Sixpence, Coin Type from United Kingdom - detailed information

Sixpence, Coin Type from United Kingdom (issued 1816 - 1970)
Coin TypeSixpence

The pre-decimal sixpence (6d) was a unit of currency equalling one fortieth of a pound sterling, or six pence sterling. It was used in the United Kingdom, and earlier in Great Britain and England.

Prior to Decimal Day in 1971 there were 240 pence in one pound sterling. Twelve pence made a shilling, and twenty shillings made a pound. Values less than a pound were usually written in shillings and pence, e.g. 42 old pence would be three shillings and six pence (3/6), often pronounced "three and six". Values of less than a shilling were simply written in terms of pence, e.g. eight pence would be 8d.

The coin was made from silver from its introduction in 1551 to 1947 (first sterling until 1920, then debased to 50%), and thereafter in copper-nickel. The denomination went through many transformations of the reverse design during its existence (the obverse traditionally only shows the ruling monarch); it was finally abolished with the introduction of decimal currency.

Sixpences continued to be legal tender for a while after the currency became decimal in 1971, with a value of 2 1⁄2 new pence, until they were demonetised on 30th June 1980.

Obverse
United Kingdom / Sixpence - obverse photo

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

During the existence of the denomination, sixpence coins were issued for:
- King George III (1816 - 1820)
- King George IV (1821 - 1829)
- 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 - 1970)

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

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

The first design (1816 - 1820) shows the crowned and garnished shield bearing 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, partly obscured by the crown. The value and denomination are not written on the coin.

The second design (1821 only) shows the crowned and garnished shield bearing bearing the Royal Arms of the United Kingdom, are surrounded by a rose, thistle and shamrock - the floral emblems of England, Scotland and Ireland respectively. Around below, separated by the rose, the date of issue ANNO 1821 (from Latin: Year 1821). The value and denomination are not written on the coin.

The third design (1824 - 1826) shows the crowned and shield bearing 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. Around below, the date of issue ANNO [year]. The value and denomination are not written on the coin.

The fourth design (1826 - 1829) shows at its centre the Royal crest, depicting the Lion of England standing on St Edward's Crown. Below the crown, a rose, thistle and shamrock - the floral emblems of England, Scotland and Ireland respectively. The value and denomination are not written on the coin.

The fifth design (1831 - 1887) shows, within an open wreath of olive (left) and oak (right) branches, the value and denomination in words, on two lines: SIX PENCE. Above the value, St Edward's Crown. Below the ribbon tying the wreath, the date of issue: [year].

The sixth design (1887 only) again shows the crowned and garnished shield bearing 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. Below, the date 1887. Due to its similarity with the half sovereign and the fact that the denomination was not written on it, the design was immediately withdrawn and replaced with the next type.

The seventh design (1887 - 1910) shows the denomination within an open wreath and under a crown; it is similar to the fifth design, with the most visible difference being the shape of the crown.

The eighth design (1911 - 1927) again features St Edward's Crown surmounted by the crowned Lion of England, similar to the fourth reverse. The date of issue [year] is within the central circle, divided by the crown. Around below, the denomination (as one word): SIXPENCE.

The ninth design (1927 - 1936) shows six intertwined sprigs of oak, ending with six acorns. Around above, interrupted by two of the acorns, the value and denomination · SIXPENCE ·. Around below, the date of issue · A · [year] · D ·

The tenth design (1937 - 1948) features the crowned royal cypher of King George VI, GRI for GEORGIVS REX IMPERATOR - "George King and Emperor" - dividing the date: [year].

The eleventh design (1948 - 1952) features an updated crowned royal cypher of King George VI, GR VI for GEORGIVS SEXTUS - "George the Sixth" - dividing the date: [year]. The change was made due to the Independence of India, after which the monarch had no claim to the title of Emperor of India.

The twelfth and final design (1953 - 1970) shows four interlinked plants: rose, thistle, shamrock and leek, each with a leaf from the same stem. These represent the four constituent countries of the United Kingdom - England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales respectively. Around below, the denomination as two words: SIX PENCE, followed by the date of issue · [year].

