O’Brien Coin Guide: The Unofficial Irish Token Coinages of George III (1760-1820)

Introduction The late 18th century is a complicated time from the perspective of collecting tokens insofar as several dealers began to manufacture their own tokens for collectors, i.e. these did not circulate. They doubled and tripled their profits by deliberately producing mules, i.e. mis-matching obverse and reverse dies. They then increased their profits further by…

coins, numismatics, irish free state, eire, ireland, florin, two-shillings, The rare 1943 Ireland florin - approx. known examples exist.

O’Brien Rare Coin Review: Why is the 1943 Irish Florin so valuable?

Introduction The 1943 florin is the rarest ‘modern’ Irish coin to have actually circulated. The 1985 Irish 20p was not intended to circulate The 1992 Irish 10p was not intended to circulate Both of the coins listed above were minted for only testing purposes, i.e. to calibrate vending machines and they were supposed to have…

Ireland 1928 threepence coin ireland saorstat eireann eire percy metcalfe

O’Brien Coin Guide: Irish Pre-Decimal Threepence

The threepence (3d) (Irish: leath reul) coin was an Irish pre-decimal coin and a great favourite of golfers who often used it as a green marker.  There were 4 threepences to a shilling and 80 to an old pound.  The Irish name (leath reul) literally meant “half a sixpence” and, unlike many other Irish coins of the time, it…

Hiberno-Manx silver penny, viking, Phase II imitation, isle of man, feremin,

O’Brien Coin Guide: The enigma of the Hiberno-Manx Coinages of the mid-11th Century

I am frequently asked the following questions and I openly admit to struggle to answer them adequately – the negative side of being a generalist dealer (constantly buying old attic finds and selling oddments from same), as opposed to being a specialist numismatic expert like so many of my much more knowledgeable customers. Who ordered…

O’Brien Rare Coin Review: Why is the 1938 Irish Penny so valuable?

In 1937, a new constitution declaring Ireland a free state was established and the old designs for the coins of Ireland that featured the legend “Saorstat Eireann” or Irish Free State were changed to “Eire” to reflect the new constitution. The only known 1938 coins to feature that revised legend are: one halfcrown (currently unique…