The silver florin was worth two shillings in pre-decimal coinage, or one tenth of a pound (20 shillings). The coin made clear its value with the inscription ‘ONE FLORIN ONE TENTH OF A POUND’ on the reverse.

The British florin, or two-shilling coin, was issued from 1849 until 1967, with a final issue for coin collectors dated 1970.

In 1966, a decision was made in Great Britain to adopt a decimal system of money and this system went into effect on 15 February 1971.The florin was replaced in 1968 by the ten pence decimal coin.

There was, however, an earlier attempt at going to a decimal system back in 1849 during the reign of Victoria with the introduction of a coin bearing the name florin. The florin of 1849 was also worth two shillings or one-tenth of a pound. Victoria’s coin was not the first to bear this name, however. The first florin was the Italian one struck in gold in 1253 in Florence from which the name is derived.

Key theme(s):


More information:

Date 1900s, 1910s, 1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s
Material(s) Silver
Item number MBPO018

Questions to help you remember using this item

  • What other imperial currency coins can you remember from before decimalisation?
  • What was the smallest coin in pre-decimal currency?
  • What image did it have on it?

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