Reverse Inscription SIX PENCE [year]
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone
Notes

Various British colonies, dominions and dependencies also issued their own versions of the sixpence denomination, usually to be used in parallel with their Imperial counterpart and with compatible dimensions and composition but sometimes made deliberately different. For these, see:

- British West Africa, Sixpence - issued 1913 to 1952, demonetised 1968
- Australia, Sixpence - issued 1910 to 1963, withdrawn 1966 (not demonetised); replaced by compatible Five Cents - still being issued and current
- New Zealand, Sixpence - issued 1933 to 1965, demonetised 2006; replaced by compatible Five Cents issued 1967 to 2006, demonetised 2006
- Fiji, Sixpence - issued 1934 to 1967, demonetised 1969; replaced by compatible Five Cents issued 1969 to 2006, demonetised 2009
- New Guinea, Sixpence - with central hole, issued 1935 and 1943, demonetised 1966
- Nigeria, Sixpence - issued 1959 only, demonetised 1973

Coin Type: Sixpence - (151) Coins (Page 2 of 2)
Coin NameMintageEffigyLegend
Sixpence 1919 13,375,447 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1920 14,136,287 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1921 30,339,741 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1922 16,878,896 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1923 6,382,793 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1924 17,444,218 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1925 12,720,558 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1926 21,809,621 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1927 Lion on Crown 68,939,873 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX
Sixpence 1927 Oak Leaves (Proof only) 15,000 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1928 23,123,384 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1929 28,319,326 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1930 16,990,289 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1931 16,873,268 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1932 9,406,117 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1933 22,185,083 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1934 9,304,009 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1935 13,995,621 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1936 24,380,171 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sixpence 1937 22,328,926 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1938 13,402,701 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1939 28,670,304 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1940 20,875,196 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1941 23,086,616 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1942 44,942,785 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1943 46,927,111 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1944 37,952,600 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1945 39,939,259 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1946 43,466,407 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1947 29,993,263 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1948 88,323,540 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1949 41,355,515 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1950 32,759,468 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1951 40,419,491 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1952 1,013,477 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX
Sixpence 1953 70,363,876 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA BRITT: OMN: REGINA
Sixpence 1954 105,241,150 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1955 109,929,554 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1956 109,841,555 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1957 150,654,290 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1958 123,518,527 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1959 93,089,441 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1960 103,288,346 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1961 115,052,017 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1962 178,359,637 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1963 112,964,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1964 152,336,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1965 129,644,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1966 175,696,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1967 240,788,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Sixpence 1970 (Proof only) 750,476 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait + ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA
Showing 101 to 151 of 151 Coins.
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Sixpence: Photos
ImageDetails
Coin - Sixpence, George III, Great Britain, 1817
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: George III (1816 - 1820).
Source
Coin - Sixpence, George IV, Great Britain, 1821
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: George IV, First reverse (1821).
Source
Great Britain 1824 6 pence
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Author:
Notes: George IV, Second reverse (1824 - 1826).
Source
Coin - Sixpence, George IV, Great Britain, 1829
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: George IV, Third reverse (1826 - 1829).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, William IV, Great Britain, 1831
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: First wreath design (1831 - 1887).
Source
Great Britain 1887 6 Pence
Copyright: smarty_marty24
Notes: Withdrawn type (1887).
Source
Great Britain 1906 6 pence
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Author:
Notes: Second wreath design (1887 - 1910).
Source
Great Britain 1911 6 pence
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Notes: Lion on Crown reverse (1911 - 1927).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, George V, Great Britain, 1928
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Oak leaves reverse (1927 - 1936).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, George VI, Great Britain, 1947
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: King George VI, First design (1937 - 1948).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, Elizabeth II, Great Britain, 1953
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Queen Elizabeth II (1953 - 1970).
Source
Great Britain 1952 6 pence
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Author:
Notes: King George VI, Second design (1949 - 1952).
Source
Coin - Sixpence, George III, Great Britain, 1817
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: King George III (1816 - 1820).
Source
Great Britain 1824 6 pence
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Author:
Notes: King George IV, Laureate head (1821 - 1826).
Source
Coin - Sixpence, George IV, Great Britain, 1829
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: George IV, Bare head (1826 - 1829).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, William IV, Great Britain, 1831
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: King William IV (1831 - 1837).
Source
Coin - Sixpence, Queen Victoria, Great Britain, 1838
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Queen Victoria, Young head (1838 - 1887).
Source
Great Britain 1887 6 Pence
Copyright: smarty_marty24
Notes: Queen Victoria, Jubilee head (1887 - 1893).
Source
Coin - Sixpence, Queen Victoria, Great Britain, 1900
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Queen Victoria, Veiled head (1893 - 1901).
Source
Great Britain 1906 6 pence
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Author:
Notes: King Edward VII (1902 - 1910).
Source
Great Britain 1911 6 pence
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Notes: King George V, first effigy (1911 - 1926).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, George V, Great Britain, 1928
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: King George V, modified effigy (1926 - 1936).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, George VI, Great Britain, 1947
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: King George VI (1937 - 1952).
Source
Proof Coin - Sixpence, Elizabeth II, Great Britain, 1953
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Queen Elizabeth II BRITT OMN REGINA (1953).
Source
Coin - Sixpence, Elizabeth II, Great Britain, 1966
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Queen Elizabeth II REGINA (1954 - 1970).
Source