Moneta Gallery Coin Museum



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Madras Presidency 1/48 Rupee - 1794
Madras Presidency 1/48 Rupee - 1794

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Moneta



Registered: August 2005
Location: Arizona USA
Posts: 1,928
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Matthew Boulton was contracted to strike these for the East India Company in July of 1794 at his fully steam driven mint in Soho. Boulton thought the ideal coin would have wide raised rims with incused lettering, devices, and a lettered edge. This would discourage counterfeiting and produce a coin with long lasting qualities. While he was experimenting with a gold coin (?) his first product with this concept was his English Trade (Conder) token for Daniel Eccleston (see link below). In this design, by engraver Noel-Alexandre Ponthon, he went a bit further and had the obverse legend partly incuse and partly in relief making for a unique and beautiful coin. This 'cartwheel' concept was later (1797) adopted for the famous and official British one & two pence of George III.
Boulton reserved most of the rest of 1794 to producing the 1/48 Rupee and the smaller 1/96 Rupee. These odd denominations were an attempt to make these coins fit into an assortment of local coinage mediums at that time. In all 4,616,129 of the larger denomination (34 to the pound) and 9,102,868 of the smaller (68 to the pound) were minted for 1794. Another, slightly larger, issue of this design was made for 1797.
Despite the mintage figures these coins are scarce in nice condition and very scarce in this NGC Proof 64 virtually blemish free encapsulation. I've used the Heritage photo because I will not be able to duplicate their results. Now that I have it in hand the coins appears bronzed with a darker tone with obvious proof surfaces, much better that the photo! Obverse incuse legend is "AUSPICIO REGIS ET SENATUS ANGLIAE" which translates from the Latin as "Under the Auspices of the King and Senate of England." The edge lettering (incuse) is "ENGLISH UNITED EAST INDIA COMPANY", with the 'EN' in English too weak to discern. This coin sold for a total of $934 at the Heritage Pre-Long Beach sale #3005 of 5/28/09, Lot#21396.


For the D. Eccleston piece see:
[ link ]


For examples of the British 'Cartwheel' pence:
[ link ]
· Date: June 8, 2009 · Views: 7,361 · Filesize: 33.5kb, 86.6kb · Dimensions: 850 x 419 ·
Keywords: Boulton Watt Birmingham Soho
Denomination: 1/48 Rupee
Reference #: KM 394
Date/Mintmark: 1794 (Soho, Birmingham)
Condition: NGC Proof 64 Brown
Metal: Copper

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IndiaCoochBehar.jpg
IndiaCopper.jpg
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Madras1794.jpg
Madras-20Cash08.jpg
IndiaRupee78.jpg
IndiaRupee45.jpg
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