Ten Cents (Debased Silver), Coin Type from Sarawak - detailed information

Ten Cents (Debased Silver), Coin Type from Sarawak (issued 1920 - 1920)
Coin TypeTen Cents (Debased Silver)

Silver coinage was introduced in Sarawak in 1900 with weights and fineness of the silver coins corresponding with the respective issues of Hong Kong and the Straits Settlements. In 1920 the denomination was first debased (this issue), then later the same year supplanted by copper-nickel coinage.

This is a one year only type. Composition: 50% silver. The mass was 41.9 grains in the measurement units of the time, equal to 2.71 grammes.

These coins circulated until the Japanese occupation forces replaced them with their own invasion currency in 1942. After the war, Sarawak did not regain independence and eventually became one of the states forming the Federation of Malaysia. Its coinage was formally demonetised in 1953.


Head of Vyner (Charles Vyner de Windt Brooke), the third and last Rajah of Sarawak, facing right. Around above, the monarch's legend C. V. BROOKE RAJAH; below, · SARAWAK ·.

Obverse Inscription C. V. BROOKE RAJAH · SARAWAK ·

Within a rope circle tied at the bottom, the value 10; around, TEN · 1920 · CENTS. The mint mark H of the Birmingham Mint (previously known as Heaton and Sons) is below the knot.

Reverse Inscription 10 TEN · 1920 · CENTS
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone

"The Coins of Malaysia" and "The Encyclopaedia of the Coins of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, 1400-1967" say composition is 0.800 silver, probably in error. According to Krause, it's 0.400. Other debased Sarawak coins though were 0.500 silver so the 10 cents were also presumably of the same composition.

References to additional information:

[Book] Saran, Singh. The Encyclopaedia of the Coins of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, 1400-1967. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: Malaysia Numismatic Society, 1986. pp 351-372.
[Book] Kavanagh, Kevin F. 1969. The Coins of Malaysia, pp 65-73
[Book] Remick, Jerome. 1971. British Commonwealth Coins., pp 489-492

Coin Type: Ten Cents (Debased Silver) - (1) Coins
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Ten Cents (Debased Silver): Details
CurrencySarawak Dollar
Sub-type ofTen Cents
Face Value10 (x Cent)
CurrentNo (demonetised 1953)
Material0.500 Silver
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
Size17.900 mm
Mass2.710 g