Coin Curiosity

Researching the history coins of the British Commonwealth


Australian Next Generation $5 note

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Following on from the New Note Series $5 note that was released in 1992, the Reserve Bank of Australia released the Next Generation $5 note on September 1st, 2016 (Reserve Bank of Australia, and new notes were available from commercial banks on the day of launch. The project had first been announced in 2014 and the $5 was the first note to be updated (Reserve Bank of Australia,

As with the previous New Note Series $5 notes, the Next Generation $5 notes depict Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse and Parliament House, Canberra on the reverse. The serial number prefixes were changed to match all other polymer banknotes, with the first prefix letter starting from A, the second prefix letter running from A to M and the digits being the last two digits of the year the note was printed. Sheets run from AA to EJ. The signatures are of the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia and the Secretary to the Treasury.

Next Generation $50 prefixes and serial numbers
First and Last PrefixesSerial numbersNumber printedSignatories
AA 16 - EJ 160000001 - 4063626251,944,750Stephens/Fraser
AA 18 - EJ 180000001 - 062240438,588,986Lowe/Fraser
AA 19 - EJ 190000001 - 021816313,526,106Lowe/Kennedy
AA 20 - EJ 200000001 - 024206217,07,782Lowe/Kennedy
AA 21 - EJ 210000001 - 078685548,784,948Lowe/Kennedy

The Next Generation $5 note ably demonstrates that notes are not released in the order in which they are printed, with the 2019-dated notes being available long before the 2018-dated notes.

Prefixes and serial numbers are provided by the Reserve Bank of Australia.

2023 Maundy Money Set

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On 6rh April, 2023 the Royal Maundy church service took place at York Minster. It was King Charles III's first Royal Maundy service, and also the first with the Maundy money featuring his portrait.

74 men and 74 women each received 74 pence of Maundy money - 74 being the King's age. Within the white pouches given to each recipient were seven full sets of 2023 Maundy money and an extra Maundy fourpence to bring the total to 74 pence ( 1,036 Maundy pennies, 1,036 Maundy twopences, 1,036 Maundy threepences and 1,184 Maundy fourpences were struck.

1955 Rhodesia and Nyasaland Proof Set

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Proof sets of the first issue of Rhodesia and Nyasaland coins were issued in 1956 - the Central African Currency Board had asked in 1955 if the coins could be struck in silver rather than curponickel as the circulating coins were cupronickel, and the Royal Mint was able to oblige and strike the proof sets in .500 silver (p57, Hodgson, The Rhodesia and Nyasaland proof set of 1955 in Coin News, March 2023).

Although all 2,000 sets were struck in .500 silver, a number of catalogues list 1955 cupronickel proof sets as having been struck as well, though this is not the case. The origin of this error is unknown, but individual cupronickel proofs were struck for institutional collections (p58, Hodgson, The Rhodesia and Nyasaland proof set of 1955 in Coin News, March 2023)

2005 Missing Counterstamp Gallipoli Lest We Forget Dollar

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As with many previous years, in 2005 the Royal Australian Mint struck a non-circulating one dollar coin that was available to counterstamp and purchase at locations throughout Australia. In 2005 the one dollar coin was commemorating 90 years since the beginning of the Gallipoli campaign in 1915, and besides being available to counterstamp in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne (with B, S and M counterstamps respectively), it was also available for counterstamping at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra with a G counterstamp.

Around 40,000 coins were counterstamped at each location, however a small number escaped with no counterstamp. McDonald said 2 examples were known in 2013 and that one appeared to have been released at the Australian War Memorial (p160, McDonald, 2014 Pocket Guide to Australian Coins and Banknotes, 2013). In March 2023 Drake Sterling offered an example for sale with the note that fewer than 10 were known, though it did not state at which location the example was released (Eigner,

1887 Gothic Florin Varieties

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Davies reports two varieties of the 1887 Gothic florin - one with 33 trefoils/arcs in the obverse rim (Davies 779) and one with 46 trefoils/arcs in the obverse rim (Davies 780), though Davies 779 is listed as unconfirmed.

While its existence is unlikely given that the date is on the obverse, it is not impossible for Davies 779 to exist. Dickinson however never saw an example (p146, Dickinson, Victoria "Godless" and "Gothic" florins - A further report in Seaby's Coin and Medal Bulletin, May 1980), and while not outright dismissive of its existence, was certainly doubtful. Since then no example has been publicised so it is probably correct to assume that Davies 779 does not exist.

Why the coin was originally thought to exist is probably lost to time, but a worn example being misattributed seems unlikely, as 33 is quite different to 46, even on a small coin.