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Siam / Thailand Coins

Category:  World Coins
Owner:  deposito
Last Modified:  4/10/2021
Set Description
Thailand is the only southeast Asian country that was not colonized. The current line of kings goes back to just about the same time the USA was founded as an independent state. 1781 is the beginning of the Chakri dynasty's rule, and early coins are dated "RS" from this date (1903 = RS 122). This dynasty established itself when Rama I displaced the King Taksin the Great. Taksin the Great, or the King of Thonburi, had been an Ekatat servant and then was a leader in the liberation of Siam from Burmese occupation after the Second Fall of Ayutthaya in 1767, and the subsequent unification of Siam after it fell under various warlords. It is for this reason that the first coin in this set is from the Kingdom of Burma, which itself fell under the total control of Great Britain as an appendage of the colony of India after three Anglo-Burmese Wars.

Set Goals
Get the Gold Rama IV and Rama V. Get some of the rarer date Rama V baht coins, like from 1904 or 1901.

Slot Name
Origin/Country
Item Description
Full Grade
Owner Comments
Pics
View Coin Second Anglo Burmese War BURMA & MYANMAR KYAT CS1214(1852) LETTERING AROUND PEACOCK NGC XF 40 From the year of the start of the Second Anglo Burmese War of 1852-1853. You can't appreciate Thailand without some understanding of its neighbors. Burma had been the chronic antagonist of Siamese kingdoms for hundreds of years, culminating in the 1767 sack of Ayuthaya by the Burmese. But with just one more war to go, Burma was about to become another colony of the British Empire. Not even its own colony, but just part of "India."

Thailand's kings can't get all the credit, but, their ability to bend kept the Siamese Kingdom from breaking and succumbing to colonial rule by France, Britain, the Netherlands, or even the U.S.A., as all of its southeast Asian neighbors did.
View Coin Rama 4 Fuang THAILAND X 1/8B (1860) RAMA IV NGC MS 62 One eighth of the same Baht that comes next in this collection, also an issue of 1860 under King IV.
View Coin Rama 4 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1860) RAMA IV NGC AU 58 King IV, Mongkut, is the king depicted in the "King and I" story. I only mention that because it is how he is most likely known to people outside Thailand. Not because I recommend the story.

More importantly, this King actively got Siam on the path towards modernization in line with what he saw of European states pressuring his neighbors. Burma to the West had been the long-term rival and threat to the Siamese kingdoms occupying present-day Thailand. Burmese armies finally burned the capitol of the strongest Siamese kingdom, Ayutthaya, in 1767. The precursor to the modern Thai state, Siam, began operating under the current Chakri dynasty of kings, from the current capitol at Bangkok, in 1781, the opening of the Rattanakosin era.
View Coin Rama 4 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1860) RAMA IV NGC AU 58 King Mongkut, the "King Four"

27 in this grade AU58 at NGC
37 in higher grades at NGC
View Coin Rama 4 Gold 4 Baht THAILAND X 4B (1863) GOLD - RAMA IV NGC XF Details Gold 4 Baht of King Mongkut (IV) of Siam. This coin connects the 26 Centuries of Gold collection with the Coins of Siam / Thailand collection. King Mongkut was the fourth king in the Chakri dynasty, still in business in Thailand today under King X. This is the King from the "King and I" story. More importantly, this king set Siam on its course of modernization and careful navigation between the encroaching English and French colonies absorbing everything to its east, west and south. Like Japan, Siam found a way in this time to avoid colonization and maintain its own culture while absorbing the elements of Western Civilization that would help it stay independent and enjoy a higher standard of living. Today, it is the country in the region that many of its neighbors want to move to.

In about 1857 Queen Victoria gave Rama IV the first minting machine. It was a hand operated press. In 1863 King Rama IV ordered the production of gold and silver coins of four baht value bearing the Monkut-Krung Siam mark as mementos of his 60th birthday. This is a gold one.

View Coin Rama 5 Old Fuang THAILAND X 1/8B (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC AU 55 This coin looks better than my example from 1860 under Rama IV (MS62). But this one is attributed to 1876-1900, and Rama V. I am unable to see the difference between these coins as far as what is struck on them. I need to learn more, and look more carefully

This is the third Thai coin I have imported from Poland through Podlaski Gabinet. What are they doing over there?
View Coin Rama 5 2 Att THAILAND X 2A CS1244(1882) NGC MS 64 BN A big 2 Att Coin. It has a Chula-Sakarat Era (CS) date: ๑๒๔๔ = 1244 . This number system originates from the creation of Siam as a country in 638 AD. So we have to add 638 to the 1244, and that = 1882 AD. Coins minted from 1835 AD until 1887 AD have this kind of date on them.

