Sigismund (Zygmunt) III, king of Poland between 1587 and 1632, must have really enjoyed seeing his name and face on coins. He minted tons of them, each with slightly different portraits and inscriptions, which makes identification tough. They are usually pretty well worn, so that doubles the difficulty when reading the already-difficult inscriptions. Then, just when you think you have faithfully ID'd your coin, the catalogs chime in with phrases like varieties exist.
Trinidad and Tobago, off the coast of Venezuela in South America, became independent in 1962 and started producing coinage in 1966. The large $10 dollar coins appeared in 1972 and continued until 1980.
COINS DATED 1972: produced in silver
COINS DATED AFTER 1972: produced in both silver and copper-nickel
The first step in evaluating these coins is to determine the metallic composition. If you have been collecting for a while, you instinctively know the difference between silver and copper-nickel. If you are new, take your coin to a jeweler to be sure.
This page shows two of the most common fake California Gold pieces, dated 1852 and 1857, but there are oodles more fakes.
The numismatic (coin collecting) specialty area known as US California Fractional Gold is highly sophisticated and very complex. Genuine pieces are tiny and valuable, and they may appear crude and poorly made. It is not surprising, then, that crooks and shysters choose this area as fertile ground for ripping off collecting novices. Don't be a victim.
Bahrain, as small island nation in the Persian Gulf, became independent in 1971 but had been minting coins a few years prior to that, since 1965. The Sheikh on the front of this coin is Isa Bin Salman, ruler of Bahrain between 1961 and 1999.
By 1968 most countries in the world had stopped minting coins in silver, replacing them with copper-nickel look-alikes. But this 500 fils is different. It contains 0.4707 troy ounces of silver. The same pattern was used again in 1983, but with more silver: 0.537 troy ounces. Sometimes people gold-plate silver coins, which makes them look spiffy but adds no value. In fact, gold plating a fully uncirculated silver coin subtracts value.
Alfred the Great ruled the Kingdom of Wessex for almost two decades towards the end of the 9th century. He defended his realm against Viking raids, and initiated vast reforms of his kingdom's military and economy.
Trever Ashmore has produced fake coins for over four decades and is still going. He is known for his counterfeits of medieval English coins.
Even for Alfred the Great, there seems to be at least 10 different types fakes by Ashmore, including the types with a bust, a monogram, or 'EXA' with dots on the sides. One of the types are shown here. They all have roughly the same look, though it can take a while to learn to spot them. Genuine coins from the 9th century, not surprising, are very valuable. Numismatic (coin collecting) research, experience, and 'trained eyeballs' are necessary to sort the counterfeits from the genuine.
In 1927, the German Reich issued these beautiful commemorative coins for the 1000th Anniversary - Founding of the city of Nordhausen.
These coins were struck at the Berlin mint, as denoted by the 'A' found under the '3'. Genuine coins weigh exactly 15.0 grams. Jewelers usually have scales that measure to a fraction of a gram, so visit a jeweler if you suspect your coin might be counterfeit. We do not know of any counterfeits of this coin.
Minted in 50% pure silver and with a hefty weight, these coins each contain 0.241 troy ounces of silver.
Well, Kenny, we have three active numismatists at CoinQuest and you have stumped all of us. Congratulations!
With no inscriptions whatever, your item is not likely legal tender currency from any country (for a counter-example, see this Austrian heller [Press Here]), but the German imperial eagle and 1917 date focuses origins to the late German Empire.
There are two possibilities:
Wow. What a neat coin. It comes from old German West Africa, called Tanganyika today. Germany acquired control of the area by treaties with coastal chiefs in 1884. After World War I, Tanganyika was entrusted to Great Britain and became an independent country in the British Commonwealth in 1961.
The gold 15 rupien coins are very popular with collectors. They contain 0.173 troy ounces of gold, but collector demand drives prices much higher than gold value.