The Wren design for the Farthing

Farthings were one of the copper coins of the old British monetary system, which itself, like much of the world, was so confusing that it is amazing that it wasn't simplified earlier. Twenty Shillings made a Pound. 240 Pennies made a Pound. 5 Shillings made a Crown. A Guinea was 21 Shillings and was used to determin auction fees in business. A Shilling was 12 Pence (12 pennies) and they have sixpence coins, three pences coins, Pennies, a Half Penny and a Farthing (a quarter penny). A Penny was respresented with a small d. 3d was three pence. £ was a Pound. In addition to this, in conformity with much of Europe there were Florins that were 2 Shillings. A half-sovereign was 10 Shillings. A Crown was 5 Shillings. And then we finally had a Groat with was 4 Pence. Even with a nice chart, this was confusing as hell and was all scraped in 1971 for a simplied system which I won't go over here. There is a nice review of the old coinage at Project Britian

A roll of farthings getting ready for an acetone bath

The Wren design for the Farthing was created in 1937 with the accension to the throne of King Edward VIII. But it never made it into circulation as Edward abdicated in order to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson. The first example to be released for circulation was for King George VI who served as King though WWII. Based on the obverse, there was two Royal Protraits, one with inscription “GEORGIVS VI D: G: BR: OMN: REX F: D: IND IMP" and the later one after 1949 and the forumation of the British Commonwealth, “GEORGIVS VI D: G: BR: OMN: REX FIDEI DEF” as India and Pakastan were made independent.

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8 months ago

8 months ago
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