The unit of value of the empire of Annam, and which was in- troduced during the reign of the Emperor Minh-mang (1820-1842). It is a base silver coin with a sixteen or twenty-rayed sun on one side and a dragon on the reverse. See Fonrobert (2112-2114, 2123-2124). Under the Emperor Tu-Duk (1847-1883) a silver rectangular bar of three Quan was issued. Fonrobert (2133).
The Quan represented a value of half a Piastre or Tambac-tron (q.v.), and was divided into six hundred Sepeks. Ten Quans in a single block formed a Chuc' ; the French soldiers and sailors called this block " a sow, " from its resemblance to the metal pigs used for ballast in vessels.
The string of cash is also known as a Quan and has superseded the older word Man.
The silver coin of four Francs, struck by Norodom I, King of Cambodia in 1860, is also called a Qwan. See also Kwan.
Source: Frey's Dictionary (American Journal of Numismatics, Vol. 50, 1916)