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British Colonial India 1919.


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I've been collecting colonial coins for about 25 years now and thought I'd start up a running thread detailing some of them which hopefully will be interesting and informative to newbie collectors in this area.

The year set I'm going to present is 1919..

George V Coinage from 1911-1936..

An easy series to collect with very few variants...

George V was crowned on June 22nd 1911 following the death of his father Edward VII.


The engraver was Sir Edgar Bertram Mackenna (1863-1931) an Australian sculptor and medallist who won the commission for the obverse design of the monarch's head on the new coinage from 1911 and also the English postage stamps depicting the kings portrait. In 1921 he became the first Australian born artist to be knighted. He died suddenly in 1931 in Torquay Devon England, as it happens not far from where I grew up..


Well it all started off badly! The coins minted in 1911 were known as PIG coins, they were called this because of the depiction of a small elephant on the kings robe. This potrayal was thought to resemble a pig rather than an elephant. This offended some of the religious factions at the time and so these coins were withheld and a large number were melted down, and in 1912 a new redesigned elephant obverse was used. The denominations minted in 1911 were One Rupee, Half Rupee, Quarter Rupee, Two Annas and 1/4 Anna. ...Here are the 2 representations - pig or elephant? 😏


Lets start with the smallest denomination..

1/12 Anna = 1/192 INR..

Bronze..1.65 g..17.4 mm diameter..Edge plain.

Mintage of the 1/12 Anna didn't start until 1912..
Only 2 mints produced coins for George V and the mint dates for the 1/12 Anna are as follows..
Bombay....1923-1928........ 1936 Mint mark is a small raised dot below the date
Calcutta..1912-1921....1923-1936 No Mintmark
Note..As you can see there were no 1/12 Annas dated 1922..
Key date was 1926 Calcutta with the lowest Mintage 4,147,200...
See example mintmark/No mintmark below..


Here's my example..
1/12 Anna..1919 Calcutta....Mintage 17,472,000....KM#509



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The next denomination is the 1/2 Pice KM# 510.

This will be a short post as these are an easy denomination to collect...

1/2 Pice = 21mm diameter..2.4gr...Edge Plain...Bronze..

Minted only at Calcutta each year from 1912-1936 no mintmark...(No 1911 Pig coin was minted)

Key date coin 1925 with lowest mintage 3,980,800...

Here is my scraggy old 1/2 Pice coin of 1919 KM# 510....Have kept this one for many years..sentimental reasons...


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Next up is the 1/4 Anna...KM# 511/512...

1/4 Anna = 1 Pice....25mm diameter..4.85gr..Edge Plain..Bronze..
First minted at Calcutta in 1911 KM# 511...These coins were known as Pig coins, due to the small elephant design on the kings robe supposedly resembling a pig...Although the mintage number was high, at just under 56 million, a lot of these date coins were melted down....Minting commenced again in 1912 with new dies depicting a true to life elephant!. 🤐....Here are some photo comparisons, see what you think?...


From 1912 the Mints and dates are as follows...
Calcutta..1912-1914...1916-1920...1925-1931...1933-1936....No Mintmark.
Bombay....1924-1928...1930.....1936...Mintmark is a small raised dot just below the date.
As you can see above no coins (for circulation) were dated 1915, 1921, 1922, 1923, 1932..Although there were some Proof coins..
The key date coin is 1916 with the lowest mintage 1,632,000

There is one variation (That I know of) in this series, apart from the Pig coin. The 1930 Bombay coin had two date types, a wide and narrow type...See Ref below..


Here is my example 1919 Calcutta 1/4 Anna KM# 512

Note...I picked up this example because the elephant is well detailed even showing the ear...



Edited by Spaniard
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Moving out of the bronze coinage, the next denomination is the 1 Anna..

1 Anna = 21mm diameter - Scalloped with 12 notches...3.8gr...Edge plain...Cupro-Nickel..KM#513
Along each outer side of the reverse is the value written in one of the four native languages Urdu, Telugu, Nagari and Bengali.

