Malaysia Clay Gaming Tokens.

  In former times Chinese communities in the Malay states were controlled by their own headmen, or Kapitans, who in addition to their responsibilities for maintaining law and order among their compatriots, also acted as intermediaries between them and the Malay authorities. Until well into the 20th century, a substantial part of the Rulers' revenue was obtained by the sale to selected Chinese of licences which permitted them to operate the state's gambling, opium or liquor 'farms'. The most profitable of these monopolies was the gambling concession, which by tradition was usually one of the 'fringe benefits' of the Kapitan, who could sub-let his rights in areas where there were Chinese settlements. One of the privileges obtained by the gaming house 'farmers' was the right to issue tokens, or counters, for use within their casinos.

  Because small change was always scarce, these tokens gradually came to be accepted in payment for minor purchases, at first perhaps only by shopkeepers who themselves frequented the particular gambling farm that issued them. Later a wider acceptance was achieved and the counters became a recognized form of market currency.

  The early tokens, which were imported from Siam and were of the type issued by the various Bangkok gambling houses, were usually made of porcelain, clay or glass. After a time, similar counters were manufactured locally so that the names of the actual casino licencees, or that of their kongsi, could be inscribed on them.
  The cost of manufacture was very low in comparison to the nominal value of these tokens and this encouraged large-scale counterfeiting that in time became so serious that the licenced issuers were forced to change their designs with great frequency. This eventually led to the appearance of new-type gambling counters, called jokoh.

Diameter: 25mm.
Thickness: 7mm.
Weight: 5.58gm.

This earthen gaming token can be a "premature" porcelain gaming token. The process of making it to be a porcelain token by putting it in high heat temperature was not done.
Source: William Shaw and Mohd Kassim Haji Ali.


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