These old coins from China are quite interesting. The dragon is one of the favorite patterns. Conversion of the monetary units goes like this:
3.6 candareens = 5 cents
7.2 candareens = 10 cents
1 mace and 4.4 candareens = 20 cents
3 mace and 6 candareens = 50 cents
7 mace and 2 candareens = 1 dollar
The value of these coins is quite high, especially in well preserved condition. Our picture comes from ChinaRareCoin.com where this 1 dollar coin is on sale for $3000 US dollars. The primary reason for this high price is the condition of the coin. It is in Mint State 62, which is a technical numismatic (coin collector) term for one level of a fully uncirculated coin.
CoinQuest thanks ChinaRareCoin for use of their coin image.
Many of today's catalogs are less generous with the values they quote for these coins. According to Anthony LLano, owner of ChinaRareCoin,
'This type of field is new even for the Chinese. As the early Chinese coin market gets hot, people are starting to realize how few of these coins there are. This is why the price is going up. This process will happen naturally because of the low availability of the coins.'
All in all, like many things Chinese, the field of Chinese coin collecting is new and exciting. We have taken our best shot at representative values below.
5 CENTS (3.6 candareens)
average circulated: $250
well preserved: $400
fully uncirculated: $1000
10 CENTS (7.2 candareens)
average circulated: $20
well preserved: $40
fully uncirculated: $140
20 CENTS (1 mace and 4.4 candareens)
average circulated: $25
well preserved: $50
fully uncirculated: $120
50 CENTS (3 mace and 6 candareens)
average circulated: $200
well preserved: $650
fully uncirculated: $1400
1 DOLLAR (7 mace and 2 candareens)
average circulated: $150
well preserved: $800
fully uncirculated: $2550
You have to watch out for countefeits on all valuable coins, and coins from China are particularly susceptable to fakes.
Use our Important Terminology page to convert the catalog values above to actual values.