East Asian

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Gold 10 ryo oban, Kyoto (Japan), 1725–1735. 1902.8.1

The East Asian Department includes coins and currency of China, Korea, Japan, and Vietnam from the early use of cowries, spades, and knives in China during the Zhou Dynasty up to the present. The Society’s East Asian collection is one of the world’s largest, with around 50,000 objects. Areas of particular strength include ancient China, Edo-period Japan, and Joseon-period Korea. At present, there is no expert curator for the collection, but volunteer work and the computer cataloging of the collection continue.