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Isle of Man Christmas Fifty Pence Coins with sequence C under the Prefix B

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BC Die Letters on Fifty Pence coins in the IOM Xmas Series, and AC & BC are correlated each other.

The BC die letters are very interesting to talk about. Before we go further, I would like to introduce the very first BC die letters on £1 pound coins in 1978. It is only the provenance of the BC letters.

1978 BC

IOM £1 round coin was issued in 1978, it was 5 years earlier than the Royal Mint the UK first £1 round coin in 1983. It is fascinating. The IOM £1 coin reverse design is three legs over the island and bears 2nd portrait of Queen Elizabeth II sculptured by A. Machin RA on its obverse. Meanwhile, 1978 it was the 25th Anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s accession to the throne of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth realms. Therefore, it is not hard to cipher the sequence C which is a way to represent Tynwald respect on this special occasion. Also, the Prefix B it means at least a prooflike finish and/or a collector’s coin.

1980 BC

1980 BC, the Mint claimed as a Diamond Finish in the KM# reference book. But it can be understood as grade, or as Before Christ. Remember the Xmas series is modern products in numismatic world related to the Holy Bible.

1981 BC

1981 the BC die letters are noted as well. It is more likely to celebrating the first £5 pound coins in 1981.

You have seen many BC die letters in 1978, 1980 and 1981.So how do you understand the BC die letters in general? Generally speaking, a sequence of C under the Prefix B is noted. A sequence could be up to F from A, and the Prefix B means a proof finish. Therefore, the BC die letters in 1978. The BC die letters can be found from a 1978 £1 pound coin. Also, a £1 proof coin is only found in proof sets. This comes down the sequence of C means commemorating the £1 coins from the perspective of the Mint and Tynwald. Remember £1 pound coins in 1978 were the first £1 coin in the world.

Moreover, a sequence of C under the Prefix B was noted in the Xmas series in 1980. Of course, it is a glory for the Mint whom invented the theme in the numismatic world. Also they need a permission from Tynwald, and actually Tynwald approved it. Because the Xmas Fifty pence coins can form a part of incomes for a such island revenue. The Mint claimed the BC die letters were a diamond finish. It is not hard to understand the term of diamond from the perspective of the Mint, the founder of the Mint has the background of jewellery like diamond cut. It means Before Christ also from the perspective of the Mint whilst the B & C on the Xmas series are shown together. Because the Xmas series is a product invented by the Mint, and they assigned a life inside the product. So it is amazing. The Mint mark in 2000 was PMM, and a M is equal to 1000 years. They know what they were doing in 1980. After 2004, they are just like a boat lost in the sea only powered by a wind.

Last, a sequence of C under the Prefix B was noted in the Xmas series in 1981 as well. But do you know that they issued £5 coin on behalf of the government of the Isle of Man this year. The £5 coins were the world first. It is a glory again. Also, in England, it was the year Royal Wedding happened, a knot tied up between Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer. Actually, it was caused by the BB die letters noted in 1980 as well, the sequence of C was meaningful internally and hard to find out under the Prefix A and B, and the BC die letters can not be disappeared suddenly. Because they claimed the BC die letters are as diamond finish coins. So then they used the BC die letters in 1981 again. However, the BC die letters have died eternally since then. During this period before 1991, the treasurer was William Dawson.

Therefore, it comes down to the meaning of die letters on 50p coins made in 1980s. The first letter (i.e., BC), B, refers a at least prooflike grade or beyond, and the second letter C of the BC, has a internal meaning to celebrate or commemorate a great event related to IOM. Extra info, DD die letters on 1980 Viking boat 50p coins. The single D letter is only used on silver coins with proof grade. So the DD means proof grade over proof grade (or double proof) on Cu-Ni coins. In other words, the Mint in 1980s had tried lots of ways to strike coins in order to present to collectors. At least, the first Mint Master shared this moment with collectors whom currently hold the DD die letter coins.

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Falkland Islands Christmas Penguins 50p Coins VS. Isle of Man Christmas Colour-printed 50p Coins

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Falkland Islands Xmas Penguins 50p coin & its colour-printed version.

