Two shillings and sixpence
|Mass||(1816–1970) 14.14 g|
|Diameter||(1816–1970) 32.31 mm|
|Composition||(1816–1919) 92.5% Ag |
(1920–1946) 50% Ag
|Years of minting||1707–1970|
|Design||Profile of the monarch (Elizabeth II design shown)|
|Design||Various (crowned Royal Shield shown)|
|Designer||Edgar Fuller and Cecil Thomas|
The British half crown was a denomination of sterling coinage worth 1/8 of one pound, or two shillings and six pence (abbreviated "2/6", familiarly "two and six"), or 30 (old) pence. The half crown was first issued in 1549, in the reign of Edward VI. No half crowns were issued in the reign of Mary, but from the reign of Elizabeth I half crowns were issued in every reign except that of Edward VIII, until the coins were discontinued in 1970.
The half crown was demonetised (ahead of other pre-decimal coins) on 1 January 1970, the year before the United Kingdom adopted decimal currency on Decimal Day. During the English Interregnum of 1649–1660, a republican half crown was issued, bearing the arms of the Commonwealth of England, despite monarchist associations of the coin's name. When Oliver Cromwell was made Lord Protector of England, half crowns were issued bearing his portrait depicting him wearing a laurel wreath in the manner of a Roman Emperor. The half crown did not display its value on the reverse until 1893.
From 1816, in the reign of George III, half crown coins had a diameter of 32 mm and a weight of 14.14 grams (defined as 5⁄11 troy ounce ), dimensions which remained the same for the half crown until decimalisation in 1971.
The mintage figures below are taken from the annual UK publication COIN YEARBOOK.Proof mintages are indicated in italics.
The standard circulating coinage of the United Kingdom, British Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories is denominated in pennies and pounds sterling, and ranges in value from one penny sterling to two pounds. Since decimalisation, on 15 February 1971, the pound has been divided into 100 (new) pence. Before decimalisation, twelve pence made a shilling, and twenty shillings made a pound.
Royal Maundy is a religious service in the Church of England held on Maundy Thursday, the day before Good Friday. At the service, the British monarch or a royal official ceremonially distributes small silver coins known as "Maundy money" as symbolic alms to elderly recipients. The coins are technically legal tender, but typically do not circulate due to their silver content and numismatic value. A small sum of ordinary money is also given in lieu of gifts of clothing and food that the sovereign once bestowed on Maundy recipients.
The British decimal halfpenny coin was a denomination of sterling coinage introduced in February 1971, at the time of decimalisation, and was worth one two-hundredth of one pound. It was ignored in banking transactions, which were carried out in units of 1p.
The history of the English penny from 1603 to 1707 covers the period of the House of Stuart, up to the Acts of Union of 1707 which brought about the Union of the Kingdom of England with the Kingdom of Scotland.
The British penny, a large, pre-decimal coin which continued the series of pennies which began in about the year 700, was struck intermittently during the 20th century until its withdrawal from circulation after 1970. From 1901 to 1970, the obverse of the bronze coin depicted the monarch who was reigning at the start of the year. The reverse, which featured an image of Britannia seated with shield, trident, and helm, was created by Leonard Charles Wyon based on an earlier design by his father, William Wyon. The coins were also used in British colonies and dominions that had not issued their own coins.
The British florin, or two-shilling piece was a coin worth 1/10 of one pound, or 24 pence. It was issued from 1849 until 1967, with a final issue for collectors dated 1970. It was the last coin circulating immediately prior to decimalisation to be demonetised, in 1993, having for a quarter of a century circulated alongside the ten-pence piece, identical in specifications and value.
The British pre-decimal halfpenny,, historically also known as the obol and once abbreviated ob., was a denomination of sterling coinage worth 1/480 of one pound, 1/24 of one shilling, or 1/2 of one penny. Originally the halfpenny was minted in copper, but after 1860 it was minted in bronze. In the run-up to decimalisation it ceased to be legal tender from 31 July 1969. The halfpenny featured two different designs on its reverse during its years in circulation. From 1672 until 1936 the image of Britannia appeared on the reverse, and from 1937 onwards the image of the Golden Hind appeared. Like all British coinage, it bore the portrait of the monarch on the obverse.
