- Not to be confused with the Bermudian 1 penny coin.
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Elizabeth II, monarch title, state title
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The 1 cent coin is a current circulation piece of the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda. It has been issued in three major designs and eight types from 1970 to 2009, all during the reign of Queen Elizabeth II (1926–; r. 1952–). Each of the pieces was distributed by the Bermuda Monetary Authority and struck under commission at the Royal Mint of the United Kingdom.
The first type was introduced in 1970 as part of Bermuda's first series of decimal coins, and was produced almost annually until 1985. It was then replaced in 1986 by a new circulation piece, which was struck until a new type was introduced in 1988. The 1986 type was then produced again in 1990, and was followed in 1991 by a similar coin minted until 1998. Versions of the same design were also struck in precious metals for collectors in 1995. A new type was then manufactured from 1998 to 2006, followed by the most recent 1 cent piece from 2007 to 2009.
All eight of the coins currently hold legal tender status in Bermuda, each carrying a face value of 0.01 Bermudian dollar, the equivalent to 0.01 United States dollar. Because of the Bermudian cent's low purchasing power, its use in circulation has started to decline in recent years.
Machin portrait (1970–1985)
Until 1970, the pound sterling (along with local pound notes) remained the official currency of Bermuda. Coins and banknotes of the Canadian and United States dollars also circulated in the British Overseas Territory, but only in unofficial capacities. In following the international trend toward decimalization, Bermuda became one of the first British territories to adopt its own decimal currency, a dollar-based system inspired by the currencies of Canada and the United States, on February 6, 1970. Beginning on this date, the newly established Bermudian dollar replaced the pound sterling at an official rate of 1 dollar to 8 shillings and 4 pence (or 100 pence).
The first circulation coins of the Bermudian dollar were introduced in 1970 in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25, and 50 cents. They were later followed in 1983 by short-lived 1 and 5 dollar pieces. With the exception of the two higher-valued coins, which were only produced during a single year, each of the pieces of the first series was minted until 1985.
The 1 cent piece of the series is composed of a bronze alloy and measures 3.11 grams in mass, 19.05 millimeters in diameter, and 1.52 millimeters in thickness. These specifications are intentionally identical to those of the contemporary United States penny, a coin of equivalent value in Bermuda. The Bermudian piece has medallic alignment and a plain edge, and like most coins, is round in shape. Both of its rims are raised and undecorated.
The obverse, designed by British sculptor Arnold Machin (1911–1999), features an illustration of Elizabeth II, the current Queen of the United Kingdom, in its center. In this depiction, which first appeared in 1965 on coins of Canada, the young monarch is shown facing right and wearing the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara on her head. Printed clockwise along the periphery to the left of the image is the state title "BERMUDA", and written in the same direction at the rim to the right is the caption "ELIZABETH II".
The reverse, designed by British Italian sculptor Michael Rizzello (1926–2004), contains an illustration of a feral pig (Sus scrofa) facing left in its center. A similar depiction of a hog also appears on the first pre-decimal coins of Bermuda (then the Somers Islands) minted in the early 17th century. Printed clockwise along the rim above is the face value "ONE CENT", and inscribed in the opposite direction at the periphery below is the Gregorian date of minting.
A total of 29,373,474 examples of the coin were manufactured over 14 years of production. Of these, 29,356,000 were struck with a standard finish and 17,474 were minted as proofs. All of the proofs were distributed in proof sets and a small number of uncirculated pieces were sold in mint sets by the Bermuda Monetary Authority.
Maklouf portrait (1986–1998)
Circulation coins (1986–1998)
On August 8, 1984, the Royal Mint Advisory Committee selected a new portrait of Elizabeth II to be used on British coins. Designed by British Israeli artist Raphael David Maklouf (1937–), the new likeness of the queen started appearing on currency of the United Kingdom and various British Overseas Territories and Commonwealth realms as early as 1985. Bermuda adopted the portrait in 1986, applying it to a new series of circulating 1, 5, 10, 25, and 50 cent pieces. It was also incorporated onto a new 1 dollar piece in 1988. The 1 cent piece of this new design was struck in bronze from 1986 to 1990, copper-plated steel during part of 1988, and copper-plated zinc from 1991 to 1998.
