Farthing, Coin Type from United Kingdom - detailed information

Farthing, Coin Type from United Kingdom (issued 1806 - 1956)
Coin TypeFarthing

The Farthing was a small circulating coin of the British pre-decimal Pound Sterling, equal to a quarter of a penny. Prices were never written in farthings though - something worth a farthing would be quoted as 1/4d ("d" being the abbreviation for "penny", from the Roman "denarius"). There were 20 shillings to a pound, 12 pence to a shilling and 4 farthings to a penny, so 960 of these coins made up £1.

In 1801 the parliaments of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland each passed an Act of Union, uniting the two kingdoms and creating the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Re-coinage followed in 1806, after which four types of farthings were issued: a large copper coin with concave surfaces and a Britannia reverse (1806 and 1807 only), a large copper coin with a second Britannia design (1821 to 1864), then smaller bronze coins - with a third Britannia design (1860 to 1895), a simplified fourth Britannia design (1895 to 1936) and finally a new farthing design featuring a wren bird (1937 to 1956).

The farthing denomination was demonetised before the rest of the pre-decimal currency - it ceased to be legal tender after 31 December 1960.

Obverse
United Kingdom / Farthing - obverse photo

Effigy of the ruling British monarch, part of the legend (in Latin).

During the existence of the denomination, farthings were issued for:
- King George III (1806 - 1807)
- King George IV (1821 - 1831)
- King William IV (1831 - 1837)
- Queen Victoria (1838 - 1901)
- King Edward VII (1902 - 1910)
- King George V (1911 - 1936)
- King George VI (1937 - 1952)
- Queen Elizabeth II (1953 - 1956)

Obverse Inscription Legend of the ruling British monarch
Reverse
United Kingdom / Farthing - reverse photo

The reverse went through several transformations during the existence of the denomination.

The first reverse (1806 - 1807) was designed by Conrad Heinrich Küchler; the coins were struck by the Soho Mint. It shows the figure of Britannia - the female personification of Great Britain - seated on a rock, facing left, holding a trident and extending an olive branch; a shield decorated with the British flag rests against the rock at right. In the background to the left, a sailing ship. Around above, the legend BRITANNIA. There is no indication of the value and denomination.

Subsequent coins were struck almost exclusively by the Royal Mint; its production was on a few occasions supplemented by Heaton and Sons in Birmingham.

The second reverse (1821 - 1864), designed by William Wyon, features a new rendition of Britannia; she is seated facing right, wearing a Corinthian helmet pushed back to reveal her face, resting her right hand on a shield bearing a saltire of arms, and holding a trident in her left hand. In the exergue, a rose, a thistle and a shamrock combined - the floral symbols of the constituent parts of the United Kingdom, respectively England, Scotland and Ireland.

Coins from the first issue of King George IV (1821 - 1826) display a larger figure of Britannia, with two additions: a lion reclining on her left side (only his head is visible in front of her left leg), and she holds an olive branch in her right hand, which she is resting on the shield. On these, the date is on the reverse and there is no floral arrangement in the exergue.

The reverse also bears part of the monarch's legend. As before, there is no indication of the coin's value and denomination.

The third reverse (1860 - 1895) has a new rendition of Britannia, by Leonard Charles Wyon. Again, she is wearing a crested Corinthian helmet pushed back to reveal her face, resting her right hand on a shield bearing the combined crosses of the Union Flag, and holding a trident in her left hand. In the background at right, a ship sailing away; at left, a lighthouse. Around above, interrupted by the crest of Britannia's helmet and her trident, the denomination FARTHING. In exergue, the date.

The fourth reverse (1895 - 1936) is a simplified version of the third, with the lighthouse and sailing ship removed from the background.

The fifth reverse (1937 - 1956) is a radical departure from the earlier traditions and features the image of a wren - the smallest British bird, as a symbol of the smallest denomination of British coinage. The date is above the bird, and the denomination FARTHING is around below.

Reverse Inscription FARTHING [year]
EdgePlainEdge InscriptionNone
Notes

There are also pattern farthings listed separately.

