British Museum collections, £12.99
String of 800 cash
From southern China, around AD 1910
Hundreds of coins strung together
As each individual coin was worth very little, cash coins of China and East Asia were often strung together into a larger unit of 1000. A string could contain fewer coins, but still retain its nominal value of 1000 cash.
Although this particular assemblage of 800 coins looks more like a bunch of bananas, it can still be termed a 'string' of coins. It contains cash coins and forgeries from China (including an eleventh-century coin), Japan, Vietnam and Hong Kong. The presence of coins from Vietnam and Hong Kong indicates that it probably came from the south of China.