The British farthing historically abbreviated qua., was a denomination of sterling coinage worth 1/960 of one pound, 1/48 of one shilling, or 1/4 of one penny. It was minted in copper and later in bronze, and replaced the earlier English farthings.
The British threepence piece, usually simply known as a threepence, thruppence, or thruppenny bit, was a denomination of sterling coinage worth 1/80 of one pound or 1/4 of one shilling. It was used in the United Kingdom, and earlier in Great Britain and England. Similar denominations were later used throughout the British Empire and Commonwealth countries, notably in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
The British crown was a denomination of sterling coinage worth 1/4 of one pound, or 5 shillings, or 60 pence. The crown was first issued during the reign of Edward VI, as part of the coinage of the Kingdom of England.
The half sovereign is a British gold coin with a nominal value of half of one pound sterling. It is half the weight of its counterpart 'full' sovereign coin.
The British farthing was a British coin worth a quarter of an old penny. It ceased to be struck after 1956 and was demonetised from 1 January 1961.
The British sixpence piece, sometimes known as a tanner or sixpenny bit, was a denomination of sterling coinage worth 1/40 of one pound or half of one shilling. It was first minted in 1551, during the reign of Edward VI, and circulated until 1980. The coin was made from silver from its introduction in 1551 until 1947, and thereafter in cupronickel.
The British halfpenny coin was worth 1/480th of a pound sterling. At first in its 700-year history it was made from silver, but as the value of silver increased the coin was made from base metals. It was finally abandoned in 1969 as part of the process of decimalising the British currency. "Halfpenny", colloquially written ha'penny, was pronounced HAY-pə-nee; "1 ½d" was spoken as a penny ha'penny or three ha'pence.
The threepence or threepenny bit was a denomination of currency used by various jurisdictions in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, valued at 1/80 of a pound or ¼ of a shilling until decimalisation of the pound sterling and Irish pound in 1971. It was also used in some parts of the British Empire, notably Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
The Australian Shilling, informally called a "bob", was a type of silver coinage issued by the Commonwealth of Australia, that circulated prior to the decimalisation of Australian coinage. The Australian shilling was derived from the British pre-decimal sterling pound system and was first issued following the passing of the Australian Coinage Act 1909, which established Australia's first formal currency system. The shilling was issued as part of Australia's silver coinage, which included the two-shilling (florin), the sixpence and the threepence. The shilling was minted from 1910 until 1963. During this period there was one significant modification to the design of the Australian shilling, the change in its reverse design, which occurred in 1938 when the design was altered from the Australian Coat of Arms (1910-1936) to the visage of a Merino ram’s head (1938-1963).
The Australian sixpence circulated from 1910 up until the decimalisation of Australian Currency in 1966. The coins were initially minted in England; however, Australia began to mint their own from the year of 1916 at branches of the Royal Mint in Sydney and Melbourne. The coins which made up Australia's pre-decimal currency were identical to British currency in the characteristics of weight and size. The Coinage Act of 1909–1947, authorised the issue of Australian coins in the select denominations, including the sixpence. By 1916 all silver denominations, including the sixpence, could be minted at the Royal Mint branch in Melbourne. Unique Australian currency was created with decimalisation in 1966.
The British shilling, abbreviated "1/-", was a unit of currency and a denomination of sterling coinage worth 1/20 of one pound, or twelve pence. It was first minted in the reign of Henry VII as the testoon, and became known as the shilling, from the Old English scilling, sometime in the mid-16th century. It circulated until 1990. The word bob was sometimes used for a monetary value of several shillings, e.g. "ten-bob note". Following decimalisation on 15 February 1971 the coin had a value of five new pence, and a new coin of the same value but labelled as "five new pence" or "five pence" was minted with the same size as the shilling until 1990, after which the shilling no longer remained legal tender. It was made from silver from its introduction in or around 1503 until 1946, and thereafter in cupronickel.
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The crown, originally known as the "crown of the double rose", was an English coin introduced as part of King Henry VIII's monetary reform of 1526, with a value of 1/4 of one pound, or five shillings, or 60 pence