Large Silver 8 Zhu Ban Liang 2 Swastikas mark Han Dynasty Empress LuZhi, 186 BC
Swastikas above and below!
Material: Solid fine Silver
Weight: 5.2 grams; Size: 29.7 mm
Empress L?Zhi, 8 Zhu Ban Liang, Swastika above and below!
Obv: Ban Liang, Swastikas above and below, which as well as being is a very old Asian good luck symbol
In 186 BC, the official coin weight was reduced to 8 zhu.
The swastika is a very old Asian symbol.
L?Zhi (241?80 BC), courtesy name Exu (Chinese: 娥姁), commonly known as Empress L?(simplified Chinese: 吕后; traditional Chinese: 呂后; pinyin: Lǚ H騯) and Empress Dowager L?(simplified Chinese: 吕太后; traditional Chinese: 呂太后; pinyin: Lǚ T鄆h騯), or formally Empress Gao of Han (simplified Chinese: 汉高后; traditional Chinese: 漢高后; pinyin: H鄋 Gāo H騯), was the empress consort of Emperor Gaozu, the founder and first ruler of the Han Dynasty. They had two known children, Liu Ying (later Emperor Hui of Han) and Princess Yuan of Lu. L?Zhi was the first woman to assume the title Empress of China. After Emperor Gaozu's death, she was honoured as Empress Dowager and later as Grand Empress Dowager (太皇太后) during the short reigns of Emperor Hui and his successors Liu Gong (Emperor Qianshao) and Liu Hong (Emperor Houshao).
Ban Liang coins
The Ban Liang coins take their name from their two character inscription Ban Liang(Chinese: 半兩; pinyin: b鄋 liǎng), which means half a liang. The liang, the Chinese ounce, consisted of 24 zhu (Chinese: 銖; pinyin: zhū), and was the equivalent of about 16 grams. Thus the original Ban Liang weighed the equivalent of 12 zhu - 8 grams; however, it kept this inscription even when its weight was later reduced. This means that Ban Liangs are found in a great variety of sizes and calligraphic styles, all with the same inscription, which are difficult to classify and to date exactly, especially those of unofficial or local manufacture.
These coins were traditionally associated with Qin Shi Huang Di, the first Chinese Emperor, who united China in 221 BC. The History of Han says: 揥hen Qin united the world, it made two sorts of currency: that of yellow gold, which was called yi and was the currency of the higher class; and that of bronze, which was similar in quality to the coins of Zhou, but bore an inscription saying Half Ounce, and was equal in weight to its inscription.?/font>
Archaeological evidence now shows that the Ban Liang was first issued in the Warring States period by the State of Qin, possibly as early as 378 BC. A remarkable find was some bamboo tablets amongst which were found regulations (drawn up before 242 BC) concerning metal and cloth money. A thousand coins, good and bad mixed, were to be placed in pen (baskets or jars) and sealed with the Seal of the Director. At Zhangpu in Shaanxi, just such a sealed jar, containing 1,000 Ban Liang of various weights and sizes, was discovered. 7 Ban Liang were found in a tomb datable to 306 BC. At the beginning of the Western Han Dynasty, c. 200 BC, the people were allowed to cast small light coins known as yu jia (Chinese: 榆莢; pinyin: y?ji?, 揺lm seed? coins, as the heavy Qin coins were inconvenient. In 186 BC, the official coin weight was reduced to 8 zhu, and in 182 BC, a wu fen (Chinese: 五分; pinyin: wǔ fēn) (5 parts) coin was issued ?this is taken to be 5 parts of a Ban Liang, i.e. 2.4 zhu. In 175 BC, the weight was set at 4 zhu. Private minting was permitted again, but with strict regulation of the weight and alloy. In 119 BC, the Ban Liang was replaced by the San Zhu, and then the Wu Zhu coin.