This coin is a little too dark for my taste
View Coin Rama 5 Fuang THAILAND X 1/8B (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 66 One of the first two certified Thai coins I bought; along with the MS64 Baht, from a Heritage weekly auction in mid 2016. Turns out these were the best I did. This started out in a PCGS MS65 holder but I wanted all of these in NGC holders, and they called it MS66. It doesn't really look as good as the MS62.
View Coin Rama 5 Fuang THAILAND X 1/8B (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 64 73 in this grade MS64 at NGC
52 graded higher at NGC
View Coin Rama 5 Fuang THAILAND X 1/8B (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 63 I can never have enough of these.
View Coin Rama 5 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 62
View Coin Rama 5 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 62
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 62 NGC has graded 82 including this coin in MS-62 from this undated variety of Rama V Baht (attributed to 1876-1900).
NGC has graded 243 of this same issue in higher grades. There are 482 in all graded conditions at NGC. In a way, that's a lot, if you compare it to the population of graded half dollars from any year 1876-1900, or especially compared to all the half dollars struck between 1876 and 1900.

Each of these MS-62 coins represents 0.0030769230769231 of the NGC population of these coins in the same or better graded condition.
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 62 You can never have too many of these. You either get this, the first issue, which is just given a date range of 1876-1900, or, you get the actual "RS" (Rattanakosin Era, dated from 1781) dated ones from 1902 (RS 121), 1903 (RS 122), etc. to 1908. Because these 1876-1900 coins were struck over a period of many years, these are the most plentiful of this big silver denomination featuring King Chulalongkorn's portrait. He is one of the most revered kings of Thailand.

There is no larger silver denomination featuring King Chulalongkorn's denomination. The two baht coin of his dad, King Mongkut, was not continued past the 1860's, and it never bore anyone's portrait. The only other denomination you can get such a nice big portrait of King 5 on is the Two Att Copper Coin.

The silver baht at this time was 15.1 grams of 90% silver, compared to the U.S.A. Barber half dollar of 12.5 grams of 90% silver. Today, the difference in melt value is Barber Half = $5.34, Thai Baht = $6.45 at silver price = $14.77. So it wasn't perfect, but the exchange rate between the countries was approximately 1.75 Baht to a Dollar, not quite two to one. Today the Baht is closing in on dropping below 30 Baht to a Dollar. I am an optimistic holder of present-day Baht also.

There are only 569 of these graded by PCGS and NGC together in all grades. Imagine if that were the total number of all U.S.A. half dollars graded by both services from 1876 to 1900. The actual mintage is unknown. The populations drop dramatically for the RS dated issues of 1901-1907. Mintage is known for some of these years, and 1903 stands out as the most common by a long way. NGC has graded totals of less than 100 coins in any condition for each of these years (1901-1907). The same is true at PCGS.

As for this 1876-1900 issue, also known as "Y 34" (referring to the year of King Chulalongkorn's reign), NGC and PCGS have graded 84 including this one in MS62, with two more at NGC in 62+
There are 99 graded better at PCGS (including "plus" graded ones)
There are 197 graded better at NGC (including "star" and "plus" graded ones)

But, the grade is not everything with these. People are paying a lot more for bright white or nicely lightly toned MS61 coins than dull dark MS63 coins. The prices have gone up consistently every year for the last six years also, it seems. We paid more for this MS62 coin in 2019 than we paid for the MS64 lightly toned example we bought in 2016.
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 61
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 61 Bought this "Now" from a relatively new Ebay seller in Thailand. It's not easy to find a problem-free mint state Rama V baht for $330 anymore. When can you ever have enough?
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 64 NGC has graded 368 of these. Three in MS66, 17 in MS65, 81 others besides this one in MS64, and 93 in MS63.
PCGS has graded 201 of these. One in MS66, 19 in MS65 and 1 MS65+, 34 in MS64 and 10 in MS64+, and 34 in MS63.
51 have been graded finer at these services, and 115 graded as fine.
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 63 12 in this grade MS63+ at NGC
102 Graded Higher at NGC
I am working towards hoarding 1% or more of the NGC and PCGS "MS" graded Rama Chulalongkorn Baht coins
This coin makes four.
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT RS122(1903) NGC MS 62 I wanted a nice white example of this coin, so I had to eat the markup. Thai coins are getting bid up big recently.

NGC has graded 92 of these. One in MS66, 2 in MS65, 3 in MS64, 17 in MS65, and 13 others in MS62.
PCGS has graded 55 of these. Six in MS64, 3 in MS63 and 1 in MS63+, and 8 in MS62.
At these two services 33 are graded finer and 21 others are graded as fine.

This was PCGS, I got it put into NGC

View Coin Rama 5 Att THAILAND X ATT RS122(1903) NGC MS 62 RB
View Coin Rama 5 Half Att THAILAND X 1/2A RS124(1905) NGC MS 63 RB
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT RS124(1905) NGC XF Details In a details grade but a tough date, my only 1905 baht for now
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT RS125(1906) NGC MS 61 Rattanakosin (RS) Era 125; 1906 AD. Close to the end of King Chulalongkorn's long reign, this coin is less available than most of the other dates, especially the most-common "no date" 1876-1900 issue. I appreciate these coins with some luster and no toning, or very little toning. The least-worn example we have, at MS64, is colorfully toned, which can only be best appreciated outside of the plastic holder unfortunately. These clean examples, on the other hand, are still easy to see.

