Question: Could you please tell me about a five cent piece from Hong Kong circa 1900?
The British have had a presence in Hong Kong since 1839 and a formal lease for 99 years was signed in 1898. A characteristic of Hong Kong coins under British rule is that the legends are in Chinese and English and always feature the current British Monarch on one side of the coin. The monetary system is really an adaptation of the Chinese and translates as:
- 10 mils or Wen, Ch’ien=1 cent or Hsien
- 10 cents= 1 Chiao
- 100 cent or 10 Chiao=1 Dollar or Yuan
If your coin is dated 1900 or 1901 it still would have the head of Queen Victoria. If it dated 1903 (there is no 1902 5c) it would have a portrait of her son, King Edward VII. The value is nominal in most grades, though real gem condition examples are scarce.