Manders and Twible counterfeit florins
In the late 1920s and early 1930s there were multiple attempts at counterfeiting Australian silver coins - among those attempts were high-quality die-struck 1926, 1927, 1928 and 1931 florins. While it is unclear who struck the fake florins and where they were struck, they have become known as Manders and Twible florins: Ray Manders and Arthur Twible were counterfeiters whose story is well known thanks to Vince Kelly's book The Shadow. Research suggests that Arthur Twible produced cast coins, not die-struck coins (p176, Briggs, Australian Florins 1909 - 1963 Advanced Level, 2019). Louis Somme and Harold Williams were caught with florin dies in 1932 and had reportedly struck more than 47,000 florins (p181, Briggs, Australian Florins 1909 - 1963 Advanced Level, 2019) and were the likely source of the so-called Manders and Twible florins.
While the fake 1926, 1927, 1928 and 1931 florins are very good, they differ slightly from genuine coins. There are many small differences but the more obvious ones are documented here.
|P and : of IMP: point between rim denticles||P and : of IMP: point at rim denticles|
|second stroke of H and I of SHILLINGS point between rim denticles||second stroke of H and I of SHILLINGS point at rim denticles|
|shield is far from ribbon below||shield is close to ribbon below|
|thin, tapering emu leg holding shield||thick emu leg holding shield|
|9 of date tilted back||9 of date upright|
The dates on all coins differ from the genuine coins in the first two digits, and the last digit or two digits differ on all except the 1927 florin.
The mintages are unknown: no doubt a large number were produced in order to be profitable, and clearly a number of examples have survived to today, but the Manders and Twible counterfeit florins are still very scarce.