World of Coins

Modern Asian coins, pseudo coins and trade tokens => Japan, North and South Korea => Topic started by: Michiel on October 28, 2012, 07:45:01 PM

Title: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on October 28, 2012, 07:45:01 PM
what is the meaning of the symbols? front and back are the same.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on October 28, 2012, 08:38:19 PM
It has to be Japanese rather than Chinese.  The top and bottom letters are the Japanese syllables "so" and "wo" (phonetic value only, no meaning).  RH character is ki = tree; LH is shi = history / chronicles.  However, what it's all supposed to mean when put together is anyone's guess.

Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: akona20 on October 28, 2012, 09:04:13 PM
wo shi = I am
Soki = Soki or an abbreviation of a name
given this is Japanese.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on October 28, 2012, 09:32:18 PM
wo shi = I am
Soki = Soki or an abbreviation of a name
given this is Japanese.

That's mixing languages!  "Wo shi" is Chinese, and uses different characters entirely :-)  It would never be written in the way shown here, trust me.  The letter "wo" here is an objective case marker in modern Japanese, though it had wider uses in the classical form of the language.

Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: akona20 on October 28, 2012, 09:37:12 PM
Yes you are correct however I attempted a guess at your translation.

There may be a regional significance to do with death that I need to check today.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on October 28, 2012, 09:43:47 PM
My Classical Japanese dictionary contains no entries for "so[w]o" written as above, nor anything for "kishi" (assuming a top-bottom-right-left sequence).  Even reading clockwise, so-ki-wo-shi or ki-wo-shi-so makes no sense.

The character for "shi" in the sense of death also is entirely different to the one shown here, so I don't think that's a likely lead (Japanese abounds with homophones borrowed from Chinese, which is exacerbated by the relative absence of tones).

As you noted in a different context recently, we need to proceed on facts rather than suppositions, and the meanings of the individual characters are as I stated in my initial reply.

Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: akona20 on October 28, 2012, 09:52:35 PM
The problem as you know abounds with diffculty in these words and word plays and regionalisation make it diffuclt.

so ki if we take that as a possible combination can be played with in many ways  including meaning in Buddhism an uncertainty or in Okinawa when placed before soba it means from memory "pork soba".

I n and out of context it becomes almost impossible.

In my mind and not quite knowing what it is made from a possible Buddhist charm "I am uncertain" as part of a progression.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on October 28, 2012, 10:10:14 PM
thanks for the help.
I got lost, its not chinese, but youre not also sure about the japanese origin of this piece of metal.  ???

I quite often find this kind of fantasy tokens and every time I wonder why, when, who  :D
Most of the times They look like real cash coins, but this was just to strange.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: akona20 on October 28, 2012, 10:14:02 PM
I would view Translateltd descriptions as more accurate than mine.

In parts of Japan and China I have frequently wondered about the translation of various characters from area to area, temple to temple etc.

It is a little like reading bptism records in England across the ages, is that really what that writing says is an expression often heard.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on October 28, 2012, 11:12:00 PM

I got lost, its not chinese, but youre not also sure about the japanese origin of this piece of metal.  ???


Just to summarise: the top and bottom letters are exclusively Japanese.  There can be no doubt about that.  We just don't know what they are supposed to mean in this context.

So the language is Japanese and it was presumably made in Japan (though manufacture by expatriate Japanese living somewhere else is still a small possibility!)

Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Figleaf on October 28, 2012, 11:35:15 PM
History or chronicles remind me of anime and manga and from there to a cosplay (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosplay) accessory. HTH.

Peter
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: FosseWay on October 29, 2012, 08:54:02 AM
Merchandise produced in Japan and China abounds in 'English' words, or just combinations of Latin letters, that have been used purely as a design feature, and were probably introduced into the design by someone who speaks no English just to give a feeling of exotic foreign-ness.

The same no doubt occurs the other way round, with Western designers including random Chinese or Japanese (or both at once) characters to make an object look 'authentically oriental'. Could this be an example of the latter? Some form of gaming counter to be used in a Far Eastern context, where it's necessary for it to look authentic but no-one will be any the wiser if what's actually written there is nonsense?
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on October 29, 2012, 09:24:55 AM

The same no doubt occurs the other way round, with Western designers including random Chinese or Japanese (or both at once) characters to make an object look 'authentically oriental'. Could this be an example of the latter?