Coin Type: Farthing - (136) Coins (Page 1 of 2)
Coin NameReverseObverseDetails
Farthing 1806 United Kingdom / Farthing 1806 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1806 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Soho Mint
Mintage: unknown
Farthing 1807 United Kingdom / Farthing 1807 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1807 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Soho Mint
Mintage: unknown
Farthing 1821 United Kingdom / Farthing 1821 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1821 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,688,000
Farthing 1822 United Kingdom / Farthing 1822 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1822 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,924,352
Farthing 1823 United Kingdom / Farthing 1823 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1823 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,365,440
Farthing 1825 United Kingdom / Farthing 1825 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1825 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,300,800
Farthing 1826 (First Issue) United Kingdom / Farthing 1826 (First Issue) - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1826 (First Issue) - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 6,666,240
Farthing 1826 (Second Issue) United Kingdom / Farthing 1826 (Second Issue) - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1826 (Second Issue) - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 6,666,240
Farthing 1827 United Kingdom / Farthing 1827 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1827 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,365,440
Farthing 1828 United Kingdom / Farthing 1828 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1828 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,365,440
Farthing 1829 United Kingdom / Farthing 1829 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1829 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,505,280
Farthing 1830 United Kingdom / Farthing 1830 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1830 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,365,440
Farthing 1831 United Kingdom / Farthing 1831 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1831 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,688,000
Farthing 1834 United Kingdom / Farthing 1834 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1834 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,935,360
Farthing 1835 United Kingdom / Farthing 1835 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1835 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,720,320
Farthing 1836 United Kingdom / Farthing 1836 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1836 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,290,240
Farthing 1837 United Kingdom / Farthing 1837 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1837 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,010,560
Farthing 1838 United Kingdom / Farthing 1838 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1838 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 591,360
Farthing 1839 United Kingdom / Farthing 1839 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1839 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,300,800
Farthing 1840 United Kingdom / Farthing 1840 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1840 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,010,560
Farthing 1841 United Kingdom / Farthing 1841 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1841 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,720,320
Farthing 1842 United Kingdom / Farthing 1842 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1842 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,290,240
Farthing 1843 United Kingdom / Farthing 1843 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1843 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,085,760
Farthing 1844 United Kingdom / Farthing 1844 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1844 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 430,080
Farthing 1845 United Kingdom / Farthing 1845 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1845 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,225,600
Farthing 1846 United Kingdom / Farthing 1846 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1846 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,580,480
Farthing 1847 United Kingdom / Farthing 1847 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1847 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,879,720
Farthing 1848 United Kingdom / Farthing 1848 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1848 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,290,240
Farthing 1849 United Kingdom / Farthing 1849 - reverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 645,120
Farthing 1850 United Kingdom / Farthing 1850 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1850 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 430,080
Farthing 1851 United Kingdom / Farthing 1851 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1851 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,935,360
Farthing 1852 United Kingdom / Farthing 1852 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1852 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 822,528
Farthing 1853 United Kingdom / Farthing 1853 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1853 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,028,628
Farthing 1854 United Kingdom / Farthing 1854 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1854 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 6,504,960
Farthing 1855 United Kingdom / Farthing 1855 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1855 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,440,640
Farthing 1856 United Kingdom / Farthing 1856 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1856 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,771,392
Farthing 1857 United Kingdom / Farthing 1857 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1857 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,075,200
Farthing 1858 United Kingdom / Farthing 1858 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1858 - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,720,320
Farthing 1859 United Kingdom / Farthing 1859 - reverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,290,240
Farthing 1860 (Copper) United Kingdom / Farthing 1860 (Copper) - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1860 (Copper) - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: unknown
Farthing 1860 United Kingdom / Farthing 1860 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1860 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,867,200
Farthing 1861 United Kingdom / Farthing 1861 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1861 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 8,601,600
Farthing 1862 United Kingdom / Farthing 1862 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1862 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 14,336,000
Farthing 1863 United Kingdom / Farthing 1863 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1863 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,433,600
Farthing 1864 (Copper) United Kingdom / Farthing 1864 (Copper) - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1864 (Copper) - obverse photo Material: Copper
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: unknown
Farthing 1864 United Kingdom / Farthing 1864 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1864 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,508,800
Farthing 1865 United Kingdom / Farthing 1865 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1865 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,659,200
Farthing 1866 United Kingdom / Farthing 1866 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1866 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,584,000
Farthing 1867 United Kingdom / Farthing 1867 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1867 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,017,600
Farthing 1868 United Kingdom / Farthing 1868 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1868 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,851,208
Farthing 1869 United Kingdom / Farthing 1869 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1869 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,225,600
Farthing 1872 United Kingdom / Farthing 1872 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1872 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,150,400
