One Won

One won일원One -v- ten

One Won, a set on Flickr.

Here is an old one won coin. It’s about forty years old and weighs less than a gram, which is lighter than it’s nearest modern day contemporary, the ten won coin. It was found by my father-in-law on the beach in Jumunjin a while ago.

Herself can remember using a one won coin and recalls that back in the day that you could actually buy things with the one won coin. As a historical source, herself can be less than reliable at times. When I asked what she said, “ah, ye know, this and that”. Yes. Of course I know… Either way, can you imagine finding anything for sale at ten won today?

Doing a bit of research about this, as you do, I found that this is actually the second of three of the one won coins minted. This coins minting began in 1968 and, if I’m not mistaken, it was the third coin ever minted by The Bank of Korea.

When I saw it first I thought it was Japanese. But the size, colour and weight actually reminded me of some old East German coins I recall holding when I was in secondary school – entirely made of aluminium. It felt really light and I thought I could litterally blow it out of my hand like a feather.

Coins are always kind of special I think, because they seem to last forever. I always feel amazed whenever I hold a coin which is thirty years old or more. What has this coin seen? Where has it been and what has it bought? A forty year old coin like this one won coin definitely gets me asking these questions that I will never be able to answer.

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