Groat of Great Britain

20 Feb 2018  Tue

Groat was a long-defunct English silver coin worth four English pennies; its Scottish worth was four pence. This face value was first given to a thick and large silver coin that was in the general circulation in the Holy Roman Empire and other parts of Europe. The first English groat was minted under King Edward I.

The first English Groat’s weight was around 89 grains. Later on, the weight of this denomination decreased. During the regime of Edward III, the weight of Groat was reduced to 72 grains. During the reign of Henry IV and Edward IV, the weight was further reduced. The finesse of the metal seemly silver of this denomination was less than Sterling and after 1561, Groat was irregularly issued.

The Scots groat was issued during the reign of King David II and Irish groat was first minted around 1425 CE. The last groat of England was minted under the sovereign of Elizabeth I of England. Yet, three more issues of groats were minted under emergency coinage.

The above-shown groat was issued by Edward I around 1272 to 1307 CE. The obverse of this coin depicts the portrait of King Edward I within the arch-like design and a continuous legend around it reads ‘EDWARDUS DI GRA REX ANGL’ meaning ‘Edward by the Grace of God King of England’. The reverse of this coin depicts a long cross covering the entire flan. The legend inscribed within it reads ‘DNS HIBNE DUX AQUT (LONDONIA CIVI)’ meaning ‘Lord of Ireland, Duke of Aquitaine, City of London’ within the dotted lines.

This denomination ceased to exist in the United Kingdom around 1856 CE. Later on, in 1888 groat was issued for British Guiana and British West Indies. It remained in circulation till 1955 until these territories adopted the decimal system.

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