Well that's cool, Kim. You have a nice old farthing from Great Britain. The value is strongly dependent on the amount of wear. You say your coin is in average circulated condition, like the one in the picture. But your 'nicks or gouges' description is troubling. That kind of damage always lowers value.
It turns out that half pennie, and pennies from this time period look the same as farthings, only different sizes. We address all three coins on this page. Just to keep things interesting, there are other copper coins with Queen Victoria on the front but with different inscriptions on the back. This page only applies to coins with the BRITANNIAR inscription on the back, along with the seated figure Britannia.
FARTHING: 22 mm diameter
1/2 PENNY: 28 mm diamter
PENNY: 34 mm diameter
Most of these coins carry common dates. There are a few exceptions, which we call *better date* coins.
COMMON DATE FARTHINGS:
worn: $5 US dollars approximate catalog value
average circulated: $12
well preserved: $100
fully uncirculated: $200
BETTER DATE FARTHINGS:
1842: $100 in average circulated condition
1860: $2500 or more
These are catalog values. Please refer to our Important Terminology link for details about how to interpret them.
COMMON DATE HALF PENNIES:
worn: $7 US dollars approximate catalog value
average circulated: $15
well preserved: $100
fully uncirculated: $250
BETTER DATE HALF PENNIES:
1843: $80 in average circulated condition
COMMON DATE PENNIES:
worn: $10 US dollars approximate catalog value
average circulated: $35
well preserved: $150
fully uncirculated: $450
BETTER DATE PENNIES:
1843: $350 in average circulated condition
If you want to know more about farthings and related coins, go to AboutFarthings.com. It is a great site, sure to get collecting juices flowing in any seasoned or new collector. In fact, we received this note from Colin, proprietor of AboutFarthings:
It may be of interest to the person requesting the information, that an 1838 farthing with a full colon after DEF is a scarcer variety, and is probably worth about 1.5 times the usual price if you can find a variety collector. It is also worth noting that some 1858 farthings have the vertical bar missing in the 5 and are very often mistaken for 1838 farthings.
For serious collectors there are all sorts of varieties and variations of these old coins, some of them worth substantially more than the values we have quoted above. If you are interested, delve into the subject and you may be rewarded handsomely!
CoinQuest thanks AboutFarthings for use of their coin image.