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BNPS.co.uk (01202 558833)<br />
Pic: Mossgreen/BNPS<br />
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Ornamental Buddhist monument that the note was found in.<br />
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Not funny money - An ancient Chinese bank note with the grim warning 'those who use counterfeit banknote will be beheaded, the whistle-blower will be rewarded 250 Liang silvers plus all the properties of the criminal.' has been discovered in an old buddhist statue.<br />
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A rare 700-year-old Chinese banknote dating from the Ming Dynasty has been discovered hidden inside the head of an ornamental Buddhist monument. <br />
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The crumpled A4-sized piece of paper was found in a 13th century wooden sculpture of a Luohan - a name given to those who have achieved enlightenment - purely by chance at an auction house in Australia. <br />
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Specialists were inspecting the carving for any damage so that it could be valued before going under the hammer when they uncovered the folded currency concealed in the head cavity.<br />
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The Luohan sculpture and the banknote will be be sold together next month by Mossgreen auction house in Australia with a combined estimate of £37,000. The banknote on its own would be expected to achieve £3,000.