Sandy J. writes: We have run across this coin. We have no clue anything about it. Any information you could give us would be appreciated: Where is it from, exactly what is it, how old is it, how much is it worth? Thanks, Sandy
You have a Republic of China Year 10 (1921) Dollar (Yuan) 7 characters above head. These coins are known as Yuan Shih-kai dollars. They were struck not only in 1921 but for years afterwards with the same date each year until 1929 and later by the Chinese Communists for use in Tibet in the 1950’s. It is estimated that more than 750 million 1921 Yuan Shih-kai dollars were struck.
To read the Chinese inscription note that your coin has 7 characters above the head. Reading from left to right the second character is Nien or year. The third character is the number “10” for the tenth year of the Republic (1921). The remaining characters are “Chung Hua Min Kuo” or Republic of China. The upright orientation of the reverse is with the ribbon bow at bottom. The two characters are the denomination translated as “One Yuan”.
There are two varieties of the year 10 dollar. Based on the condition of the coin in your photo, these are the approximate values:
Year 10 normal edge reeding: $5.
Year 10 oblique edge reeding: $10.