This topic talks about the theme of Penguins struck on Fifty pence coin by the Pobjoy Mint in 2017. In the following parts, we will cover the first Penguin 50p coin and the first colour-printed its kind 50p coin. Then you will have your own picture on products made by the Mint.

So, let we have a look at the first Penguin first. The 50p coin was released in 1995 on behalf of government of Gibraltar (GIB). Extra info: the GIB government assigned the contracts to the Mint from 1988 to 2003.

  • 1995 GIB Xmas 50p standard finish coin

However, the story of Penguins is not over yet on the Falklands Islands (FLK) 50p coins. Soon later, the first Xmas Penguin 50p coin was released in Nov 2017. This time, the Mint only do carded version on Xmas Penguins and the entire coins were sold out within a day! But how many people realise what sort of coins they are buying?

  • 2017 FLK Xmas Penguins 50p colour-printed coin

If you take a closer look at the Xmas Penguins 50p coin, you will find quality of the Penguins are really low in comparison to 2003 IOM Xmas 50p coin Snowman and James.

  • Colour-printed Xmas 50p coins: Penguins (FLK) vs. Snowman and James (IOM)

You may think, yes, Penguins are characteristics of Falkland Islands, where is a place of British Overseas Territory (i.e., BOT). If you think harder and further, you will see that no any good products will be made and produced by the Mint, and only cash-up.

  • Penguins: 1995 GIB Xmas 50p coin vs. 2017 FLK Xmas Penguins 50p coin

Two things need to be addressed here. First, theme Penguins, has long been existed since 1995 so it is a old topic. Secondly, the quality of colour-printed coins is really too low if you look at the 2003 Snowman one.

On this day, 12/12/2017, I have to say that are you all really like Penguins related coins? Because, yesterday, 11/12/2017, the Pobjoy Mint just sold out 950 sets of circulated 50p coins at £50.00 (incl. VAT) each set. Wait, what! Another Penguins set? Yes. Is it different with others released earlier this year? No! So, let we count how many Penguins are already in the market–12 coins in 4 categories. Category 1: Error (x1), Category 2: Coloured (x4 regular version + x1 Xmas) and Category 3: Circulated (x4 regular version + x1 Xmas), Category 4: Piedfort Xmas (x1). 12 coins in number have been produced in 2017, a single year which after they divorced with the IOM. What does that 12 mean? It is very simple, CASH UP! Will the coins be worth more in the future? Probably no, it is only related to people who are really care about the mintage. That is it. A few years later, once you look back at these Penguins coins, what a big joke it was. But, on the contrary, the IOM Xmas series is going to shoot up in price somehow in the future.

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Isle of Man Year Mint Coin Collection Set From 1971 to 1975

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Isle of Man Year Coin Collection Sets from 1971 to 1975

It is very interesting to talk about this topic. Because the 1971 IOM coin collection sets were struck at the Royal Mint, and the 1972 to 1975 sets then were struck at the Pobjoy Mint. But, Tynwald, the IOM government entity, had to require its own consistency on IOM coinage at the beginning of decimal coinage system. Therefore, the 1972 to 1974 sets had to be struck in 1975. Remember that IOM Year coin collection set had the specimen finish (SF) set, Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) finish set and Proof (PF) finish set in 1971, what sets would possibly be in 1975. The answer is SF (or BU) sets only. In order to illustrate each set, 50p coin from each set are used to show the difference among them (see pictures below). With regard to 1971 coin sets, the SF set was presented in plastic holder and the PF set in a white square box both made by the Royal Mint. Interestingly, the BU sets was all stored in Perspex folder made by the Pobjoy Mint when I sourced them.

  • 1971 Viking 50p Specimen Finish (SF) coin from folder set
  • 1971 Viking 50p Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) from BU set
  • 1971 Viking 50p Proof (PF) coin from proof set
  • 1972 50p Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) coin from original set

  • 1973 50p Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) coin from original set

  • 1974 50p Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) coin from original set

  • 1975 Specimen Finish (SF) set

You have seen year coin collection sets above from 1971 to 1975. It is worth mentioning that the Pobjoy mint did really good a start for Tynwald especially over the period between the two mints in transit. They smoothly shifted the PF sets of 1971 to 1974 and the BU sets of 1972 to 1975. Probably, it is only just a sign for the number 4 related circle. The ball is in your hands what will you do?