Ceylon, British: Coins Issued and Used

Showing only circulating coin types (regular coinage plus circulating commemoratives).

Ceylon, British (1796 - 1972)
Information about what currencies were issued by Ceylon, British, with lists of coinage, as well as periods when foreign-issued currencies were used.
Currency: Ceylonese Rixdollar. Used in Ceylon, British: (1796 - 1828)
CurrencyCeylonese Rixdollar
PeriodCeylonese Rixdollar
Used1796 - 1828

The Rixdollar was the currency of British Ceylon until 1828. It was subdivided into 48 stivers, each of 4 duit. Units called the fanam and larin were also used, worth 4 and 9½ stiver, respectively. The currency derived from the Dutch rijksdaalder and stuiver, although the rijksdaalder was worth 50 stuiver. The rixdollar was replaced by the British pound at a rate of 1 rixdollar = 1 shilling 6 pence.

The Netherlands United East India Company (VOC) issued coins during the 18th century in denominations of  1⁄8 and 1 duit,  1⁄4, 1, 2 and  4 3⁄4 stuiver and 1 rixdollar.

After the British took over Ceylon, dump coins (crudely struck copper pieces) were introduced in 1801 retaining the Dutch denominations of  1⁄48,  1⁄24 and  1⁄12 rixdollar. In 1802, milled, copper coins for  1⁄192,  1⁄96 and  1⁄48 rixdollar were added, although the dump coins continued to be produced until 1816. Silver coins were introduced in 1803 for 24, 48 and 96 stivers.

In 1815, copper  1⁄2, 1 and 2 stuiver coins were issued, equal in value to the  1⁄96,  1⁄48 and  1⁄24 rixdollar denominations. Silver rixdollar coins were issued in 1821.

Currency: Ceylonese Rupee. Used in Ceylon, British: (1870 - 1972)
CurrencyCeylonese Rupee
PeriodCeylonese Rupee
Used1870 - 1972

The Indian rupee was made Ceylon's standard coin on 26 September 1836, and Ceylon reverted to the Indian currency area. Pound-denominated treasury notes continued to circulate after 1836, along with the rupee. The legal currency remained British silver and accounts were kept in pounds, shillings and pence. However, payments were made in rupees and annas at the "fictitious par" (fixed accounting rate) of 2 shillings per rupee (i.e., 1 pound = 10 rupees).

The Bank of Ceylon was the first private bank to issue banknotes on the island (1844) and Treasury notes were withdrawn in 1856.

The Indian rupee was formally established as the unlimited legal tender 18 June 1869. The rupee was decimalized 23 August 1871. Thus, the rupee of 100 cents became Ceylon's money of account and sole legal tender effective 1 January 1872, replacing British currency at a rate of 1 rupee = 2 shillings 3 pence.

9 products (1870 - 1957)
Product NameMintage
Quarter Cent 1870 unknown
Quarter Cent 1890 unknown
Half Cent 1901 unknown
One Cent 1910 unknown
Twenty-five Cents 1922 unknown
One Cent 1929 unknown
Five Cents 1943 unknown
One Cent 1945 unknown
One Rupee 1957 unknown
Royal Mint
Royal Mint