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Australian Shillings

1916 Australian Silver Shilling

Sterling Silver

1916 was the first year that Australian coins were actually minted in Australia, Melbourne Mint used dies delivered from the Royal Mint to manufacture these coins which can be distinguished by the mintmark "M" at the base of the reverse. by 1919 all shillings were being made in Australia so there was no longer the need for the mint mark and thus was removed.
The 1916 and 1917 shillings are amongst the most common of the George V shillings and can often be found in high grade at relatively affordable prices.

Image Courtesy of Downies-Australian Coin Auctions

The highest point on the obverse is the crown band where the centre diamond, pearls and rubies can be found. Wear starts at the centre diamond and spreads out from here consuming the pearls and rubies. This is why coin dealers often use the term 8 pearls or a lesser number to describe the condition of the obverse of George V coins with a crowned effigy. The lower the condition of a coin, the less the number of visible pearls.
When looking at the obverse of these coins a collector should look at:
  • the centre diamond of the crown band;
  • the end of the moustache:
  • the top of the ear;
  • nicks and dents around the rim;
  • scratches or other defects on the surface;
  • a weak strike shows in the rim denticles and crown pattern and in the collar just under the chin, also the orb on the crown flattens out with die wear.


Composition: .925 silver
Silver Content: 0.1680 oz
Edge: Reeded
Weight: 5.65 grams
Size: 23.5 mm
Obverse: Sir E.B. Mackennal
Reverse: W.H.J. Blakemore