people

43. Ma Rong – engraver of Mao and monkeys

Generally speaking, the designers and engravers of Chinese banknotes and postage stamps do not receive a lot of attention. Until recently, banknote printing was shrouded in secrecy. In 2015, the new edition of the 100-yuan note was issued, and hit the news for two specific reasons: it was China’s first digitally engraved banknote and it was engraved by a woman. MA Rong is hardly a household name, but her work is known to millions. (more…)

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37. Coins and charms in the “Jin shi suo”, by Feng Yunpeng and Feng Yunyuan

Two small volumes have recently been acquired by the library of the Department of Coins and Medals at the British Museum. The titles are missing from the front covers, but they can be identified as two volumes that together make up the Coins section of the Jin shi suo (Metals part 4). (more…)

35. The account books of Derek Bryan, consular official in Peking (Beijing), in the 1930s

The School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) recently acquired “The Personal Papers of Derek Bryan, Consular Official and Teacher” [SOAS PP MS 99]. Derek Bryan went to China in 1932, aged 21, as a student interpreter with the Foreign Office, and remained there, on and off, until 1951. Back in the UK, he worked to encourage understanding of China, writing and teaching. He was very much involved in the Britain-China Friendship Association (BCFA), and founded the Society for Anglo-Chinese Understanding (SACU) in 1965. Among his papers are very detailed financial accounts and letters home. Further biographical information for Hermann Derek Bryan (1910-2003) can be found on the SOAS blog.  (more…)

31. Zhu Xihua, coin designer and engraver

Zhu Xihua 朱熙华, coin designer and engraver at the Shanghai Mint Co Ltd 上海造币有限公司 has just been honoured with a Shanghai Skilled Worker Award. (more…)

30. Chinese Coins from the Scholar’s Study

“Chinese Coins from the Scholar’s Study” at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, opened on 25 April. It closes on Sunday 24 September. It’s a small, but thoughtful display and well worth a visit if you can make it. (more…)

28. Who’s Who in East Asian Numismatics?

The online newsletter Coins Weekly runs a regular feature “Who’s Who in Numismatics”, introducing people who are active in the field. So far, in terms of people working on East Asian numismatics, they have featured Joe Cribb and last week the spotlight was on François Thierry de Crussol. I hope they’ll also go further afield and feature some of the numismatists based in East Asia too. (BTW, subscription to Coins Weekly is free) (more…)