My only argument against this is that the characters are too good - they haven't been copied by a furriner, and don't quite look like a machine-generated font.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: akona20 on October 29, 2012, 09:26:49 AM
Martin is correct in this, that is the key to the question.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on October 29, 2012, 09:37:06 AM
Its clear for me.
I\ll put it with all the rest of the oriental fantasy tokens and catalog it  "made in japan with oriental symbols on it"  ;D

Thanks for the info and the time spend on this little thing.

Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: akona20 on October 29, 2012, 09:39:17 AM
Wait just a little, one or two others are looking at it and may add something.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on October 29, 2012, 10:03:34 AM
Neozion - you can be more specific than just "oriental symbols", since my initial reply told you what each letter/character was :-)

My guess - and it's only a guess at this stage - is that the characters and syllables relate somehow to a game of chance or fortune-telling, and there may accordingly be other such rings in the series with different, also apparently random, characters and syllables on them.  Examples would need to be found to prove the theory, though.

Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on October 29, 2012, 10:09:24 AM
One thing none of us has actually asked yet: what's it made of, and what's the diameter?  It looks non-metallic from the picture (amber? plastic?)

And are the characters cut into the surface rather than raised?



Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on October 29, 2012, 10:19:45 AM
good question, I dont have it in front of me now, I'll come back on this.


Neozion - you can be more specific than just "oriental symbols", since my initial reply told you what each letter/character was :-)

About the meaning of the symbols, youre quitte right of course. I write on the coinholder by every symbol the meaning of the symbol, here is an example of an coin in my collection.



Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on October 30, 2012, 02:34:26 PM
One thing none of us has actually asked yet: what's it made of, and what's the diameter?  It looks non-metallic from the picture (amber? plastic?)

And are the characters cut into the surface rather than raised?

28 mm, the symbols are cut into the surface and than painted. its made of a kind of metal, better than that i cant make of it :)
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: weepio on November 14, 2012, 03:08:14 PM
I have never seen a piece like this, neither I can find anything on it. But it looks not Chinese to me and Japanese could be possible. I have no idea of what the characters on the coin mean. Where I live we sometimes buy tokens to use as money on bigger events or in a disco or something like that. Maybe this could something like that, I´m not sure what people do in Japan.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on November 15, 2012, 11:15:39 AM
i forgot to mention the weight. Its 8.24 gramms

I think its copper, its not magnetic.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: pingu on November 16, 2012, 01:24:47 AM
Hello,

I have dealt something with the part.
I have no idea, therefore, I have asked in Japan a coin trader.

here his answer:
I have never seen this.
1)  I think this is not a money/coin.  >>  but a local/regional 
money ? >>   I have not seen on auction catalogues.
2)  I can not say nothing on the material  >>  seems to be gold ?  >> 
it is a golden color, but we need an mechanical examination.
3) The letter is japanese and may be from Japan. No information who 
made ? for what ?   >>  no original sample.

--------------------------------------------------------
Hence: the piece is unknown in Japan....
My opinion an imagination amulet. The characters are Japanese, however, The signs are Japanese, but they have no meaning.


Greetings from good old Germany ;)
pingu
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on November 16, 2012, 07:57:07 AM
I dont think its gold. Its 28 mm in diameter and if its gold it would be heavier.

Made an new and better picture. at one symbol the black paint is a little bit gone and I looked closely, the symbols are engine turned. So the token is not casted or struck. The symbols are machined in.
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: translateltd on November 17, 2012, 10:32:43 PM
All good, only it's upside-down now :-)

Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Michiel on November 17, 2012, 10:52:17 PM
All good, only it's upside-down now :-)

martin, you're completly  right. I see it to.
those difficult symbols



Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Chinasmith on January 08, 2013, 11:09:25 AM
I suspect this is some sort of game piece. I've seen a similar one with the word "rabbit" in Chinese. The words probably make no sense by themselves, but are part of some game. Though two of the words are in Chinese, the Japanese language today does retain a certain number of Chinese kanji characters along with the phonetic characters. -
Title: Re: Japanese fantasy token, what are the symbols?
Post by: Figleaf on January 08, 2013, 03:49:53 PM
And, just to add to the murkiness, the rabbit is a sign in the Chinese zodiac.

Peter