- "Brunei 1 cent coin" redirects here. For the Bruneian coin issued in 1887, see Brunei 1 cent coin (1887).
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The 1 sen coin (sometimes Anglicized as 1 cent) is a current circulation and occasional commemorative piece of Brunei. It has been issued in 11 types since 1967, one under Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien III (1914–1986; r. 1950–1967) and ten under Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah (1946–; r. 1967–). All of the coins have been struck at foreign mints and issued by the Brunei Currency Board and its successors, the Brunei Currency and Monetary Board and Monetary Authority of Brunei Darussalam.
The first coin of the denomination was introduced in 1967, during the last year of Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien III's reign. His abdication prompted the discontinuation of this piece, and it was replaced in 1968 by a new circulation type of his successor, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah. This newer coin remained in production until 1977, and was followed later the same year by a slightly redesigned piece. A final circulation variety using the same design was then released in 1986 and struck annually until 1993, along with a non-circulating silver piece minted from 1987 to 1993.
In 1992, a non-circulating commemorative coin was issued on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Brunei Currency Board. The following year, a redesigned circulation type was then introduced alongside a similar non-circulating silver coin. The silver piece was only minted into 1994, but the circulation type remained in production until 2006. Non-circulating base metal and silver coins commemorating the 10th anniversary of Brunei's independence were also released in 1994. The most recent 1 sen piece to be introduced was released in 2008 and was last minted in 2014. Its designs are identical to those of the circulation type first issued in 1992, but it is of a different composition.
All of the coins are currently legal tender in their country of origin, each carrying a face value of 0.01 Brunei dollar. With the exception of the silver and commemorative pieces, which are intended for collectors, the pieces currently circulate in Brunei, and can be used "for the payment of any amount not exceeding $2". Per the 1967 Currency Interchangeability Agreement, they are also used as "customary tender" in Singapore, circulating for a value of 0.01 Singaporean dollar.
Coin of Omar Ali Saifuddien III (1967)Edit
After the unexpected death of Sultan Ahmad Tajuddin (1913–1950; r. 1924–1950) in 1950, his younger brother succeeded him as sultan, adopting the royal name Omar Ali Saifuddien III. Under the new monarch, Brunei remained a protectorate of the United Kingdom, but gradually became more autonomous after the adoption of the 1959 constitution. Among his other accomplishments were his two National Development Plans, which were enacted in an attempt to modernize the agricultural practices, infrastructure, industry, education, and health and welfare in Brunei.
In 1967, the last year of Omar Ali Saifuddien's reign, the Brunei dollar was introduced, replacing the Malaya and British Borneo dollar at a rate of 1:1. Per the Interchangeability Agreement of 1967, this new currency was initially interchangeable at par to the Malaysian ringgit and Singaporean dollar. Brunei and Singapore continue to maintain the interchangeability of their respective currencies, but Malaysia, having withdrawn from the agreement in 1973, no longer maintains a peg between its currency and those of Brunei and Singapore.
The first series of coins of the Brunei dollar, consisting of denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, and 50 sen, was released in 1967 under Omar Ali Saifuddien III. Aside from the ½ and 1 pitis coins of Sultan Abdul Momin (before 1788–1885; r. 1852–1885) and the 1 cent piece of Hashim Jalilul Alam Aqamaddin (1825–1906; r. 1885–1906), these are the only modern Bruneian coins to not be issued during Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah's reign. All five were struck under commission at the Royal Mint of the United Kingdom.
The composition and measurements of the 1 sen piece are similar to those of the original Singaporean cent and Malaysian sen, as well as the last Malaya and British Borneo cent. The Bruneian coin is made of bronze and measures 1.94 grams in mass, 17.78 millimeters in diameter, and 1.1 millimeters in thickness. It has medallic alignment and a plain edge, and like most coins, is round in shape. Both of the piece's rims are raised and undecorated.
A left-facing illustration of Omar Ali Saifuddien III appears in the middle of the obverse. In this depiction, the sultan is shown sporting his signature mustache and wearing a military uniform and a songkok emblazoned with the emblem of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces. The caption "SULTAN OMAR ALI SAIFUDDIN III" encircles the illustration on the coin, extending clockwise from the coin's upper right to upper left rims. A small circular point at the top of the obverse separates the beginning of this text from the end.
The reverse, designed by British artist Christopher Ironside (1913–1992), features an ornate floral design in its center. Printed clockwise from the coin's lower left to upper right peripheries is the Malay inscription "KERAJAAN BRUNEI", which translates to English as "Government of Brunei". It is followed by the Gregorian date of minting, "1967", which is separated from the word "BRUNEI" by a small circular point. Inscribed counterclockwise at the bottom of the piece is the face value "1 SEN". It is separated from the word "KERAJAAN" and the date of minting by two small points, one at each side of the value.
