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Australia George V

1934  Half Penny reverse 1934  Half Penny obverse

1934 Half Penny

Reverse Designer:W. H. J. Blakemore Obverse Designer:Sir E. B. MacKennel Size:26mm Weight:5.67g Edge:Plain Composition:97% Copper
2.5% Zinc
0.5% Tin


Sales History


The 1934 half penny is one of the more common dates in the series but one should not underestimate how difficult the coin is to acquire in MS64 and higher. The coin typically suffers from surface hairlines which tend to preclude higher gradings and it is the only year of the 1930s that is occasionally struck up with missing detail. The cause here isn't a weak strike however, but rather from details being polished off the dies.

Missing band detail on the obverse of a 1934 half penny Missing band detail on the obverse of a 1934 half penny

The reason for this exception is because in 1934, the Melbourne mint for the first time began to mass produce commercial proofs - this required the repeated polishing of the dies resulting in the eventual erosion of detail. By the time these dies had finished producing the proof strikes and were sent to work on the standard production line, they had lost much of their finer detail, which shows on the circulation strikes. The date can at times also suffer from a soft N of ONE in the form of a central strike weakness displaced upwards as typical for George V half pennies due to the uneven distribution of metal of the obverse design.

Soft N of ONE on the reverse of a 1934 half penny Soft N of ONE on the reverse of a 1934 half penny

This is caused by the lack of concavity in the proof die needed to produce mirror finish of the proof strike being paired with the low pressure standard production line. In 1934 the Melbourne mint also produced the first commercial proof half penny.

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