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Love Token - Plenty & Britannia, King George III, England, Great Britain, 1797 Numismatics Reg. No: NU 44698

Love token depicting a young woman (Plenty) with a bird on the obverse and the figure representing Britannia on the reverse. Made from a 1797 penny coin.

Love tokens were often commissioned by convicts before they were transported to Australia, as a memento for their loved ones. Itinerant engravers visited the prisons and hulks, finding a ready market for these tokens, which were made to order from smoothed-down coins.

Love tokens are evidence of the British Government's attitude to law and order and treatment of indentured labourers in a strict Government 'Assignment System' which provided cheap labour for the expanding British empire during the 1700s and 1800s.
Coin with original obverse of George III removed. Design shows a young woman holding scales and a possibly a wheel with a cornucopia under one arm, with a bird with outstretched wings. Decorative floral background. Reverse shows Britannia. The reverse is damaged in the centre.
Acquisition Information:
Transfer from National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), 1976
Discipline: Numismatics
Dimensions: 35 mm (Diameter)
Weight: 25.84 g (Weight)

More information

Tagged with: families, immigration, immigrant voyages, settlement, convicts, travel, love tokens
Themes this item is part of: Eugene von Guerard Collection, Eugene von Guerard, Artist (1811-1901), Numismatics & Philately Collection
On Display at: Melbourne Museum
Primary Classification: TOKENS
Secondary Classification: Great Britain - England
Tertiary Classification: love tokens
DateEra: 1797 AD
Obverse Description: Young woman (Plenty) holding scales and a wheel (?) with a cornucopia under one arm, with a bird with outstretched wings. Decorative floral background.
Reverse Description: Britannia seated left holding branch and trident, ship on horizon at left.
Text around rim 'BRITANNIA 1797', incuse on raised rim.
Shape: round
Material: Bronze
Issued By: King George III, England, Great Britain, 1797
Mint: Soho (Mint), Birmingham, England, Great Britain, 1797
Previous Collection: Eugene von Guerard, pre 1880
  1. [Catalogue] Pullin, Ruth. 2011. Nature Revealed: Eugene von Guerard.

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