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Australia George V

1916-M  Florin reverse 1916-M  Florin obverse

1916-M Florin

Reverse Designer:W. H. J. Blakemore Obverse Designer:Sir E. B. MacKennel Size:28mm Weight:11.31g Edge:Reeded Composition:92.5% Silver
7.5% Copper


Sales History


After the outbreak of World War I in 1914 the Royal Mint in London became heavily involved in manufacturing military materials. This wartime necessity reduced the Mint's ability to fulfil Australia's demand for new currency. In 1914 and 1915 this problem was resolved by a number of additional coins being produced under contract by the private mint of Heaton & Sons in Birmingham. In late 1915 it was decided that production should shift to Australia and on the 1st of November the Melbourne Mint was instructed to prepare to strike silver coinage. New dies for the Australia Florin, Shilling, Sixpence and Threepence were produced in London for use at Melbourne Mint with a small 'M' mint-mark. Arrangements were also made for Australia's bronze coinage to be struck at the Royal Mint in Calcutta.

Melbourne 'M' mint-mark on a 1916-M Florin. Melbourne 'M' mint-mark on a 1916-M Florin.

In 1916 the first Australian struck Florins were produced at the Melbourne Mint. The total mintage for the year was 2,752,000 - the largest mintage of the series so far and a major technical challenge for Melbourne. The large Florin's caused substantial problems for the mint's small and weak presses which may account for some softness in the strike. Within the George V Florin series, the 1916-M marks a substantial turning point with most years following featuring large mintage's and reduced overall scarcity. The scale of this shift is well illustrated by PCGS population reports which show that twice as many 1916-M Florins have been graded compared to every preceding year in the series. This reduced scarcity across all grades makes the year a quite affordable year for interested collectors.

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