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Research Coins: Feature Auction

CNG 111, Lot: 921. Estimate $300.
Sold for $425. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CHINA, Tàipíng Rebellion. AD 1851-1864. Æ Wen (23mm, 3.32 g, 12h). Uncertain mint. Cast circa 1861-1864. Tai Ping Tian Guo (Taiping Heavenly Kingdom) in Hànzì characters / Sheng bao (Sacred currency) in Hànzì characters. Hartill 23.18. VF, slightly rough brown patina. Rare.

In the early 1840s, failed civil service candidate Hong Xiuquan read a religous pamphlet given to him by a Protestant missionary. He came to the realization that he was, in fact, Jesus Christ’s Chinese brother, sent by God to rid the nation of the Manchus. Hong studied the Bible, blending it with elements of Daoism and Confucianism, developing his own sect called the God Worshipping Society. By 1851 the Society was in open rebellion against the Manchu Qīng dynasty. Hong declared a new dynasty, the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, and took for himself the title Heavenly King. The Taipings would successfully resist the central government for over thirteen years, at times even capturing the Qīng capital at Běijīng. The Taiping Rebellion would result in an estimated 20-70 million casualties, making it one of the bloodiest conflicts in world history.