Now we have 5 mint state Rama V bahts. I have been long Thai Baht and short U.S. Dollars since 2016

年1泰銖。拉瑪五世。

未經流通,反面有紫色包漿。

เหรียญตราแผ่นดิน รัชกาลที่ 5 สภาพน่าสะสม ปีที่หายาก มีผิวโทน ออกแปรงม่วง

There are seven graded at MS61 at NGC, and 14 in MS62, 63, and 64.
There are 3 others in MS61 at PCGS, and 19 in MS62, 63, and 64.
View Coin Rama 5 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B RS125(1906) NGC MS 62
View Coin Rama 5 Fuang THAILAND X 1/8B RS125(1906) PCGS MS 63
View Coin Rama 5 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B RS127(1908) PCGS AU 58 The last year of King "Five" Chulalongkorn
View Coin Rama 5 Fuang THAILAND X 1/8B (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 62 Part of my dirty MS62 set of Rama V silver 1/8, 1/4, and 1 Baht coin set
View Coin Rama 5 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B RS125(1906) NGC MS 62 Part of my small set of dirty mint state Rama V silver coins
View Coin Rama 5 Baht THAILAND X BAHT (1876-1900) RAMA V NGC MS 62 A dark and dirty Rama V Baht. Not the kind I like, but maybe I can find it some friends.
View Coin Rama 6 Half Baht THAILAND X 1/2B BE2458(1915) NGC MS 62
View Coin Rama 6 Baht THAILAND X BAHT BE2458(1915) NGC AU 55 Bought raw, one of few from this batch that came out without a details grade. My only 1915 Baht for now
View Coin Rama 6 Baht THAILAND X BAHT BE2459(1916) NGC MS 62
View Coin Rama 6 Baht THAILAND X BAHT BE2459(1916) NGC MS 63
View Coin Rama 6 Baht THAILAND X BAHT BE2460(1917) NGC MS 64 Rama VI presided over Siam's participation in the Great War, contributing trained pilots and medics to the allies. When there was a victory parade at Versailles, France in 1918, Siam was the only "non-white" country allowed to participate on equal footing with everyone else. Indians, Japanese, Chinese, and various Africans had been involved in the allied war effort, but none of them were allowed to march in the parade.
View Coin Rama 6 Half Baht THAILAND X 1/2B BE2463(1920) NGC MS 64 A half baht from the time when, I believe, no more full baht coins were being minted as the economy deteriorated through 1929.
View Coin Rama 6 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B BE2467(1924) NGC MS 63 A clean salung from near the end of the line for circulation struck silver Thai coinage.

Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.6500
Weight: 3.7500g
ASW: 0.0784oz
Melt Value: $2.08 (1/2/2021)
View Coin Rama 6 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B BE2468(1925) NGC MS 62
View Coin Rama 7 Salung THAILAND X 1/4B BE2472(1929) NGC MS 63 The quarter baht of this 1929 issue is more scarce than the larger half baht. This is the last circulation issue silver currency of Thailand, from its last absolute monarch Rama VII. He abdicated in 1934 after a 1932 bloodless coup.
View Coin Rama 7 Half Baht THAILAND X 1/2B BE2472(1929) NGC MS 62 King Seven
View Coin Rama VII 1/2 Baht THAILAND X 1/2B BE2472(1929) NGC MS 62 One of the few raw Thai coins I bought that came out without a problem, from UFOMechanix in California, on Ebay
View Coin Rama 8 50 Satang THAILAND X 50S BE2489(1946) YOUTH BUST NGC MS 61
View Coin Rama 8 Twenty Five Satang THAILAND X 25S BE2489(1946) YOUTH BUST NGC MS 63 Rama 8 was found dead in his bed with a bullet hole in the left side of his head, and a Colt .45 model 1911 near his left hand. He was right-handed.

This came as PCGS, I put it into NGC
View Coin Rama 9 20 Baht THAILAND X S20B (1963) RAMA IX 36TH BIRTHDAY NGC MS 64 The only early nice big silver coin of Rama IX.

This coin has a slightly wider diameter and slightly more silver (ASW 0.4823) than the original one baht coins of 50 to 100 years before it (ASW 0.4340)
View Coin Rama 9 Baht THAILAND X Baht BE2505(1962) NGC MS 66
View Coin Rama 9 Gold 400 Baht THAILAND X G400B BE2514(1971) KING RAMA IX REIGN NGC MS 68 Gold coin of Thailand from 1971 when private ownership of more than about 5 ounces of gold was illegal for U.S. citizens.

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