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Halfpenny of Elizabeth I

This coin measures only 11mm in diameter but is shown greatly enlarged. It was found by Chris Mcloughlin, who had already identified it as a halfpenny of Elizabeth I.

This is one of the hammered silver coins that used to be very scarce until detectorists started to dig them up here, there and everywhere. They still couldn’t be described as common but thanks to detecting finds collectors now have far less difficulty in getting hold of specimens.

On one side is a portcullis with the mint mark above and on the others side a cross with three pellets in each angle. The mint mark isn’t clear and this can cause a problem, for James I halfpennies of the first coinage have exactly the same obverse and reverse. Fortunately, Chris had identified the mark on this halfpenny as a hand, which dates the coin to 1590-92.


Chris’s find is very slightly double struck and there is some deposit on the portcullis but the coin is otherwise in VF condition. In its present condition, bearing in my that it is no longer very scarce, I’d give it a price range of £70 – £90.

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