1862 GB & Ireland bronze farthing (Victoria, Bun Head) uncirculated

O’Brien Coin Guide: GB & Ireland Bronze Farthings (Victoria)

Background The bronze Coinage of Queen Victoria was introduced in the year 1860, to replace the copper coinage first inaugurated by Charles II in 1672. This new alloy for coinage had several advantages over the old copper coins:- it was lighter, cheaper and had greater hardness / durability But bronze is not as easy to…

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1943 GB & Ireland bronze farthing (George VI)

O’Brien Coin Guide: GB & Northern Ireland Bronze Farthings (George VI)

Background: Edward VIII advised the Royal Mint that he wanted a modern coinage to reflect a modern Britain but, after his abdication, it was his younger brother (George VI) who inherited his new designs – the first of which was the farthing. A European Wren replaced Britannia on the reverse. This bird motif was similar…

1956 GB & Ireland bronze farthing (Elizabeth II)

O’Brien Coin Guide: GB & Northern Ireland Bronze Farthings (Elizabeth II)

Background: By the 1950s, the farthing had pretty much lost its spending power and there were calls for its withdrawal. An average of 20 million farthings per year were produced during the reign of George VI but inflation made these coins virtually obsolete during Elizabeth’s early reign. The Royal Mint stopped producing them in 1956…

1937 GB & Ireland Pattern Threepence (Edward VIII) in nickel brass

O’Brien Coin Guide: GB & Ireland Brass Threepence (Edward VIII)

Background By the end of George V’s reign the threepence had become unpopular in England because of its small size. Although it was still popular in Scotland, the government of the day decided to introduce a more substantial thru’penny bit which would have a more convenient weight/value ratio than the silver coinage. The silver threepence…

1870 GB & Ireland silver three-halfpence (Victoria) - proof

O’Brien Coin Guide: GB & Ireland Silver Three-Halfpence

Introduction: The ‘three-halfpence’ was the smallest silver coin ever struck by the Royal Mint for circulation. It was worth ​11⁄2d (or ​1⁄160 of a pound) and was produced for circulation in the British colonies, specifically for use in British Guiana, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), Mauritius, Sierra Leone and the West Indies. They were a rough…