China 1992 Kilo Gold Seismograph

2000 Yuan Proof Coin

About the China 1992 Kilo Gold Seismograph 2000 Yuan Proof Coin

Pictured above is one of thirty coins making up series issued by the People's Bank of China in 1992 commemorating scientific and technical inventions and discoveries of ancient China.  Of the thirty coins, seven are gold, eighteen are silver, and five are platinum.  The entire series comprises five sub-sets featuring five different designs.

This coin is the 1kg gold coin of the series featuring the Zhang Heng's invention of the seismograph.  It is a proof coin of 99.9% fineness and a denomination of 2000 yuan.  It measures 100mm in diameter and was struck at the Shenyang mint with a mintage of just 10 pieces.

Featured on the reverse face is a depiction of Zhang Heng's seismograph and a group of three scientists.  Zhang Heng (78-139 AD) was a Eastern Han Dynasty (25-220 AD) scholar, poet, inventor, and scientist.  His invention of the seismograph in 132 AD was able to determine the direction of the epicentre of an earthquake from a distance of 500km.   Below the image of the seismograph appears the denomination, 2000 yuan.  The top left corner of the face bears the inscription giving the date of the invention in Chinese characters.  It reads: “Seismograph 2nd Century AD”.

Featured on the obverse face is a picture of the Great Wall above which is the inscription in Chinese: “The People's Republic of China”.  Below the image is the year of issue, 1992.  Construction began on the Great Wall in 220 BC following the unification of China in 221 BC.  It has been rebuilt, modified, and extended many times since, particularly during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).  The Great Wall as it stands today represents one of the greatest architectural and engineering feats achieved by the Chinese throughout history.

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