Farthing 1873 United Kingdom / Farthing 1873 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1873 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,225,620
Farthing 1874 United Kingdom / Farthing 1874 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1874 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Heaton Mint
Mintage: 3,584,000
Farthing 1875 United Kingdom / Farthing 1875 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1875 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mints:
- Heaton Mint: 6,092,800
- Royal Mint: 712,760
Total Mintage: 6,805,560
Farthing 1876 United Kingdom / Farthing 1876 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1876 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Heaton Mint
Mintage: 1,175,200
Farthing 1877 (Proof only) Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: unknown
Farthing 1878 United Kingdom / Farthing 1878 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1878 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,008,540
Farthing 1879 United Kingdom / Farthing 1879 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1879 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,977,180
Farthing 1880 United Kingdom / Farthing 1880 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1880 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,842,710
Farthing 1881 United Kingdom / Farthing 1881 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1881 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mints:
- Royal Mint: 3,494,670
- Heaton Mint: 1,792,000
Total Mintage: 5,286,670
Farthing 1882 United Kingdom / Farthing 1882 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1882 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Heaton Mint
Mintage: 1,792,000
Farthing 1883 United Kingdom / Farthing 1883 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1883 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,128,680
Farthing 1884 United Kingdom / Farthing 1884 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1884 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,782,000
Farthing 1885 United Kingdom / Farthing 1885 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1885 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,442,308
Farthing 1886 United Kingdom / Farthing 1886 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1886 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 7,767,790
Farthing 1887 United Kingdom / Farthing 1887 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1887 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,340,800
Farthing 1888 United Kingdom / Farthing 1888 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1888 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 1,887,250
Farthing 1890 United Kingdom / Farthing 1890 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1890 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,133,070
Farthing 1891 United Kingdom / Farthing 1891 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1891 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,959,690
Farthing 1892 United Kingdom / Farthing 1892 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1892 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 887,240
Farthing 1893 United Kingdom / Farthing 1893 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1893 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,904,320
Farthing 1894 United Kingdom / Farthing 1894 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1894 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,396,770
Farthing 1895 (Young Head) United Kingdom / Farthing 1895 (Young Head) - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1895 (Young Head) - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,852,852
Farthing 1895 (Veiled Head) United Kingdom / Farthing 1895 (Veiled Head) - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1895 (Veiled Head) - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,852,852
Farthing 1896 United Kingdom / Farthing 1896 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1896 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,668,610
Farthing 1897 United Kingdom / Farthing 1897 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1897 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,579,800
Farthing 1898 United Kingdom / Farthing 1898 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1898 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,010,080
Farthing 1899 United Kingdom / Farthing 1899 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1899 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,864,616
Farthing 1900 United Kingdom / Farthing 1900 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1900 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,969,317
Farthing 1901 United Kingdom / Farthing 1901 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1901 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 8,016,459
Farthing 1902 United Kingdom / Farthing 1902 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1902 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,125,120
Farthing 1903 United Kingdom / Farthing 1903 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1903 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,331,200
Farthing 1904 United Kingdom / Farthing 1904 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1904 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 3,628,800
Farthing 1905 United Kingdom / Farthing 1905 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1905 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,076,800
Farthing 1906 United Kingdom / Farthing 1906 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1906 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,340,160
Farthing 1907 United Kingdom / Farthing 1907 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1907 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,399,360
Farthing 1908 United Kingdom / Farthing 1908 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1908 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,264,960
Farthing 1909 United Kingdom / Farthing 1909 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1909 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 8,852,480
Farthing 1910 United Kingdom / Farthing 1910 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1910 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 2,598,400
Farthing 1911 United Kingdom / Farthing 1911 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1911 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 5,196,800
Farthing 1912 United Kingdom / Farthing 1912 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1912 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 7,669,760
Farthing 1913 United Kingdom / Farthing 1913 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1913 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 4,184,320
Farthing 1914 United Kingdom / Farthing 1914 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1914 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 6,126,988
Farthing 1915 United Kingdom / Farthing 1915 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1915 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 7,129,254
Farthing 1916 United Kingdom / Farthing 1916 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1916 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 10,993,325
Farthing 1917 United Kingdom / Farthing 1917 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1917 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 21,434,844
Farthing 1918 United Kingdom / Farthing 1918 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1918 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 19,362,818
Farthing 1919 United Kingdom / Farthing 1919 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1919 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 15,089,425
Farthing 1920 United Kingdom / Farthing 1920 - reverse photo United Kingdom / Farthing 1920 - obverse photo Material: Bronze
Mint: Royal Mint
Mintage: 11,480,536
Showing 1 to 100 of 136 Coins.
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Farthing: Details
CountryUnited Kingdom
CurrencyPound Sterling (pre-decimal)
Sub-types Farthing (Britannia, first design)
Farthing (Britannia, second design)
Farthing (Britannia, third design)
Farthing (Britannia, fourth design)
Farthing (Wren)
From1806
To1956
Face Value1/4 (x Penny)
CurrentNo (demonetised 1961)
Material
Designer
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
ShapeRound
Size
Mass