdi, Mongolian:Nairalt Tv Khaan; 13 December 1678 8 October 1735), born Yinzhen (Chinese: 胤禛; pinyin: ynzhēn ; Manchu language: ᡳᠨ ᠵᡝᠨ ; Mllendorff transliteration: in jen),

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yongzheng_Emperor

 

 

10

The Wanli Emperor (simplified Chinese: 万历; traditional Chinese:

  萬 曆

; pinyin: Wnl; WadeGiles: Wan-li) (4 September 1563 18 August 1620) was emperor of China (Ming dynasty) between 1572 and 1620. His era name means "Ten thousand calendars". Born Zhu Yijun, he was the Longqing Emperor's third son. His rule of forty-eight years was the longest in the Ming dynasty and it witnessed the steady decline of the dynasty.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wanli_Emperor 

 

???.jpg

 

11

 

    Ning and  Manchurian script 

Ning = peace 

 

 

12

Manchurian script

 

13

This must be readable!

 

14

Manchurian script +

 

Please click on images to enlarge |  slide show  | thumbnail index |

 

SIDE-1- 10 coins,  clockwise from top left

1

雅 Ya  to flash, to show.

and Manchurian script

 

2

Kuang Yong

and this means!

 

3

Manchurian  script

 

4

The Daoguang Emperor

道 光

  (Chinese: 道光, pinyin: Doguāngd, Wade-Giles: Tao-kuang; Manchu: ᡩᠣᡵᠣ ᡝᠯᡩᡝᠩᡤᡝ, Doro Eldengge Hūwangdi; 16 September 1782 25

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/

wiki/Daoguang_Emperor

 

 

5

Ning and Manchurian script

    Ning and  Manchurian script 

寕 Ning = peace 

 

 

6

仁  Ren yi
Benevolence, virtue,
Fu-Zhi Knowledge
Abundant knowledge Fu = abundant
This does not appear to be a Reign Mark

 

 

7

Shan ZI

上 Shang = above

子 zi  = son

 

8

The Guangxu Emperor

Traditional Chinese  

 帝

 (14 August 1871 14 November 1908), born Zaitian of the Manchu Aisin Gioro clan, was the eleventh emperor of the Qing Dynasty, and the ninth Qing emperor to rule over China. His reign lasted from 1875 to 1908, but in practice he ruled, under Empress Dowager Cixi's influence, only from 1889 to 1898. He initiated the Hundred Days' Reform, but was abruptly stopped when Cixi launched a coup in 1898, after which he was put under house arrest until his death. His regnal name means "glorious succession".

Simplified Chinese 光绪帝

Asset

http://museumvictoria.com.au/collections/

items/1346116/coin-cash-emperor-kuang

-hsu-qing-dynasty-china-circa-1890

Cash, Issued by Emperor: Khuang-hsu, Hupeh Province, China, 1875-1908

 

 

9

Manchurian script

 

10

Puyi (7 February 1906 17 October 1967), of the Manchu Aisin Gioro clan, was the last Emperor of China,When he ruled as Emperor of the Qing Dynasty from 1908 to 1912 and during his brief restoration in 1917, Puyi's era name was Xuantong, so he was known as the Xuantong Emperor (simplified Chinese: 宣统皇帝; traditional Chinese: 宣統皇帝; pinyin: Xuāntǒng Hungd) during those two periods of time.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puyi

hsuan tung cash
Aisin-Gioro Puyi 01.jpg

 

All text and images and linked images are 1999-2014 Antigone Clarke and Joseph O'Kelly. If you require any further information on permitted use, or a licence to republish any material, email us at copyright@hygra.com