Blessings are an integral element of Chinese culture. In offering them with a coin, medal, or other traditional method of well-wishing, the giver expresses to the recipient a wish or hope for their future happiness.
Written and spoken Chinese lends itself particularly well to symbolism and double meaning. Through the graphic symbols of the written language and the overlap of similar-sounding words, the culture has evolved a tradition of employing letters, sounds, and images to convey robust messages with amplified meaning. These messages are readily understood within Chinese and Chinese Canadian culture.
This coin features a series of symbolic images representing the traditional Five Blessings of Chinese culture. In a polished crescent on the left side of the coin appear five animals that traditionally connote blessings, including a bat for happiness, a deer for career success, a crane for long life, and two magpies for joy. The right side of the coin is richly decorated with circular imagery overlaid with the Chinese symbol used to offer a wish for good fortune.