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Category Archives: Coins

2018 round-up coin and medal fairs plus congresses

New 2018 diary and lots of dates of fairs and study days for coin and medal collectors to enter.  The regulars are as ever the London Coin Fair (LCF), the Bloomsbury fair (also London) as well as York, Harrogate, Birmingham and Wakefield.  We don’t do all of them but we will be exhibiting at the […]

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MB80 medal auction round-up

Overall our medal auction on 29 March achieved solid prices for this specialist market.  There’s still lots of interest in the British Art Medal Society (BAMS) medals with the iconic Terror/Virtue and Diamond making strong prices according to an established market.  However, we’re beginning to notice that collections made by the original members of the […]

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Beer and tobacco, God and Mammon – MB81 token auction

Beer and tobacco used to go together as two of life’s pleasures – until the dangers to health were pointed out and legislation came in.  But as numismatic series to collect you can have fun seeking out tokens which feature both though perhaps not on the same item.  The current auction, MB81 closing on 4 […]

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Round-up MB79 auction and other news

Simmons Gallery has had a very successful year with our very specialised bid auctions for tokens, medals and weights.   Described not as small but as ’boutique’ (!) auctioneers by one collector, we held 5 auctions, 3 of them in the autumn and hope to do something similar in 2017 – consignments of collections, accumulations and […]

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Mint marks and symbols on Monnaie de Paris medals

I’m sometimes asked: how can you know a medal from the Monnaie de Paris is an original or a restrike? Some of the information below should help – I’ve kept it brief.   There is also the question of patination, which varies over the years going from the rather lovely olive brown of the early […]

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Minting tokens and trials

In our latest token auction catalogue there are over 50 trials, tokens and medals relating to minting practice.  Most are related to the Birmingham Mint but there are a few from the Royal Mint  and from machinery manufacturers such as Taylor and Challen and Cincinatti Milacron HME presses. James Sweeny in his 1981 Numismatic History […]

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Coin fairs, auctions and congresses – 2016 news round-up

After FIDEM in Gent and a stimulating visit to the Mauquoy mint and factory, we  returned to a very busy few weeks in the UK.  First there was our own medal auction, 20th century to the present day, which took place on 22 September.  We achieved a top price of £1700 for Lynn Chadwick’s medal […]

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Contemporary forgeries: out to deceive

As the previous blog post notes, there have always been coin forgeries.  When putting together the latest weights auction (MB77 24 August 2016) Howard came across some curious contemporary forgeries, i.e. those made at the same time as the circulating coinage they imitate (lots 334-338). Basically there are three sorts Plating of gold on base […]

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Beating the cheats old-style: coin weights

By Howard Simmons Throughout history people have cheated; to make dealings fair it is a fundamental requisite for anyone in a position of power to maintain a good system of weights and measures. The battle between the cheat and the authorities has been going on for thousands of years. Coins have been the target of […]

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Updating the coinage: New Zealand

Presents are always great so we were delighted to receive from the other side of the world examples of the current circulating money of New Zealand.  Lighter in weight than the previous cupro-nickel coinage, some of the coins are plated, but the two highest values (1 dollar, 2 dollars) are brass aluminium.  Our set has […]

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