British Coin Gallery

 

British Coin Gallery
British Coin Gallery

1461-1760

This section deals with coinage from Edward VI to George II. I really don't have enough of any of these to justify their own page so have put them together.

 

 

Bronze, Copper and Tin

 

The Halfpenny as a separate denomination of coinage is first known through some very early pieces struck in the name of King Alfred (871-900 AD). Additional pieces were struck for later rulers up to the time of King Edgar (959-971 AD), after which there was a 300 year lapse in production until Edward the first around 1280 AD. These are tiny little pieces of silver which are easily lost, and relatively expensive to mint, thus accounting for their relative scarcity.

 

 

Charles II - c.1665-1670, NGC PF58, Pattern Halfpenny

P-404, Very Scarce. Engraved by Roettier, the reverse legend "I claim the four seas" was removed from the currency issues. Although listed by NGC as 1670, these were likely minted closer to 1665.

 

 

James II - 1678 NGC AU50, tin halfpenny

P-944, Rare, ex-Newman collection. Really a fantastic example of the tin coinage of James II. The tin corrodes away to dust in the majority of cases so to find one with such nice detail remaining is very tough. 1678 is the most common date (dated on the edge for the tin pieces) of the surviving specimens.

 

 

William and Mary - 1690, NGC 45

P-568, Very Rare. Tin.

 

 

William and Mary - 1694, NGC MS62

P-602, Scarce. During this period the Royal Mint was still struggling with manufacture of these large coppers. This particular piece is remarkable for the lack of porosity on the obverse, which plagues this issue. The reverse shows a little more porosity, and rather typical weak strike but is none the less better than the average specimen.

 

 

Anne - circa 1713-1714 Proof Pattern NGC PF 63BN

P-728, Rare. I like to think that Newton himself may have fondled these as he comtemplated the problems the mint was having consistantly striking copper issues. Peck provides a well reasoned argument on the dating of these pieces which he lists as the Group 3 halfpennies and as specimen pieces de plasir, most likely struck int he last year of Anne's reign or just after her death.

 

 

Anne - circa 1713-1714 Pattern NGC MS 64BN

P-724, Rare. Note the die rust on the reverse, the major change between this and P-728 is Britannia holding the rose and thistle.

 

 

George I - 1718 ( 1st Issue), NGC AU55

P-775, Very Rare (no stops on obverse). Spink does not list a value above the grade of VF. This will have to be reslabbed due to the scratches on the obverse of the slab.

 

 

George II - 1729, NGC PF64 BN

P-832. A rare proof.

 

 

George II (Young Head) - 1739 NGC MS63 BN

P-869, Common. George II issued a great many Halfpennies during his reign divided into two groups. The young Head was issued from 1729-1739, and the Old Head issued from 1740-1754. This particular piece is about the average strike for this issue.

 

 

George II (old Head), 1752 NGC MS64 RB

P-882, Common. While considered a common date all George II copper in red brown and red is hard to find. This piece is particularly well struck.

 

 

Silver

 

Sixpence

 

 

1697 William III, NGC MS63

S3538, later Harp with Large Crowns, the most common of the William III 6d's but with really lovely toning on this one.

 

 

1707 E (Edinburgh) Anne, NGC AU55

Although with a cracked flan on the obverse this is a very well struck example. Rated Scarce in ESC.

 

 

 

1711 Anne, NGC MS63

Weakly struck but with good luster and attractive toning.

 

 

1726 George I, NGC AU50

Listed as Rare in ESC and so far nicest I have seen for sale. Small Roses and Plumes reverse

ESC 1602.

 

 

1746 Lima George II, NGC MS65

 

 

1758/7 George II, PCGS MS63

Not particularly hard to find, although listed in ESC as Rare, I believe this to be relatively common for George II.

 

Shillings

 

Shillings (12 pence) are one of my favorite denominations to collect. The term Shilling had been a unit of account for some period in England, the name Shilling is generally considered to be of Germanic origin, although a few scholars continue to support a Latin term for its origin. As early as the reign of Athelstan (922-940 AD) a sheep was valued at one Shilling, although it would be many years before an actual coin of that name came in to use.

