Monday, 17 April 2017

A handful of coins

bought for £24.00 on Easter Saturday April 2017, but what are they?

The large copper coin is a 1761 coin from the reign of Adolf Frederick. It is not in bad condition. the interesting thing (to me) is it is overstruck on an earlier copper coin. If you look at the reverse at about 4 o'clock there are three dots or lines and at 8 o'clock the faint image of the host coin between the arrow and 1 OR. Next task to identify the host coin!

Having looked at it again the obverse (with AF) looks double struck. Two of the three crowns are in two places.

The others are all Indian. The larger one is Kushan and the two smaller coins are probably South Indian. The copper coin far right middle line seems to be one of those "octopus man" chola? coins. Next job try to narrow these down. I have a few books on Indian coins and there is plenty on the web to help.

Indian coins have always fascinated me as they are relatively cheap but full of interest. 

Saturday, 15 April 2017

This month's meeting was on the theme of mintmarks. Here are some coins that were displayed. 

Top Row; Spanish copper coins all Segovia Mint

The first two on the left was found at Worm’s Head, Gower, and North Wales in 1830s. Spanish coins were used a ballast in ships, at least one of which was wrecked off the Welsh coast. Shame they did not use gold coins for ballast!

Second Row: Copper 8 maravedis 1618 Madrid Mint mark. This coin has been revalued at 16 maravedis and back to 8 maravedis, 4 maravedis 1620 B for Barcelona

Third Row 1789 2 sous Cayenne Colony A mint for Paris, Isles du Vent (Guadeloupe) H mint for La Rochelle and  Two 1815 Decimes both BB Strasbourg mint. One coin has L for Louis and the other N for Napoleon. The two coins mark the siege of Strasbourg. Bought for £2.50 each in 2002. Quite a bargain.

Second tray : all London Mint Roman coins.

You used to be able to buy these for a few pounds. A member commented that she never seen so many London mints coins in the same place!

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Back in the day

We have all heard stories about when you used to be able to buy gold coins for a few pounds and if you sent some money to a coin dealer you would get some collectable items sent to you. It would be nice to travel back in time and buy the coins, tokens or medals that were cheap because no-one collected them then. There must be series now that are overlooked.  I wonder what they are- as people collect most areas? What will people collect in the future? And more importantly will there be collectors to buy them?
The internet has transformed buying and selling coins as any major auction can be followed anywhere in the world. It has also made identifying and valuing coins much easier. The days of finding a box of interesting, unidentified valuable coins that are going for a song are likely to be over. There seem to be less coins coming on to the market from field or detectoring finds. Quite correctly a lot of those go straight to museums.  I know a dealer whose patience must be sorely tested every time someone brings a carrier bag of proof sets and Churchill crowns.
I suspect there will always be a steady demand for coins, medals and tokens. Numismatics satisfies our interests in history, economics, politics and a host of other areas.    Coin prices seem to continue to be strong because the best quality material will always be in demand.
The March meeting was on the coins of the USA. here are some coins members brought along

American coins
A1 French Coinage for Canada and Louisiana:
In 1721-1722 the mints at Rouen (mintmark B) and La Rochelle (mintmark H) produced a copper nine deniers coin for the colonies using copper planchets imported from Sweden. In the summer of 1722 over a half million (534,000) nine deniers coppers were shipped to Canada. Canadians disliked this coin because it was underweight and was not accepted in the British colonies.
A 2 Rosa Americana Tokens 1722-1724:
William Wood, owner of several copper and tin mines, hoped to make a profit producing coins for use in Ireland and America. The coins were made of an alloy called Bath metal composed of 75% brass, 20% zinc (mixed with tin and bismuth) and 5% silver and were to weigh slightly less than half the weight of English coins. Wood produced twopence, penny and halfpenny coins dated 1722-1723. These underweight coins were not generally accepted by the colonists.
A3The Virginia Halfpenny of 1773:
These coins, designed by Yeo, were made at the Tower mint in London. The Revolution broke out just before they were not used until after the war. The halfpenny displays the bust of George III on the obverse with the shield of Virginia on the reverse.

