Genroku-Oban (元禄大判)

Genroku-Oban refers to a large-sized gold coin issued in November 1695 following the issuing of the Keicho-Oban.

As Genroku-Koban (a gold coin smaller than the Oban) and Genroku-Chogin (silver coin) were released according to the Genroku's currency reforms of September 1695, the Oban was issued with a decreased gold content and its minting was mainly done at a minting place built in a radish field near Ryoun-ji Temple in Hongo, Edo (Bunkyo-ku Ward, Tokyo) where Genroku gold and silver was also processed.

General synopsis

It was an angular, oval coin with the letters "ju-ryo (ten-ryo) GOTO (written seal mark)" written in ink by Kenjo GOTO the tenth and Tsujo the eleventh on its surface, and it was an angular, oval coin with a hallmark of paulownia in a circle each on the upper, lower, left and right parts of it. It was characterized by the engraved mark of "Gen" (the first letter of the word Genroku era) on its back, making itself the only coin bearing such a mark among other Oban coins, although this kind of mark could often be seen on Kobans and Chogin silvers whose contents of gold were decreased.

It bore one of the following engraved seals on its back: "mo, seven, kyu,""mo, sa, kyu,""mo, u, kyu,""mo, yama, kyu" or "mo, saka, kyu."

Although as many as 31,795 or 30,240 of the Oban were minted, which was a large amount for Obans minted during the Edo Period, authentic ones are now a rare item.

Although its content of gold was decreased by more than 20 percent, the price was only 1 percent lower from the Keicho Oban, and when compared with Genroku-Koban, the content of gold in the Oban was equivalent to nine-ryo one-bu and its market price was as much as seven-ryo two-bu. The period of currency was from its release in 1695 to the end of December 1725.

[Original Japanese]