1797 George III British Copper Penny Coin
A very nice coin, 1797 PENNY GEORGE III with excellent detail.
Diameter: 35 mm, Weight: 28g, Material: Copper.
The first copper penny to be circulated in Britain, the
cartwheel penny was designed to combat counterfeiting.
Designed to weigh its exact value in copper, (one ounce),
the 1797 penny was very large.
The 1797 British penny obverse features the robed
laureate bust of King George III facing right. The legend
reads: ‘GEORGIUS III-D:G-REX.’
The reverse shows Britannia seated facing left, holding an
olive branch and a trident with a shield resting beside, with
a ship in the distance. The legend reads ‘BRITANNIA.’
above, with the date below.
|Monarch||George III (1760 – 1820)|
|Minted||Soho, Handsworth, England|
|Mintage||approx. 8,601,600 (inc varieties)|
1797 PENNY GEORGE III
The first base metal regal pennies to circulate in Britain,
these pieces were produced by Matthew Bouton using a steam powered press at the Soho mint in Birmingham in 1797.
From 1770 until the end of the 18th century the practice of melting down the official copper coins
and making lightweight forgeries had become so widespread
that it prompted industrialist Matthew Boulton to offer a potential solution.
He proposed that each coin should actually be made to contain its value in copper (one ounce avoirdupois),
that the quality should be improved by using a retaining collar during striking (to give a perfectly round coin)
and by designing the coins with thick raised borders to prevent them wearing so easily.
This type was struck in copper by Boulton for several years after 1797 with no change in date
, along with some later strikes in a variety of metals.
Further restrikes were produced by W.J. Taylor when he bought the dies in 1848;
the chief way these later issues can be distinguished is by marks resulting from die corrosion.
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