Shilling, King George IV Second Issue, Coin Type from United Kingdom - detailed information

Shilling, King George IV Second Issue, Coin Type from United Kingdom (issued 1823 - 1825)
Coin TypeShilling, King George IV Second Issue

The pre-decimal shilling (1s), also abbreviated in sums as e.g. 1/- for one shilling, was a unit of currency equalling one twentieth of a pound sterling, or twelve pence sterling; the "s" in the abbreviation is not from "shilling" but from "sestertius" - the Roman coin which was the ancestor of the denomination. It was used in the United Kingdom, and earlier in Great Britain and England.

This second type of shilling coins struck during the reign of King George IV was issued from 1823 to 1825 only. Its design is the same as the sixpence coin issued between 1823 and 1825; they only differ by their size and weight (the shilling is exactly double the weight of the sixpence). The reverse is similar to that of the King George III shilling, but the shield is more rectangular in shape and not so ornate.

The composition is Sterling Silver (0.925 silver) and the coins have 0.1682 oz ASW (ounce of Absolute Silver Weight). When the currency became decimal in 1971, shillings were re-denominated as five new pence; they remained legal tender until 1990, when a smaller type of five pence replaced them.

Obverse
United Kingdom / Shilling, King George IV Second Issue - obverse photo

Within a beaded border, the obverse of the coin depicts the laureate portrait of King George IV facing left.

The monarch's head is adorned by a laurel wreath, with a tie displaying a loop with two ends; his hair is short and the neck is bare; the portrait terminates at the neck, unlike on the farthing denomination here it also shows a tunic.

The artist's initials, B.P. (for Benedetto Pistrucci), are in small letters below the neck truncation.

Around left and right, the monarch's legend GEORGIUS IIII D: G: BRITANNIAR: REX F: D:, which is abbreviated from GEORGIVS IV DEI GRATIA BRITANNIARUM REX FIDEI DEFENSOR - translated from Latin, George the Fourth, by the Grace of God, King of the Britains, Defender of the Faith.

Obverse Inscription GEORGIUS IIII D: G: BRITANNIAR: REX F: D:
Reverse
United Kingdom / Shilling, King George IV Second Issue - reverse photo

The reverse of the coin shows the crowned shield bearing the Royal Arms of the United Kingdom within the Garter of the Order of the Garter, with the motto HONI · SOIT · QUI · MAL · Y · PENSE · inscribed on it.

"Honi soit qui mal y pense" is an Anglo-Norman maxim which means "Shame on whosoever would think badly of it," or "May he be shamed who thinks badly of it". Its literal translation from Old French is "Shame be to him who thinks evil of it."

The shield is quartered, depicting in the first and fourth quarters the three passant guardant lions of England; in the second, the rampant lion and double tressure flory-counterflory of Scotland; and in the third, a harp for Ireland. At centre, an escutcheon of the arms of the Kingdom of Hanover, of which King George IV was King as Georg IV. Augustus Friedrich; the shield is crowned with the Crown of Charlemagne - reflecting the King's role as Arch-Treasurer of the Holy Roman Empire.

The crown on top is St Edward's Crown, named after Saint Edward the Confessor, one of the last Anglo-Saxon kings of England. It has been traditionally used to crown English and British monarchs at their coronations since the 13th century, with a two-century gap between 1689 and 1911 so King George IV was not himself crowned with it.

Around below, the date of issue ANNO [year] (from Latin: Year [year]).

Reverse Inscription HONI · SOIT · QUI · MAL · Y · PENSE · ANNO [year]
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone
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Shilling, King George IV Second Issue: Details
CountryUnited Kingdom
CurrencyPound Sterling (pre-decimal)
Sub-type ofShilling
From1823
To1825
Face Value1 (x Shilling)
CurrentNo (demonetised 1990)
Material0.925 Silver
DesignerJean Baptiste Merlen
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
ShapeRound
OrientationCoin Alignment (Axis 6)
Size24.0000 mm
Mass5.6552 g
Shilling, King George IV Second Issue: Photos
ImageDetails
Coin - Shilling, George IV, Great Britain, 1824
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Source
Coin - Shilling, George IV, Great Britain, 1824
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Source