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17th century Irish Half Crown Gunmoney

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Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

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Basic Information

Accession Number:1932N285.412
Collection:Coins & Medals
Date:1690 - 1690


In 1688 James II was deposed and fled to France. In the following year he landed in Ireland in an attempt to recover his throne. Since he was short of money, he issued base metal coins to pay for the supplies he needed. These coins are known as 'gunmoney' because tradition maintains they were made from metal obtained by melting down old cannon. The coins are marked with the year and month they were issued. James promised that once he was back in power he would call in the coins, one month's worth at a time, and exchange them for proper silver coins. However he lost and the coins became worthless.

Presented by E Marston Rudland, 1932.

Further Information

Reign:King James II
Production Period:Stuart
Material(s):Copper alloy
Denomination:Half crown
Mint Mark:Mar - month of striking
Place of Origin:Ireland

Associated People

Associated Places


Diameter:32 mm