Approximately 1,000,000 examples of the 1967 coin were produced. Only business strikes of this particular type are known to exist.
Coins of Hassanal Bolkiah (1968–present)Edit
After ruling nearly 17 years as sultan, on October 4, 1967, Omar Ali Saifuddien III willingly abdicated in favor of his eldest son, Crown Prince Hassanal Bolkiah. The young prince, only 21 years old at the time of his father's abdication, ascended the throne on October 4 and was officially coronated on August 1, 1968. During Hassanal Bolkiah's 52-year reign, a number of significant events have occurred, including Brunei's independence from the United Kingdom in 1984; continued developments in education, national security, and health and welfare; and Brunei's incorporation into the international community.
First portrait (1968–1993)Edit
The first series of coins of Hassanal Bolkiah, consisting of denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, and 50 sen, was introduced by the Brunei Currency Board in 1968. All five pieces were struck until 1973, when they were replaced by new types with slightly modified legends. With the exception of the 1 sen coin, which was struck with a new composition from 1986 to 1993, these new pieces were then manufactured until 1993. In addition, non-circulating silver pieces of the same design were minted for collectors from 1987 to 1993. The five coin denominations were struck at the Royal Mint until 1983, and at the Singapore Mint beginning in 1984.
One sen pieces manufactured from 1968 to 1986 are composed of bronze and measure 1.9 grams in mass, 17.78 millimeters in diameter, and 1.1 millimeters in thickness. Coins struck from 1986 to 1993 are instead made of copper-plated steel and weigh a lighter 1.74 grams, but have the same diameter and thickness as their earlier dated counterparts. The non-circulating silver coins are of sterling (.925) fineness and weigh 2.92 grams in mass. They measure the same diameter and thickness as the circulating pieces. Regardless of the year and composition, the first cents of Hassanal Bolkiah have medallic alignment and a plain edge, and are round in shape. The rims of both the obverse and reverse are raised and undecorated.
A right-facing portrait of a young, 21 or 22-year-old Hassanal Bolkiah wearing a military uniform and a songkok appears in the center of the obverse. Engraved clockwise from the coin's lower left to lower right peripheries is a caption identifying the figure illustrated on the coin. On pieces minted from 1968 to early 1977, this text reads "SULTAN HASSANAL BOLKIAH I". Later coins, however, omit the "I", as his regnal name officially excludes the numeral. Regardless of the legend used on the coin, the beginning and end are separated by a single diamond-shaped point at the bottom of the obverse.
Aside from the date of minting, the reverse is virtually identical to that of the 1967 cent of Omar Ali Saifuddien III. An ornate floral symbol appears in the center, with the legend "KERAJAAAN BRUNEI" inscribed clockwise from the lower left to upper right rims. The Gregorian date of minting is displayed in the same direction at the right side of the reverse, and is separated from the word "BRUNEI" by a small circular point. Engraved counterclockwise at the bottom of the coin is the face value "1 SEN", which is divided from the government title and date by two small points, one at each side of the value.
A total of 1,644,000 coins without the numeral "I" were manufactured from 1968 to 1977, including 1,640,000 pieces with a standard finish and 4,000 proofs. Of these, an unknown number of the proofs were distributed in official sets by the Brunei Currency Board.
Over 2,930,000 bronze coins without the numeral were struck from 1977 to 1986, including 2,870,000 business strikes, 30,000 specimen coins, and over 30,000 proofs. Of these, all of the specimens were sold in specimen sets and around 28,000 of the proofs were distributed in proof sets.
A total of 4,788,000 plated pieces were minted from 1986 to 1993, including 4,775,000 business strikes and 13,000 specimens sold in sets. Around 14,000 of the proof silver coins following the same design were also distributed in sets by the Brunei Currency Board from 1987 to 1993.
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Second portrait (1992–2014)Edit
By 1992, although Hassanal Bolkiah had aged over 20 years since the start of his reign, a younger portrait of the sultan continued to appear on Brunei's coins. As late as that date, an updated likeness of the sultan was created for use on Bruneian coinage, along with a new caption applying the "Haji" honorific to Hassanal Bolkiah's name. These changes were first applied to commemorative coins in 1992 and circulation pieces in 1993, and continue to be used to this day.
