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Australian Shillings

1953 Australian Silver Shilling

.500 Silver

The 1953 shilling is the first to carry the new effigy of Queen Elizabeth II designed by the elderly Mrs Mary Gillick.
There was two changes to the legend, the first being the omission of the title F:D:, Fidei Defensor, the Latin title granted to Henry VIII by Pope Leo X in 1521. This caused a great deal of controversy amongst the religious leaders and the Labour opposition of the time.
The second change was the disappearance of BR: OMN, Britanniarum Omnium, All of the Britons, introduced in 1902 to include all of the British Empire. The official decision to drop this title came in 1954, in order to be in keeping with the status of the Commonwealth but in Australia it had not appeared on any of Elizabeth's coinage.


Collectors should consider acquiring most of the Queen Elizabeth II series in Gem coins, these are still affordable with the greatest possible upside. Coins Extra Fine and below are considered little more than bullion coins.
When looking at the Ram's head reverse the points to look at are:
  • The ram's forehead,
  • The nose,
  • The tip of the right horn,
  • The whole coin should be considered when grading including lustre, the fields, denticles and rim condition.
  • A weak strike shows in the lack of definition in the wool on the forehead and the first bulge under the chin, the forehead can even appear to be flat, there may also be a lack of definition in the horns.


Composition: .500 silver
.400 copper
.050 zinc
.050 nickel
Silver Content: 0.0908 oz
Edge: Reeded
Weight: 5.65 grams
Size: 23.5 mm
Obverse: Mary Gillick
Reverse: George Kruger Gray