China 1989 12 oz Silver Snake

100 Yuan Proof Coin

About the China 1989 12 oz Silver Snake 100 Yuan Proof Coin

The coin shown above is a 99.9% pure, silver, 12 ounce coin bearing the denomination of 100 yuan. It is one in a series of lunar coins released by the Shanghai Mint from the years of 1988 to 1999. This coin was released in the Year of the Snake, 1989. It shows an image of a serene snake on the reverse face, and an image of the famed Shanghai Pass. All of the coins in the 12 ounce silver and gold series of the lunar coins bear similarly famed images of Chinese architecture. In 1989, 400 of these coins were produced.

On the obverse face of this coin, one can see the words, “The People’s Republic of China,” in Chinese characters. Below this inscription appears the Shanhai Pass. The Pass is located in eastern China, where the Great Wall ends at the Pacific Ocean. In dynastic China, the passes on the Great Wall served as military stations. For centuries, the Shanhai pass protected the border between Northeast and Central China. Below the wall is the year in which the coin was released, 1989.

On the reverse face is a replica of a painting by Qi Baishi, who was renowned for his playful brushstrokes and use of watercolor. “Snake Draft” is a painting that shows a realistic snake making its way by a patch of grass. The snake is encircled by a set of smaller images. These images depict a snake overtaking around a turtle. The face value of the coin, 100 yuan, is shown beneath the snake on the bottom of the obverse face.

In Chinese culture, the snake is known to be wise and aware. Those born in the Year of the Snake are seen to be strong speakers, but may be reserved or quiet in terms of personality. Because of the snake’s association with intelligence, those who are born in the Year of the Snake are said to be critical thinkers and schemers, capable of a high level of analysis.

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