Halfpennies

Characteristics
Diameter
25.4mm (1")
Weight
5.67g (1/5 oz)
Composition
Bronze: Cu 97.5%,
Zn 2.0%, Sn 0.5%

As for the pennies, the most authoritative classification of the halfpennies is probably that of Paul Holland in his articles8,11 published in the Australian numismatic journals and this presentation relies heavily on those works.

Contents:

Obverse master die types
Reverse master die types
Die pairings & catalogue index
Obverse master die types

Obverse 1

Designed by Bertram McKennal, this obverse was used on all halfpennies from 1911 to 1936 inclusive.

156 rim denticles.


Obverse 2

Indian quarter anna, used for a very small number of 1916 halfpennies.


Obverse 3

Designer was Thomas (Hugh) Paget. This obverse was used for Australian halfpennies from 1938 to 1948 and is identical to that used on British halfpennies 1937-1948.

147 rim denticles.


Obverse 4

Legend was modified to remove IND IMP since India had become independent in 1947. F D expanded to FIDEI DEF. Used for all halfpennies 1949-50, the London issue of 1951 and most of the Perth 1951 coins.

146 rim denticles. All the letters "I" are aligned with denticles.


Obverse 5

Very similar to obverse 4. Used for some of the 1951 Perth halfpennies and all the 1952 coins.

149 rim denticles. The letters "I" in FIDEI are aligned with gaps between denticles.


Obverse 6

First of the obverses to show Mary Gillick's portrait of Elizabeth II. Used at the Perth Mint for halfpennies dated 1953-55.

Rim embellishment comprises 112 round beads.

The omission of FD (Fidei Defensor) caused a bit of a stir akin to that which followed the omission of DG (Dei Gratia) on the 1849 British "godless" florin.


Obverse 7

FD restored to legend. Used at Perth and Melbourne Mints for halfpennies dated 1956-64.

110 rim beads.

Reverse master die types

Reverse A

Used for all Australian halfpennies from 1911 until 1939. Designer was W.H.J. Blakemore.

148 rim denticles.


Reverse B

Introduced in late 1939, this reverse by George Kruger Gray was used at all mints of issue until 1962.

Alternating thick and thin rim denticles, 106 of each. "H" aligned with thin denticles.


Reverse C

Used only at the Bombay mint for most of the 1942 issue. Very similar to reverse B but with minor differences in the lettering and in the detail of the kangaroo's head. The kangaroo is also in noticeably lower profile than on reverse B. Dots before and after HALF PENNY.

Alternating thick and thin rim denticles, 106 of each.


Reverse D

Used only at the Bombay mint for part of the 1942 issue and all of the 1943 issue, this reverse features much taller denticles than reverse C. Dots before and after HALF PENNY.

Alternating thick and thin rim denticles, 104 of each.


Reverse E

Very similar to reverse B but the alignment of the letters differs.

Alternating thick and thin rim denticles, 104 of each. "H" aligned with wide denticles.

Differences between the type B and C reverses


The serifs on the reverse legend are more pronounced on the type C reverse (bottom) than on the type B reverse (top).
Title


Different treatment of the kangaroo's face.

The originating mints in this table for the years 1919-1926 are provisional. I need to check the mint records to verify these and I have not done this at the time of writing (25/3/2002).

Master die pairings for Australian halfpennies
Year
Obv
Rev
Mint
Variety
Rarity
Notes
1911
1
A
London
Common
1912
1
A
Heaton & Son
Common
1913
1
A
London
Date variations
Common
1914
1
A
London
Common
1
A
Heaton & Son
Common
1915
1
A
Heaton & Son
Common
1916
1
A
Calcutta
Common
2
A
Calcutta
Extremely rare
Mule
1917
1
A
Calcutta
Common
1918
1
A
Calcutta
Common
1919
1
A
Sydney
Common
1920
1
A
Sydney
Common
1921
1
A
Sydney
Common
1922
1
A
Sydney
Common
1923
1
A
Melbourne
Scarce
1924
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1925
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1926
1
A
Melb, Syd
Common
1927
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1928
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1929
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1930
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1931
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1932
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1933
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1934
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1935
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1936
1
A
Melbourne
Common
1938
3
A
Melbourne
Common
1939
3
A
Melbourne
Common
3
B
Melbourne
Scarce
1940
3
B
Melbourne
Common
1941
3
B
Melbourne
Common
1942
3
B
Melbourne
Scarce
3
B
Perth
Dot after Y
Common
3
C
Bombay
I below bust
Common
3
D
Bombay
I below bust
Rare
Tall denticles
1943
3
B
Melbourne
Common
3
D
Bombay
I below bust
Common
1944
3
B
Melbourne
Common
1945
3
B
Perth
Y.
Common
3
B
Perth
Common
No dot
1946
3
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1947
3
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1948
3
B
Melbourne
Common
3
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1949
4
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1950
4
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1951
4
B
London, Heaton
PL
Common
4
B
Perth
Y.
Common
4
B
Perth
Scarce
No dot
5
B
Perth
Y.
Common
5
B
Perth
Scarce
No dot
1952
5
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1953
6
B
Perth
A.
Common
1954
6
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1955
6
B
Perth
Common
1959
7
B
Melbourne
Common
7
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1960
7
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1961
7
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1962
7
B
Perth
Y.
Common
1963
7
E
Perth
Y.
Common
1964
7
E
Perth
Y.
Common

[ Top | Halfpennies | Australian coins | Home Page ]

Visitors:


Created: 31st December 2000, the last day of the 20th century and of the 2nd millennium.
Modified: 23rd September 2002 - Completed the die table.
Copyright ©2000-2002 Triton Technologies International Ltd. All Rights Reserved.