|The Nagasaki trade coins found in Hà Tĩnh. Photo thanhnien.vn|Viet Nam News
HÀ TĨNH — A museum in central Hà Tĩnh Province has announced the discovery of some Nagasaki metal coins at archeological sites in the locality.
Nguyễn Trí Sơn, the museum’s director, said his staff found the coins when they were excavating at sites in the province’s Cẩm Xuyên and Kỳ Anh districts.
According to researchers, the coins were produced in the 17th century when the Tokugawa government permitted Nagasaki to cast coins for trade in the period from 1659 to 1685 with other countries, including Việt Nam under the rule of Nguyễn Lords (1558-1777).
They said the coins came into the country mainly via trade activities in ancient Hội An Town in Đàng Trong (Old Việt Nam’s southern part) and old Hà Nội in Đàng Ngoài (Old Việt Nam’s northern part).
Nagasaki trade coins were inscribed with ancient Chinese characters copied from the Sung Dynasty (960-1279). Their diameter was about 24mm and each coin had a 7mm square hole in the middle. The edges of the hole were very straight and neat.
The coins found in Hà Tĩnh had shapes and sizes similar to those in descriptions of Nagasaki trade coins and they remain in quite good condition.
According to Sơn, this is the first time the ancient Japanese coins have been found in the locality and historians would have a lot work to do in finding out foreign trade activities during the imperial period in Hà Tĩnh.
The coins are preserved at Hà Tĩnh Museum for further study. — VNS