Author Topic: South Korea  (Read 395 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline gpimper

  • Meritorious Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 540
South Korea
« on: November 29, 2019, 07:53:19 PM »
Not sure the denomination (100 something) but pretty sure this was pocket change from my time in Pusan.  Not an overly exiting coin.
The Chief...aka Greg

Offline Figleaf

  • Administrator
  • Honorary Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 30 787
Re: South Korea
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2019, 12:51:04 AM »
Let me try to change your mind about that coin. First, you are right. Even when I came to Korea for the first time it wasn't worth much in guilder terms, but poverty and seclusion made it important for the Koreans. Today, your coin is 8 cents in USD terms, or 8 eurocent or 6 Indian rupees.

I came back regularly. Each time, life was significantly better and the country was making fast progress in all respects. In 1962, the coinage, ravaged by war, was stabilised and reformed. This coin came about in 1970. You can easily see it as a symbol of Korean economic achievements in spite of the mismanagement of the country by the military. In 1993, the last military dictator Roh Tae-woo apologised tearfully on TV for his role in the bloody suppression of student demonstrations, announcing a civil government and elections. Where else did that happen?

The characters right and left of the portrait is the denomination, 100 won. The characters are Korean (Hangul), but the Chinese character for Won is the same as the character used in Japan for yen and in China for yuan: 円. The four characters below the bust just say Bank of Korea, which is the Korean central bank, responsible for coins as well as banknotes.

Korea has been occupied by its neighbours, starting with the Mongols and ending with the Japanese and it's not over yet for the North. That's where the portrait on the coin comes in. He is admiral Yi Sun-sin (1545-1598), so you ought to salute him or at least read the page in Wikipedia about his life. His hat, rather than sleeve or shoulder, shows his rank. Admiral Yi fought a number of sea battles against Japanese invaders. He won all of them, never losing even a single ship, so maybe you should salute him twice ;) How's that for a dull coin? ;D

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline gpimper

  • Meritorious Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 540
Re: South Korea
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2019, 04:35:55 AM »
Peter, I don't disparage this coin and I very much aptitiate the history.  Just not one of my favorite as far as looks.  I still like it, though :-)   Two salutes are in order! 
The Chief...aka Greg

Offline Oklahoman

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 90
Re: South Korea
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2019, 06:26:33 PM »
The characters on the coin are actually syllables that are individual letters of a phonetic alphabet that are stacked into syllables.  Loved your description of why this is a neat coin.

Offline Figleaf

  • Administrator
  • Honorary Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 30 787
Re: South Korea
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2019, 09:23:07 AM »
Indeed, the building blocks of Hangul characters are simple characters, formed by a combination of a vowel of a consonant, somewhat like Hiragana. These are usually combined into groups of one, two or three characters. When I was in Korea, I would train by trying to decypher the two combined characters on car license plates. As so many other things, use it or lose it, I forgot what i'd learned then.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline Oklahoman

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 90
Re: South Korea
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2019, 09:30:11 AM »
I used to read signs as they passed the taxi or bus windows.  It was a great time in my life.

Offline Verify-12

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 77
    • Circulation Coins of the Republic of Korea
Re: South Korea
« Reply #6 on: July 06, 2020, 04:19:07 PM »
But you're all missing the most interesting aspect of this coin:

Years ago, a "Mr. Kim," the president of the Korea Minting and Security Printing Corporation (aka The Korean Mint, or KOMSCO) was away from Korea on a business trip overseas. While he was gone, his daughter, Kim Min-ji, was abducted and murdered (and dismembered). Her murderer was never caught.

To appease the ghost of his deceased daughter, the president of the Mint conspired with others to have images of her body parts, and other clues, placed in the designs of the currency being minted. How doing something like this is supposed to appease a ghost, I don't know.

Anyway, you can see the "surreptitious inclusions" of Kim Min-ji's body on several pieces of South Korean coins and currency.

This 100-Won is one of them.
There's supposed to be her head (mutilated and decomposed!) in Admiral Yi's beard there, somewhere.
Maybe this will help you visualize it: Okay, so she's not wearing a yellow shirt on the coin, nor is she wearing black eyeliner and lipstick, but you get the idea.





Offline Figleaf

  • Administrator
  • Honorary Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 30 787
Re: South Korea
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2020, 07:07:45 PM »
Indeed, we missed that. That may be because it's not true. Kim is a very common name in Korea. In fact, there are several people by that name with some name recognition and there is someone called Kim Min-ji working in KOTRA. The story is denied by official sources and comes up when you Google Kim Min-ji and urban legend.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline Verify-12

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 77
    • Circulation Coins of the Republic of Korea
Re: South Korea
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2020, 08:11:29 PM »
Well you didn't have to go and ruin the fun, Peter.

Yes, the Bank of Korea had to officially deny this urban legend when the press kept pestering them about it.  They also had to official deny rumors dating from the late 1990s that the early 10-Won coins from the 1960s were made with gold, and that banks would give people 100,000 KRW if they turned them in.  Another one was that the stone lion statue included in the 10-Won coin minted after 1983 was put there to help (how?) get Noh Taewoo elected.

Offline Figleaf

  • Administrator
  • Honorary Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 30 787
Re: South Korea
« Reply #9 on: July 06, 2020, 08:34:00 PM »
There are plenty of urban legends about coins. I do my best to add another each first April, making sure there are clues to the truth in the story. Yes, they are fun in a sense but they are also fake news (known before as lies.) Too many people have supplanted sources that at least can be held responsible for sources of lies, innuendo, plot theories and even intervention in elections. We can't prevent that here, but at least we can check stories.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline Oklahoman

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 90
Re: South Korea
« Reply #10 on: July 07, 2020, 08:25:07 AM »
What are all the other legends and stories of Korean coins and notes?  I had heard the story of the statue for the election of the president.  What are the others?

Offline Verify-12

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 77
    • Circulation Coins of the Republic of Korea
Re: South Korea
« Reply #11 on: July 07, 2020, 10:46:35 PM »
What are all the other legends and stories of Korean coins and notes?  I had heard the story of the statue for the election of the president.  What are the others?

See above.  A couple of them are there.

-Kim Minji ghost story (this involves at least SIX different "easter eggs" hidden in S. Korean coin and banknote designs)

-"gold" in the 10-Won coin (1st series)

-Banks will give you 100,000KRW for one 1st series 10-Won coin

-Stone Lion added to 3rd Series 10-Won to help elect Noh

-Keep brass 10-Won coins in your shoes to kill odors

-Brass 10-Won coins protect you from electromagnetism if you keep them around your computer

There are some others.