Bombay Mint
1912-1920 With no mint mark.
1923-1928 Mint mark dot under date.
1935-1936 Mint mark dot under date.

Calcutta Mint
1919 Proof coin only, no Mint Mark.
1924-1930 No Mint Mark.
1933-1936 No Mint Mark.
As you can see this denomination was not minted with the dates 1921, 1922, 1931, 1932...
Key date 1928 Bombay with lowest mintage 4,831,600

0ne variant I know of is the date design of the 1935 Bombay coin...
The number 1 in the date has either a curved or straight bottom. Also the top angular line differs, see detail below...


Here is my example 1919 Bombay 1 Anna KM#513..Mintage 122,794,534..Note this is Bombay mint without the usual dot below date Mint Mark..




Next up is the 2 Annas.....
There were two types of 2 Annas minted for George V...
Type 1..From 1911 (Pig coin KM#514) to 1917 the 2 Annas coins were minted from .917 silver...15mm diameter..1.45gr..Edge plain..KM#515
Bombay Mint...1912-1915 Mint-mark a small raised dot below bottom flower.
Calcutta Mint.1911-1917 No mint-mark
Key date coin..Bombay 1912 with lowest mintage of 2,462,092
See example below KM#515...(not my coin)



Due to the increased price in silver these coins were discontinued in 1917 and in 1918 replaced with a new quadranguler Cupro-Nickel coin...
Type 2...Two Annas (Cupro-Nickel)...21mm x 21mm quadranguler...5.80gr...Edge plain...KM#516
On the reverse is the value written in one of the four native languages Urdu, Telugu, Nagari and Bengali.
Bombay Mint...
1920 (Proof coin only).
Calcutta Mint...
1921 and 1922 (Proof coins only).
As you can see this denomination was not minted with the dates 1931, 1932...
Key date coin ...1924 Bombay with lowest Mintage 2,927,448
Here is my example 1919 Two Annas...Calcutta...25.5 mm diameter...5.75gr....Mintage 89,040,000..KM#516...




Next up is the 1/4 Rupee...
1/4 Rupee = 4 Annas....19mm diameter...2.92 gr...Reeded edge...Silver .917
Calcutta Mint..
1911 KM#517(pig coin)..1912-1919....1926....1929-1930...1934...1936 KM#518 No mint mark.
Bombay Mint....
1912-1915...1925...1928...1936 KM#518 Mint mark small raised dot below bottom flower.
Key Date coin 1915 Calcutta with lowest Mintage 851,618


A small variation is referenced on the 1936 Bombay mint coin...Small diamond control marks behind the bust...See detail below.

As far as I can tell the control marks don't seem to change the intrinsic value of the coin and are usually not even mentioned in the coins description...Saying that maybe a hardened collector would look for a particular control mark to fill a hole?...Also the control mark coins seem to be as common as those coins without...


Note.. Between 1919 to 1921, due again to the increased price of silver, a new Cupro-Nickel 4 Annas coin was minted. Although it was discontinued in 1921 it remained as legal tender....
I will present the 4 Annas in the next post...

Here's my example 1919 1/4 Rupee..Calcutta..Mintage 26,135,436..KM#518


Next up is the 4 Annas KM#519 = (1/4 Rupee)....
4 Annas = 24mm diameter (Scalloped with 8 notches)....6.8grams...Edge plain...Cupro-Nickel....
Along each outer side of the reverse is the value written in one of the four native languages Urdu (top), Telugu (bottom), Nagari (left) and Bengali (right).

Note...These Cupro-Nickel (Low quality metal) coins were introduced, again due to the increased price in silver, to replace the 1/4 Rupee and were only minted for three years 1919-1921. Although it was discontinued in 1921 it remained as legal tender, this being the reason why these coins are generally found to be quite worn, the price increases dramatically for a well detailed specimen. The silver 1/4 Rupee was re-introduced in 1925...

