Origin: These copper "cash" coins date back to the Song dynasty (960 - 1279 CE) of medieval China. They're from the reigns of many different emperors, but all the coins date within the time period above.
The Song dynasty is typically divided into two distinct periods: the Northern Song (960 - 1127) and the Southern Song (1127 - 1279). The events that caused this separation are known as the Jin-Song Wars, when the Song lost control of northern China to the rival Jin dynasty.
Under the Song, China experienced many new innovations in technology and governance. The Song issued paper banknotes, which are the oldest known in world history. They also established the first permanent standing navy in China. Gunpowder also came into common use during this time.
The dynasty would eventually be conquered by the Mongol Empire and the later Mongol-led Yuan dynasty, putting all of China under the rule of a foreign power for the first time.
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