A4 Massachusetts 1787 cent produced locally
B1 The Washington Double Head Cent Token:
This is one of four interrelated Washington tokens of which three bear the date 1783 and two have the designation of "ONE CENT". The Military Bust token was designed by Thomas Wells Ingram and was struck at Bolton's Soho Mint in Birmingham, England between 1820 and 1848, with the 30's or 40's appearing more likely as the token was still in circulation at mid century. Little is known about the Double Head token. It is usually considered to be an imitation of the military bust by an unidentified Birmingham mint.
B2 Washington Military Bust Tokens:
The obverse depicts a laurel wreathed bust facing left in a military uniform with the legend "WASHINGTON AND INDEPENDENCE" and the date 1783 commemorating the end of the Revolutionary War. Clearly, the bust is meant to represent George Washington. However, the central bust punch used for this series was originally produced and used for the Wellington peninsular tokens. They were ordered by J. Picard of Hull from the Birmingham factory of the button and medal maker Sir Edward Thomason. The Wellington tokens were struck at Thomason's press with dies and punches cut by Thomas Halliday, a die-sinker located on Newhall Street in Birmingham.
B3 Merchant token 1850s
Bust of Liberty left, LIBERTY on tiara, PROFESSOR. JOHNSON'S. SOAP & STARCH POLISH. around, 317.BOWERY.N.Y. curves in front of portrait. Rv. Federal-style eagle, FOUNTAIN. BLACKING BRUSH & FRENCH BLUEING around, UNITED. STATES. arcs above eagle's head.

C1 Not one cent
This is an unofficial Civil war period token
C2 And a store token
C3 The American Exhibition was a world's fair held in West Brompton London, in 1887 in the year of Queen Victoria's golden jubilee.
Support for an exhibition had been sought in 1886, but with a loss of support and the British government insisting that an American exhibition not compete with the Colonial and Indian Exhibition, the American Exhibition was deferred to 1887.
The American aim of participating was to display the latest agricultural, mechanical and textile products and inventions from the United States, but the main attraction was the Wild West show featuring Buffalo Bill, part of Colorado's contribution

C 4 American exhibition
The Pan-American Exposition was a World's Fair held in Buffalo, New York, United States, from May 1 through November 2, 1901. The fair occupied 350 acres (1.4 km2) of land on the western edge of what is now Delaware Park, extending from Delaware Avenue to Elmwood Avenue and northward to Great Arrow Avenue. It is remembered today primarily for being the location of the assassination of President William McKinley.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Balkan Bonanza

This month’s meeting featured coins from the Balkans.

Top row: two worn but interesting copper coins from Moldavia and Wallachia. These Eighteen Century coins were struck by the Russians using metal from captured Turkish cannon. These coins were in two denominations - 1 para/3 dengi and 2 para/3 kopeks.

A small Roman coin Caesarum Nostrorum around a wreath containing VOT/X. Mint mark E SIS – Siscia in Croatia the mint mark also includes a rising sun  but what does that signify?
Is the E a Greek numeral 5?

Middle row: PHILIPPI VIC AVG from Macedonia. Philippi was established by Philip II of Macedonia to take control of the neighbouring gold mines and control the route between Amphipolis and Neapolis. Mark Antony and Octavian defeated the assassins of Caesar, Marcus Junius Brutus and Cassius, at the Battle of Philippi in the plain to the west of the city in October 42 B.C. They released some of their veteran soldiers, probably from legion XXVIII, to colonize the city. In 30 B.C., Octavian reorganized the colony, and established more settlers there, veterans possibly from the Praetorian Guard and other Italians.
Coin of Caracalla and Julia Domna from Morcanopolis in Moesia Inferior. Moesia  was 
Roman province along the south bank of the Danube River. It included most of the territory of modern-day Serbia and the northern parts of the modern Republic of Macedonia (Moesia Superior), as well Northern Bulgaria and Romanian Dobrudja (Moesia Inferior).
Modern 1938 20 dinara from Yugoslavia

Bottom row: coin of Philip II from Mesembria in Thrace;
coin from Moesia Superior under Trajan Decius;
Greek coin of Macedonia with a plumed helmet
and finally a local Celtic copy of a Greek stater  

Saturday, 14 January 2017

The first meeting of the New Year was on the theme of Turkey and Asia Minor.

Coins ranged from Ancient Greeks, Roman Provincial, medieval and Ottoman. this is a fascinating series and there is a lot of scope for the collector.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Short Cross coinage, Penny, class Ib, Oxford, Ricard, ricard · on · oxen
Lot 143 from the Sale June 11th 2014.Image supplied by kind courtesy of Dix Noonan Webb.