VIETNAM, LATER LE Dynasty, 1428-1527, 1 van, no date (1510-17 AD), Obverse: HONG THUAN THONG BAO, bronze, 23.5mm, 3.63g, B39.3, N153a, cleaned, VF

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Le Tuong Duc was said to be mean and stupid, He murdered the previous Emperor, his cousin, He was apparently killed by his top general.

The Chinese were never happy with the way things were in Vietnam, and from time to time would invade to try to make the country more like how they wanted it to be. It never worked. The Vietnamese always resisted. The Ming Yong Le Emperor invaded in 1407 and tried to turn Vietnam into a Chinese province. There was rebellion everywhere. Le Loi became top dog amongst the rebels and went on to found the Later Le dynasty after the Chinese withdrew in 1428.

Vietnam has rarely been fully united as a country. Unlike the Koreans, who always formally accepted Chinese suzerainty, the Vietnamese never accepted that status. We could say that the country has been at war with China for the last 2000 years. Still, as we all know, a lot of Chinese cultural influence, including the way they structured their economy and the kinds of coins they made. My main reference for Vietnamese cast coins: The Historical Cash Coins of Viet Nam, by Allan Barker. Supplementary reference: A Working Aid for Collectors of Annamese Coins, by John A. Novak.