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I read Chinese decently, so my friend asked me if I knew what their coin was for.

From Chinese, I could read the kanji 金品 (Gold Commodity) and 交换 (Exchange), but not the Japanese. Can someone help me read what the purpose of this coin is for? And then maybe I can make sense of the horse.

enter image description here

Thanks!

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I think it is a medal for game , possibly a derby game. since money-alike medal is prohibitted by the law, it is not exchangable to any money or goods as explained on it. –  jovanni Oct 15 '13 at 16:03
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1 Answer

up vote 7 down vote accepted

It appears to be: 金品ト交換出来マセン

It says "Cannot be exchanged with money or goods":

金品と: with commodities (money/goods)
交換出来ません: Not exchangeable

I don't have a clue why they decided to use katakana (instead of hiragana, as is generally used in Japanese).

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Of course 出来 are Chinese characters, but are only used for phonetic value. There is a question about the etymology of 出来る here. –  Earthliŋ Oct 15 '13 at 16:34
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Etymology has little relevance to Japanese translation. Chinese also, has little relevance to the Japanese meaning of the characters. It may be argued that Japanese and Chinese are similar (Japanese borrowed characters for a writing system), but for the purpose of offering translations, the grammar is quite different. –  user4060 Oct 15 '13 at 16:52
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Ha, I knew that was a ! –  istrasci Oct 15 '13 at 17:01
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@PhoenixFox Before the WW2, katakana was more popular than hiragana. –  jovanni Oct 15 '13 at 18:00
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耒 is listed as an 異体字 of 来 in my 漢和辞典. I've never seen it before, though. –  snailboat Oct 15 '13 at 20:52
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