The bronze piece, like the original Bermudian cent, measures 3.11 grams in mass, 19.05 millimeters in diameter, and 1.52 millimeters in thickness. The copper-plated steel and copper-plated zinc coins are lighter, respectively weighing 2.8 and 2.5 grams, but have the same diameter and thickness as their bronze counterpart. Each coin, regardless of composition, has medallic alignment and a plain edge, and is round in shape. Both rims of each piece are raised and undecorated.
A right-facing bust of Queen Elizabeth II appears in the middle of the reverse. In the depiction, the British monarch is illustrated with a youthful appearance, wearing the George IV State Diadem on her head, an earring in her left ear, and a necklace on her neck. Engraved in the likeness near the bust truncation are the "RDM" initials of the designer. The state title "BERMUDA" is inscribed clockwise along the rim to the left of the portrait, while the caption "ELIZABETH II" appears in the same direction at the periphery to the right.
Aside from the dates, the coin's reverse is identical to that of the original Bermudian cent. An illustration of a feral pig facing left is displayed in the center. Printed clockwise along the periphery above is the face value "ONE CENT", and inscribed counterclockwise at the rim below is the Gregorian date of minting.
A total of over 4,910,500 bronze coins were manufactured from 1986 to 1990, including 4,908,000 business strikes and 2,500 proofs. Of these, approximately 1,750 of the proofs were distributed in sets by the Bermuda Monetary Authority.
Around 2,500,000 copper-plated steel pieces were minted in 1988. Only business strikes of this particular type are known to exist.
About 17,360,000 copper-plated zinc coins were struck from 1991 to 1998, each with a standard finish. Of these, around 15,000 uncirculated examples from 1993 were sold in sets by the Bermuda Monetary Authority.
Gold and silver proof coins (1995)
In marking the 25th anniversary of Bermuda's first decimal coins, the Bermuda Monetary Authority issued a series of gold and silver 1, 5, 10, and 25 cent and 1 dollar coins in 1995. Each of the pieces utilized the same designs as the corresponding coins in circulation at the time. Minted solely in 1995, the coins were marketed exclusively toward collectors and never entered circulation.
The .917 gold and .925 silver 1 cent pieces have the same diameter and thickness as their circulating counterparts, but respectively weigh 6.2 and 3.7 grams. They have medallic alignment and a plain edge, and are round in shape. Both rims of each piece are raised and undecorated.
As many as 2,000 silver and 500 gold cents were minted, each with a proof finish. They were sold exclusively in proof sets by the Bermuda Monetary Authority.
Rank-Broadley portrait (1999–2009)
In 1997, the Royal Mint Advisory Committee selected another new portrait of Elizabeth II to appear on British coins. The new likeness, designed by British sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley (1952–), first appeared on currency of the United Kingdom and various British Overseas Territories and Commonwealth realms in 1998. It was used for the first time on Bermudian coins in 1999, appearing on a new series of 1, 5, 10, and 25 cent and 1 dollar coins. Due to its unpopularity, the 50 cent piece was not continued into the new series. The 1 cent piece of this new design was struck in copper-plated zinc from 1999 to 2006 and copper-plated steel from 2007 to 2009.
Both the copper-plated zinc and copper-plated steel pieces measure 2.5 grams in mass, 19.05 millimeters in diameter, and 1.52 millimeters in thickness. They have medallic alignment and a plain edge, and are round in shape. The rims of both sides of each piece are raised and undecorated.
A right-facing illustration of a 70-year-old Elizabeth II wearing the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara appears in the center of the obverse. Engraved below the likeness near the bust truncation are the "IRB" initials of the designer. The caption "ELIZABETH II" is inscribed clockwise along the rim to the left and the state title "BERMUDA" is displayed in the same direction at the periphery to the right.
An illustration of a feral pig facing right is displayed in the middle of the reverse, the value "ONE CENT" engraved clockwise along the rim above and the Gregorian date of minting printed in the opposite direction below.
Over 11,522,500 copper-plated zinc coins were manufactured from 1999 to 2006, including 11,510,000 business strikes; 10,000 Brilliant Uncirculated pieces (5,000 from 1999 and 2004); and 2,500 proofs. All of the Brilliant Uncirculated and proof coins were distributed in sets by the Bermuda Monetary Authority.
More than 6,400,000 copper-plated steel pieces were minted from 2007 to 2009. Only business strikes of this particular type are known to exist.