This is an individual mixed date copper farthing in ordinary circulation.
This is an individual coin, not a set of 5. The obverse and reverse design of the coin will vary.
The coins have been in circulation and your coin will be chosen at random from a bag of coins. If you would like to choose a particular design or would like a high specimen example, please contact us so we can hand-pick one, grade and price it for you.
If you're interested in a bag of the coins, make us an offer!
The only commonly produced coin for many years was the silver penny. Before 1279, if change smaller than a penny was required, the coin had to be divided into halves or quarters. This was referred to as halving and fourthing. It is believed that the name farthing is derived from "fourthing" or "feorling". The cross on the reverse of most pennies, helped to make it easier to cut pennies for change.
The first round farthing was issued from 1279 under Edward I, it was made of silver. Farthings continued to be produced in small quantities for most monarchs up to Edward VI in about 1553, when the last silver farthing was produced.
During the reigns of Mary, with and without Philip, no farthings were produced. One of the reasons was that small denomination coins such as the halfpence and farthings, were only issued in small quantities at a great cost. The production cost for small coins is almost as great as for large coins. The monarch was always reluctant to make a loss on minting activity, preferring understandably to make a profit.
Under Elizabeth I, silver three-farthings were issued. This solved the problem of minting the inconveniently small silver farthing, a threefarthing coin could be given in change if a penny were tendered. The three-farthings bore a rose behind Elizabeth's portrait, as did sixpences, threepences, and threehalfpences. This was to distinguish them from shillings, groats, halfgroats and pennies
Under James I, copper farthings were produced. At first these were produced privately under licence from the Crown, first by Lord Harrington, then by Lennox. the licence changed hands several times, and privately issued copper farthings continued to be produced under Charles I.
After Charles I got the chop, a copper farthing was issued by Oliver Cromwell, bearing his portrait.
The last farthings were produced in 1956.
The obverse designs will vary.
There were 2 reverse designs for the farthing:-
The Britannia reverse was designed by Leonard Charles Wyon and features a seated Britannia holding a trident. This design remained on the coins up until 1937.
The wren design was used on the first farthings of George VI in 1937 to the very last farthing of 1956 during the reign of Elizabeth II. It was designed by Harold Wilson Parker.
The patten coin of Edward VIII featured the new wren design on the reverse.
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