1/2 Pice (2 Reas), Issued by Bombay Presidency, India, 1791
Minted by Soho Mint, Birmingham

Obverse Description

East India Company balemark; around below, 1791

Reverse Description

A pair of balanced scales; between the pan in Persian script, Adil (translation: Just)

Edge Description

milled ///


Production of these coins is often attributed to the mint of the East India Company in London. This may be based on Pridmore who, in discussing why the coins were struck in England says "Other reasons may have been connected with the establishment of the Company's mint at London at French Ordinary Court, equipped with modern machinery from Boulton's Soho foundry". Doty however places the work firmly at Soho itself. He follows the coinage from the initial contact between Robert Wissett of the EIC and Boulton on 11 December 1790 through difficulties in obtaining the copper from Thomas Williams and the production and shipment of the different denominations even noting that "simultaneous striking of the largest and smallest sizes continued until the first day of December". Doty goes on to support Boulton's pride "He had valid reason for pride. In nine months' time, he had struck over seventen million copper coins for Bombay. This would have represented a hefty output for any public mint of the day; but Boulton's privste one at Soho had achieved several other projects as well". Doty records the mintage figure for the 1/2 Pice denomination as 7,903,280.

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