June 24, 2000
Gao Chang Ji Li (top right bottom left)
Xinjiang Numismatics, Hong Kong, 1997:
Gaochang jili cash was coined in the reigns of the kings of the Qu's lineage (499-640). Made in excellent workmanship, jili cash were inscribed with Han characters in the official script style of the Han dynasty. The cash was circular, with a square hole in the middle, thick and weighty ...
Message from Gilbert Tan (24-Jun-00):
The shown coin is genuine.
Message from Francois Thierry (30-Jun-00):
In 640, the Tang dynasty taked Gaochang that was actually ally of the Turks against Chinese Empire, it is clear that the Tang do not cast coins with the name of their former enemy, the kingdom of Gaochang between 640 and 642. The owner of the tomb was Qu Wenzi, the wife of Zhang Longye. Qu Wenzi was a member of the Qu familly, the ruling family of Gaochang kingdom. In this tomb Chinese archaeologists have found many official documents of the time of King Qu Wentai (620-640): see Zhou Kunning, "Zailun Gaochang guo de Gaochang jili qian", in Qianbi shijie VII-1991, 18-25, and Tulufan chutu wenshu" edited by Xinjiang Museum, Wuhan University and Cultural Relics National Board, Peking 1981-1991, vol. IV p. 123. The typology of the coin (smaller hole than all wuzhu coins or Northern Zhou coins, rims biger than the wuzhu, the four characters...) is close to kaiyuan tongbao coins: for this reason I think that this coin should be attributed to King Qu Wentai (620-640) who issued this coins as an imitation of the Tang dynasty cash coin kaiyuan.
1 The Astana necropole is very close to the ruins of Qojo-Gaochang in the Turfan oasis (now Tulufan, Xinjiang Province). This necropole was the cimetery of the former Qojo city; many sasanian silver coins were found in this necropole and a very rich archaeological material was excavated (official and economic documents, clothes, coins, clay objects, etc).
Chinese Coinage Web Site