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2. Why are current coins rounded ? Are there any different shaped coins?

Before Meiji era (1868) there were oblong and square shaped coins. All coins were produced in round shaped after that era. In 1869 the government decided to adopt Okuma's opinion of encouraging the rounded coin production.

His opinions are:

  1. Rounded-coins are handled easier than square coins.
  2. More resistant against erosion.

Around fifty countries issue other than rounded-coins. Some of which have polygon-shaped coins, however they are almost rounded-shape.