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The Silver Coins of England

Edward Hawkins, 1841
Sole Monarchs of England - William and Mary

Table of Contents

William and Mary., 1688 to 1695.

When William and Mary were called to ascend the throne vacated by the abdication of James II., they adopted the same principles for the construction of their coinage, as had been acted upon by their immediate predecessors, and resolved upon issuing pieces of the same denominations, size, value, and fineness. For some time half-crowns were the only kind issued with the exception of the maundy money, but in our description we will pursue our usual plan of commencing with the larger pieces.

Crowns: Upon these are the busts of the king and queen to the right, the shoulders draped, he laureate, GVLIELMVS ET MARIA DEI GRATIA. Rev. The four shields are arranged crosswise as before, but have the shield of Nassau in the centre, round it are the numerals 1691, and in the angles W and M interlinked. Legend in continuation of that upon the obverse MAG. BR. FR ET HI REX ET REGINA, of this there are three varieties. 1691. TERTIO. MB. 1692. QVARTO. Rud. xxxv. 9. Sn. xvii. 37. MB. 1692 QVINTO. MB. At Mr. Rich's sale, 1828, one dated 1691, in which the busts are said to have been "unusually prominent and fine," sold for 3..19.; at Mr. Edmonds, 2..4.; others not so prominent have sold for 1..1. or 1..8.

Half-Crowns: Busts of king and queen to the right, shoulders draped, he laureate; legend as on crown. Rev. Square shield crowned bearing quarterly, 1. England, 2. Scotland, 3. Ireland, and 4. France, Nassau on an escutcheon of pretence. This is probably the only instance of the arms of France being placed in the fourth quarter; and if the artist made a blunder, we can scarcely account for the master of the mint and privy council allowing it to pass. Legend as on crowns, date 1689, PRIMO; of this there are differently executed crowns; one has the caul and interior, frosted. MB. Another has the caul, not the interior, frosted. MB. Another has not any frosting either upon the caul or interior. Rud. xxxv. 14. Sn. xvii. 30. MB. The next half-crown is similar to the preceding, except that the shield bears 1 and 4 England and France quarterly, 2. Scotland, 3. Ireland, and in an escutcheon of pretence, Nassau; date 1689, caul frosted. MB. without any frosting. Rud. xxxv. 13. Sn. xvii. 29. 1690. SECVNDO, crown smooth. 1690. TERTIO. MB. The following year the type of the half- crown is altered, the arms are arranged and accompanied as upon the crowns, as are also the busts, which are broader and of a different style of workmanship from the preceding. Of these we have 1691. TERTIO. MB. 1692. QVARTO. 1692. QVINTO. MB. 1693. QVINTO. Rud. xxxv. 12. MB. On the half-crowns of 1692 the numerals are placed consecutively round the Nassau shield; upon all the other pieces of this type they are rather in two lines, so as to be read without turning the coin.

Shillings: Resemble in type the crowns, but the busts are formed more after the model of the earlier half-crowns, the edges are milled; the dates are 1692. MB. 1693. Rud. xxxv. 10. Sn. xvii. 22. MB.

Sixpences: Same as the shillings in type, but dated 1693. MB. 1694. Rud. xxxv. 11. Sn. xvii. 15. MB.

Groats: Busts without drapery, hair short, his head laureate, D. G. instead of DEI GRATIA. Rev. The figure 4 crowned, the titles and date form the legend. 1689. Rud. xxxv. 15. Sn. xvii. 12. MB. 1690. MB. 1691. MB. On these two last the letters are smaller, and the legend is interrupted by the top of the heads. 1692. MB. 1693. MB. 1694. Upon these three the workmanship is very superior and the crown larger. Some of the latter, date 1694, are in the same inferior style as the early ones, but the letters smaller than on any of them; MB, they can scarcely have been executed by the Roettiers, who, probably engraved those of 1692, 3 and 4, as well as the larger denominations of this reign.

Three-Pences: Resemble the groats, except in the numeral which indicates the value. 1689. Rud. xxxv. 16. Sn. xvii. 9. MB. 1690. Smaller letters. MB. 1691. MB. 1692. MB. 1693. MB. 1694. MB. all four of the superior style of work. Some of the year 1691 are of the inferior kind of work.

Half-Groats: 1689. MB. like groat of same date. 1691. Like groat of that date. Rud. xxxv. 17. Sn. xvii. 6. MB. as are also 1692. MB. 1693. MB. 1694. Another of this date has smaller letters. MB.

Pence: 1689, 1690, 1691. Rud. xxxv. 18. Sn. xvii. 3. 1692, 1693, 1694. All in MB. all of the inferior style of work; the letters on 1694 smaller than the rest.
Cr. ½Cr. Shil. 6d. 4d. 3d. 2d. 1d.
1689, 1st sh. caul and int. frost+
1689, 1st sh. caul frosted+
1689, 1st sh. no frost+
1689, 2nd sh. caul frosted+
1689, 2nd sh. no frost+
1689, Large letters, coarse++++
1690, Secundo+
1690, Tertio+
1690, Small letters, coarse+++
1691, Arms crosswise++
1691, As 1690, coarse++++
1691, Fine work, crown large+
1692, QVARTO+++
1692, QVINTO++
1692, Fine work, crown large++
1692, Coarse++
1693, QVINTO+++
1693, Fine work++
1693, Coarse++
1694, Fine work++
1694, Coarse work++
1694, Coarse work, letters still smaller++

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