Browse Exhibits (1 total)

From Tokugawa to Meiji: Japanese Coins


This exhibit traces some of the numismatic changes from Japan's Tokugawa Period (1603 and 1868) to the Meiji Period (1868-1912). 

During the Tokugawa Period, the coinage system recognized by the Tokugawa era Japanese Government was not nationally standardized like it is today. Different types of these coins were made and used in different provinces. One reason for this was that during the Tokugawa Period, real power often shifted between Shogunate families in different areas of Japan. Commodity trade and currency exchange with foreign coins occurred as well. 

During the Meiji Restoration, a series of events initiated major political, social, and economic changes for Japan.The Japanese Government initiated a coinage system that would be used uniformilly throughout Japan. Thus, the Meiji coinage system represents the consolidation of practical power within the Japanese Government. All Japanese were expected to use this currency type minted and issued by the Japanese Imperial Government.

Through ten coins, this exhibit provides select snapshots of the rapid numismatic changes that occured in Japan from Tokugawa to Meiji.