Calcutta Mint...KM#519
1919-1920. No Mintmark
1921 Proof coin only. No Mintmark
Bombay Mint.....KM#519
1919-1921. Mintmark is a small raised dot at the bottom of the reverse below the Teluga script. See detail below....
Key Date coin...1921 Bombay with lowest Mintage 1,219,100


Here are my examples (Please excuse bad photography)..When I photograph the 1919 set together, at the end of this presentation, hopefully I'll be able to produce a decent picture!
Calcutta...1919 4 Annas KM#519...Mintage 18,632,006
Bombay.....1919 4 Annas KM#519...Mintage 7,672,000




Edited by Spaniard
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Following on with the Silver 1/2 Rupee = 8 Annas.

1/2 Rupee KM#521/522...24mm diameter....5.8 grams....Edge reeded...Silver .917

Calcutta Mint...No Mintmark.
1911 KM#521(Pig coin)...1912-1916....1921-1927....1929-1930....1933-1934...1936....KM#522

Bombay Mint...Raised dot below bottom flower.

Key date coin..1914 Bombay with lowest mintage 903,377


NOTE..As you can see there were no coins minted in 1931-1932, but apparently there were dies made for the year 1932 and supposedly the '2' was overstruck with a '3'...These coins being referenced as a 1933/2 date coin and IF they exist are extremely rare!. I've never seen one of these coins in the real but have seen a few images of coins pertaining to be it. Here's one, but I'm still not convinced!...Any thoughts?


All references have this type listed but there never seems to be an image to back it up thats clear?
I must admit there is something definitely going on with the last 3 on the PCGS coin ?...
There does seem to be a horizontal line at the base of the 3 but the diagonal line of the 2 marked in blue doesn't seem to be there? There is also a definite difference between the two 3s' as the central horizontal V between the two radii is much closer to the top and protrudes much more horizontally.




Note.. From 1919 to 1920, due again to the increased price of silver, a new Cupro-Nickel 8 Annas coin was minted to replace the 1/2 Rupee. I will present the 8 Annas in the next post...

Here is my example..1919 Bombay 1/2 Rupee..KM#522



Moving onto the Cupro-Nickel 8 Annas = 1/2 Rupee..

8 Annas = 26mm diameter....7.8gr...Edge plain....Cupro=Nickel...KM#520
Along each outer side of the reverse is the value written in one of the four native languages Urdu (top), Telugu (bottom), Nagari (left) and Bengali (right).

Note...These Cupro-Nickel coins were introduced in 1919, due to the increased price in silver, to replace the silver 1/2 Rupee and were only minted for two years 1919-1920. It was disliked by the populace and the government soon realised it was being heavily faked! It was discontinued in 1920, although remaining as legal tender until 1924.
The silver 1/2 Rupee was again re-introduced in 1921...

Calcutta Mint...No Mintmark.KM#520
1919..(Mintage 2,979,980)
1920 (Proof coin only)

Bombay Mint....Mintmark raised dot on reverse below Teluga script..KM#520
1919..Mintage 1,400,000
1920..Mintage 1,000,000

key date coin 1920 Bombay mint with lowest mintage 1,000,000

Here is my example...1919 Bombay 8 Annas..Mintage 1,400,000..KM#520
Has slight wood graining on the obverse which I really like but doesn't look as strong in hand...But not everyones cup of tea!



To finish off the George V 1919 series is the 1 Rupee = 16 Annas

1 Rupee KM#523/524 = 31mm diameter...11.65gr...Edge reeded...Silver .917..


Calcutta Mint..No Mintmark.
1911 KM#523(pig coin)...1912-1920...1935-1936(proof coin only).KM#524
Note..Calcutta continued minting Rupees from 1920-1923 with the frozen date of 1920.

Bombay Mint..Mintmark a raised dot below bottom flower.
1911 KM#523(pig coin)..1912-1922...KM#524

Key date coin..1922 Bombay with lowest mintage 2,051,150

Here are my examples...
1919 1 Rupee Calcutta Mintage 211,206,255....KM#524
1919 1 Rupee Bombay Mintage 226,706,054....KM#524


I do hope everyone has found this series interesting..I've actually enjoyed putting this date series together and its quite an easy and cheap set to collect..(The next set I'll be presenting is Edward VII).....Paul

Here's my George V 1919 set together.....


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