Shilling, Three Shields, Coin Type from United Kingdom - detailed information

Shilling, Three Shields, Coin Type from United Kingdom (issued 1893 - 1901)
Coin TypeShilling, Three Shields

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 type of shilling was introduced when the earlier "shield" type of shilling" was discontinued only five years after its introduction. For the first time, the designs of the smaller silver denominations diverged and this type of shilling looks different from the sixpence issued at the same time; instead, it matches the florin (two shillings). Its reverse represents England, Ireland and Scotland - constituent parts of the United Kingdom; Wales is not represented.

This design was short lived too, and was superseded by a Lion on Crown type at the beginning of the reign of King Edward VII in 1902.

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, Three Shields - obverse photo

The obverse of the coin features the crowned bust of Queen Victoria facing left and wearing a widows's veil in mourning for her husband Prince Albert - her last official effigy (by Sir Thomas Brock), known also as the Veiled Head or Old Head.

The veil of a widow falls over the back of her crown; she wears a pearl necklace and a pendant; on the left lapel of the mantle, exhibited full-face, is the ribbon and Star of the Garter, part of the outer edge of which is covered by the veil.

In the field below the bust in small letters are the artist's initials T.B..

Around, the monarch's legend: VICTORIA · DEI · GRA · BRITT · REGINA · FID · DEF · IND · IMP ·. Translated from Latin: Victoria, by the Grace of God, of the Britains Queen, Defender of the Faith, Empress of India.

Obverse Inscription VICTORIA · DEI · GRA · BRITT · REGINA · FID · DEF · IND · IMP ·
Reverse
United Kingdom / Shilling, Three Shields - reverse photo

There reverse of the coin features, partly within the Garter of the Order of the Garter, three shields with the arms of England (top left) featuring three lions walking to left, Scotland (top right) featuring a rampant lion, and Ireland (below) featuring a harp, each crowned with St Edward's crown. Between the shields, a rose (above), thistle (below left) and shamrock (below right), the floral emblems of England, Scotland and Ireland respectively.

The Garter surrounding the shields is inscribed with the Royal motto HONI · SOIT · QUI · MAL · Y · PENSE ·, partly obscured by the shields. "Honi soit qui mal y pense" is an Anglo-Norman maxim which means "Shame on whosoever would think badly of it".

The Garter is surrounded by a beaded circle. In the outer rim, around above the value and denomination ONE SHILLING; below, divided by the pendant of the Garter, the date of issue [year].

Reverse Inscription ONE SHILLING [year] HONI · SOIT · QUI · MAL · Y · PENSE ·
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone
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Shilling, Three Shields: Details
CountryUnited Kingdom
CurrencyPound Sterling (pre-decimal)
Sub-type ofShilling
From1893
To1901
Face Value1 (x Shilling)
CurrentNo (demonetised 1990)
Material0.925 Silver
DesignerEdward Poynter
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
ShapeRound
OrientationMedal Alignment (Axis 0)
Size23.500 mm
Mass5.655 g
Shilling, Three Shields: Photos
ImageDetails
Proof Coin - Shilling, Queen Victoria, Great Britain, 1893
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Common reverse (1893 - 1901).
Source
Proof Coin - Shilling, Queen Victoria, Great Britain, 1893
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Queen Victoria (1893 - 1901).
Source