~~ Coins of Japan ~~
by Neil Gordon Munro, 1st Edition, 1904

Munro, Neil Gordon:
Coins of Japan, Yokohama, Box of Curios Printing and Publishing Company, 1904 (Meiji 37), large 12mo (5 1/4 x 8 in - 13.5 x 20 cm), gilt decorated green cloth, color woodcut frontispiece, 281 pp. A detailed and well illustrated study of Japanese coins from ancient coins to the then current (Meiji era) coins. Also includes experimental and ornamental coins. Contains 65 plates in addition to the frontispiece. Plates include 25 tissue guard protected color lithographs (gold or silver metallic tints), 1 black and white lithograph, 1 hand colored collotype on card stock (primitive treasure), 1 black and white collotype (Luchu coins), 36 black and white halftone plates and 262 text illustrations. The plate tissue guards (very thin transparent rice type paper) contain descriptive text. The hand colored collotype plate (between pages 6 & 7) is tipped to a very low quality card stock page. This plate is normally found in various states of deterioration (the card not the tipped on collotype) and often detached from the binding. Includes early currency, coins and experimental and ornamental coins. The coins of the Ryukyu Islands (Luchu) are covered on pages 157-65 and illustrated with 9 figures and one plate (black and white collotype). The plate shows "Hatome Sen - Luchu Islands." The book often found the author's inscription on the title page. Occasionally it is found with notations in the margins made by Munro. Many of the notations comment on the scarcity (number of an item know to exist). Some believe that Munro owned the material and the book was basically an unpriced sales catalogue. The key early Western work in the field of Japanese numismatics.

The hand colored collotype plate (between pages 6 & 7) is tipped to a very low quality card stock page. The card browns and becomes brittle. This plate is normally found with the card in various states of deterioration (the card not the tipped on collotype) and often completely detached from the binding.

The first plate in the book, which follows the introduction, is of "Mr. Muramatsu, Japanese Antiquary and Coin Expert."

Binding on the 1904 Edition. The original state book binding format used in this book was not durable. The signatures are stitched together to form the actual text block. The text block is then glued directly to the spine and also affixed by the inner hinges. If the inner hinges crack, the cover will easily pull away from the text block.

It is my experience that in normal use, the inner hinges are invariably broken and, more often than not, the text block is pulled away from the spine and often separated from the boards and spine. Often the block has been re glued to the spine but this will not be obvious until it separates again. These are an unfortunate consequence of the binding technique employed in the production of the book.

Title page:

Back of the title page reads:
Copyright 1904
All rights reserved.
Stereotyped, Printed and Lithographed by the
Box of Curios Printing and Publishing Company
Yokohama, Japan.


Frontispiece           (Color Woodblock)
Title Page              
Preface        iii-iv  
Contents         v-vi    
Intro          vii-xx   Introduction
Chapter I        1-21   Prehistoric & Protohistoric
Chapter II      22-78   Antique Coins
Chapter III     79-99   Mediaeval Coins
Chapter IV    100-154   From Tensho to Meiji
Chapter V     155-186   Provincial Coins
Chapter VI    186-209   Gold and Silver Currency
              210-214   Meiji Currency
Chapter VII   215-248   Experimental & Ornamental Coins
  A-G         249-269 
Index         270-281 
Corrigenda    1 Unnumbered Page 

Color woodcut frontispiece

65 full page plates

  • 25 tissue guard protected lithographs in gold or silver
  • 1 black and white lithograph
  • 1 handcolored collotype
  • 1 black and white collotype
  • 37 black and white halftone

  • 65 plates in total

Summary of Illustrations

Examples of Illustrations

Collotype (handcolored & tipped to card)
(Between pages 6 & 7)

"Plate 1, Primitive Treasure"

Lithograph (in gold)

Lithograph (in gold)

Halftone (black and white)

Colophon at Rear

Printed: Meiji 37 (1904).9.9
Distributed: Meiji 37 (1904).9.15


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