 

Henry VII first introduced the coin that would become the Shilling which was called s Testoon during his reign. Later Edward VI introduced the first coin properly called the Shilling.

 

 

Edward VI (Ruled 1547-1553) 1551 S-2482 Third Issue NGC EF40

If you are new to collecting hammered coins please keep in mind that these often come poorly struck and with cracked or chipped flans. Edward VI was the first ruler to issue Shillings.

 

 

Philip and Mary (Ruled 1554-58) S-2498 minted from 1554-1558, NGC VF25

By the Grace of God King and Queen of England, Spain, France, both the Sicilies, Jerusalem and Ireland, Defenders of the Faith, Archdukes of Austria, Dukes of Burgundy, Milan and Brabant, Counts of Habsburg, Flanders and Tyrol. Quite a set of titles wasn't it. It is very difficult to find a clean unmolested example of this issue.

 

 

Elizabeth I (Ruled 1558-1603) 1690-92 S-2577, 6th bust, Hand mintmark, NGC AU50.

 

 

James I (Ruled 1603-1625) 1605-06 S-2654 Third Bust NGC AU50.

 

 

Charles I (Ruled 1639-40) S-2799 NGC AU55, Tun mintmark.

 

 

Commonwealth, 1656, NGC VF20, mintmark Sun.

The Commonwealth period (1649-60) produced coinage using English wording rather than latin, as Latin was considered too suggestive of popery.

 

 

Charles II (Ruled 1660-1685) 1676 S-3358 Third Bust NGC VF35.

 

 

James II (Ruled 1685-1688) 1686, S3410, G over A in Mag, NGC EF40.

A slightly scarcer variety of the James II Shillings. All James II coins are tough to find due to the short period of his reign. The brother of Charles II, James II was forced to abdicate in favor of his daughter Mary, who was married to William of Orange, due to his Catholic tendancies.

 

 

William and Mary 1692, S-3437, NGC VF30

What the Brits would call a Good VF. This version with the jumbled strike in the legend and a fairly smooth dark grey patina. A scarce coin when unmolested.

 

 

William III (1694-1702) 1697 Shilling NGC MS62.

 

 

Anne - 1703 Vigo Shilling NGC MS62

 

 

Anne - 1708 Shilling NGC MS61, 3rd bust.

A very well struck example.

 

 

Anne - 1713/2 Shilling NGC AU50, ESC 1160

A scarce overdate variety with roses and plumes reverse.

 

 

George I - 1718 Roses and Plumes, NGC MS63, 1st Bust

 

 

George I - 1723 SSC Shilling French Arms at date NGC VF30,  ESC 1177.

Listed as R2 in the normal very worn state it is found in and R4 in higher grades. I have other examples of George I that are graded higher, but this is a very difficult piece to find in decent condition. This currently the finest graded at NGC.

 

 

George II - 1736/5 NGC AU55

Rated as R2 in ESC, these are tough to find in high grade.

 

 

George II - 1745 (Lima) NGC MS63.

In July 1745, Captains James Talbot and John Morecock, commanding two privateers in the North Atlantic, the Prince Frederick and the Duke, captured two French treasure ships returning from Callao, the port of Lima. Their haul was £800,000 in silver coins and ingots, plus gold and other goods. A letter published in The Gentlemans Magazine in August 1745 qould appear to confirm this account.

 

 

Medals

 

 

1704 Queen Anne, Battle of Blenheim, NGC MS64PL.

The mirrored surface make this very difficult to photograph. Blenheim has gone down in history as one of the turning points of the War of the Spanish Succession. Bavaria was knocked out of the war, and Louis's hopes for a quick victory came to an end. France suffered over 30,000 casualties including the commander-in-chief, Marshal Tallard, who was taken captive to England.

 

In February 1705, Queen Anne, who had made Marlborough (John Churchill) a Duke in 1702, granted him the Park of Woodstock and promised a sum of £240,000 to build a suitable house as a gift from a grateful crown in recognition of his victory, now known as Blenheim Palace.

 

 

1706 Queen Anne, Barcelona Relieved, NGC MS62 BN.

 

 

1709 Queen Anne, Battle of Malplaquet, NGC MS63 BN

 

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