||William & Mary copper Halfpenny 1694, S-3452, XF45 Brown NGC. Rich grayish brown surfaces, mostly free of abrasion, make this an appealing example of the halfpenny of this reign. The mint had great trouble at this time producing copper blanks of proper weight and of good quality, having first tried using tin with a diamond-shaped copper plug at center but the metal reacted poorly to humid weather and quickly corroded. The production of the first milled coppers, during the reign of Charles II, seemed to go well but the metal was abandoned in favor of tin early in the reign of James II. In fact, most of the copper issues of William III reigning alone and of George I were also wretched when made, and few have survived. Anne's reign, in between, saw the issue of no coppers during her lifetime, and it was not until George II's time that really fine copper flans were made in quantity. On early pieces such as the present lot, it is highly unusual to find copper of light color, thus the darker color seen here is typical. This appealing halfpenny was struck from normal dies that were aged. The portraits on this piece are exceptional.
Realized $282.00. Description courtesy of Heritage Auctions.