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Apr 19 2018 20:59 EST

BRITISH INDIA - 1897 - ONE QUARTER ANNA - VICTORIA EMPRESS - RARE COIN#X-22

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At his death, William IV had no surviving legitimate children, though he was survived by eight of the ten illegitimate children he had by the actress Dorothea Jordan, with whom he cohabited for 20 years. William was succeeded in the United Kingdom by his niece, Victoria. Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was born at Kensington palace in London on 24 May 1819. She started the monarch of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. From 01 May 1876, she used the additional title of Empress of India. Victoria was the only child of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III and Victoria Maria Louisa of Saxe-Coburg. Both the Duke of Kent and the King George III died in 1820, and Victoria was raised under close supervision by her German-born mother Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld. She inherited the throne at the age of 18 after her father’s three elder brothers died without surviving legitimate issue. The United Kingdom was already an established constitutional monarchy, in which the Sovereign held relatively few direct political powers. Privately, she attempted to influence government policy and ministerial appointments. Publicly, she became a national icon, and was identified with strict standards of personal morality. She married her first cousin, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, in 1840. Their 9 children and 26 of their 34 grandchildren who survived childhood married into royal and noble families across the European monarchy continent, tying them together and earning her the nickname “the grandmother of Europe”. After Albert’s death in 1861, Victoria plunged into deep mourning and avoided public appearances. As a result of her seclusion, republicanism temporarily gained strength, but in the latter half of her reign, her popularity recovered. Her Golden and Diamond Jubilees were times of public celebration. Her reign of 63 years and 7 months, which is longer than that of any other British monarch and the longest of any female monarch in history, is known as the Victorian era. It was a period of industrial, cultural, political, scientific, and military change within the United Kingdom, and was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire. She was the last British monarch of the House of Hanover; her son and successor King Edward VII belonged to the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

After the Indian Mutiny in 1857, the government of India was transferred from the East India Company to the Crown and in 1877, Victoria became Empress of India. Her empire also included Canada, Australia, India, New Zealand, and large parts of Africa. The coins issued after 1840 bore the portrait of Queen Victoria. The first coinage under the crown was issued in 1862 and in 1877 Queen Victoria assumed the title the Empress of India.

Quarter Anna (One Pice)
KM#467 Quarter Anna. Weight: 6.38g [6.40-6.57g]. Metal: Copper. Diameter: 25.20 mm – 26.30 mm. Edge:Plain. Alignment: Medal. Mint: Mumbai (Bombay), Kolkata (Calcutta) and Chennai (Madras). Obverse: Date and denomination “ONE QUARTER ANNA INDIA” with date below, all within a dotted circle. Wreath surrounds. Reverse: Crowned bust facing left with legends “QUEEN VICTORIA”. Mintage Years: Mumbai (Bombay): 1862 and 1875-1876 + Kolkata (Calcutta): 1862 and 1874-1876 + Chennai (Madras): 1862.
Distinguishing features of mints:

  • BUST
    • Bust A – Front of the dress has 4 panels with a single flower at right on bottom panel.
    • Bust B – Front of the dress has 4 panels with a flower at left and right on bottom panel. Tiny raised v on bottom center of bust. Floral design of dress differs.
  • DESIGN OF DATE SIDE
    • REVERSE I – Leaf below the first and last digit of date.
    • REVERSE II – Leaf below center of date.
  • MINT
    • Kolkata (Calcutta) Mint
      • Issues of 1862 have A/I with diameter 26.2-26.3 mm, A/I with V raised on bottom center of the bust and B/II with diameter 25.3-25.4 mm.
      • Issues from 1874 onwards are Type B/II.
      • Most 1879-1887 issues have a tiny incuse “C” on a bead of the inner circle below the center of the date.
    • Mumbai (Bombay) Mint
      • Issues of 1862 have A/I, V incuse on point of shoulder 25.5mm and another type with A/I dot below date 25.5mm.
      • Issues of 1875-76 have bust A and Reverse I (A/I).
      • From 1877 onwards are type B/I.
    • Madras (Chennai) Mint – 1862 type A/I with diameter 25.5 mm.

Note: The initial 1862 dated Calcutta 1/4 Annas were struck with a diameter of 26.2 – 26.3 mm (Type A/I). With the opening of the new Calcutta copper mint in 1865 the 1/4 Annas were struck with a diameter of 25.3 – 25.4 mm and a tiny raised v on the bottom center of the bust. Probably only a month or so later Calcutta began to strike coins with a new obverse and reverse (Type B/II). This type was used by Calcutta for the remaining Victorian period. Proofs and restrikes dated 1862 occur from pattern dies with 4-3/4 panels with a different floral design dress.

Key date coin: KM#467 (1862-1876) is 1862(b) A/I dot below date 25.5 mm with mintage 2,366,000.


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