Brunei Currency Board coin (1992)Edit
Per the Currency Act of 1967 issued by Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien III, the Brunei Currency Board was officially established on June 12, 1967. From then, it functioned as the central bank of Brunei until the creation of the Brunei Currency and Monetary Board in 2004. In 1992, in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Brunei Currency Board, a series of commemorative 1, 5, 10, 20, and 50 sen and 1, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, and 250 dollar pieces was struck in precious metals and issued to collectors. These coins, in addition to non-circulating 25, 50, and 500 dollar pieces commemorating Hassanal Bolkiah's accession to the throne, were the first to incorporate the second portrait of the reigning sultan. They were struck under commission at the Singapore Mint.
The 1 sen piece of the series is composed of .925 fine silver and measures 3.1 grams in mass and 17.78 millimeters in diameter. It has medallic alignment and a plain edge. Both of the coin's rims are raised and undecorated.
A facing illustration of Hassanal Bolkiah appears in the middle of the obverse. In this depiction, the Bruneian monarch is shown sporting his signature mustache, a decorated military uniform, and a songkok emblazoned with the emblem of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces. Printed clockwise along the rim above is the caption "SULTAN HAJI HASSANAL BOLKIAH".
A depiction of the Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque in Bandar Seri Begawan is displayed in the center of the reverse, the face value "1 SEN" inscribed on a single horizontal line below. This building, a place of worship for Bruneian Muslims, is often considered one of the most beautiful mosques in the Asia-Pacific, and is one of Brunei's most popular tourist attractions. Printed clockwise along the periphery above is the Malay legend "KERAJAAN BRUNEI". Inscribed in the opposite direction from the upper left to upper right peripheries is the text "ULANGTAHUN KE-25 LEMBAGA MATAWANG 1992", Malay for "25th anniversary of the Currency Board, 1992". This legend is separated from the other by two small circular points, one at each side of the reverse.
Only 2,000 examples of the coin, all proofs, were manufactured during a single year of production. The piece was distributed exclusively in proof sets by the Brunei Currency Board.
Independence coin (1994)Edit
On January 1, 1984, the United Kingdom ended its protectorate over Brunei, thereby granting the small Bornean state its independence. In celebration of the 10th anniversary of this event, the Brunei Currency Board issued a series of commemorative 1, 5, 10, 20, and 50 sen and 1, 5, 10, 100, and 1,000 dollar coins in 1994. With the exception of the higher valued 100 and 1,000 dollar pieces, which were only struck in gold, each denomination was manufactured in base metal and silver. All of the coins were produced under commission at the Singapore Mint.
The base metal 1 sen piece is composed of copper-plated steel and measures 1.74 grams in mass, 17.78 millimeters in diameter, and 1.1 millimeters in thickness. The non-circulating silver coin is of sterling (.925) fineness and weighs 2.92 grams in mass, and has the same diameter and thickness as the base metal piece. Regardless of composition, the coin has medallic alignment and a plain edge, and is round in shape. Both of its rims are raised and undecorated.
A facing illustration of a mustached Hassanal Bolkiah wearing a military uniform and songkok appears in the center of the obverse. Printed clockwise along the rim above is the caption "SULTAN HAJI HASSANAL BOLKIAH".
A symbol representing the 10th anniversary of Brunei's independence is engraved in the middle of the reverse. This symbol contains the emblem of Brunei inside a circular boundary in the middle of a large centerpiece. Ornate floral patterns are engraved above and below the emblem, and the Crown of the Sultan of Brunei is additionally illustrated at the top of the centerpiece. A crossing firearm and sword superimpose the lower portion of the centerpiece, and an inverted crescent containing the Jawi inscription "اولڠ تاهون ك-10 كمردكأن" (Romanized: Ulang tahun ke-10 kemerdekaan), meaning "10th anniversary of independence", appears below. Printed horizontally below the symbol is the face value "1 SEN", and inscribed clockwise along the periphery above is the Malay legend "KERAJAAN BRUNEI". The Latin equivalent of the Jawi in the symbol, "ULANGTAHUN KE 10 KEMERDEKAAN", extends counterclockwise from the coin's upper left to lower right peripheries, a circular point at the beginning separating it from the other legend. This legend is followed by the dates "1984 - 1994", which are separated from the word "KEMERDEKAAN" by a tilde (⁓) and the word "BRUNEI" in "KERAJAAN BRUNEI" by a circular point.
Around 3,000 base metal and 1,980 silver examples of the coin were manufactured. Of these, an unknown number of the uncirculated base metal and all 1,980 of the proof silver pieces were distributed in official sets by the Brunei Currency Board.
Standard coins (1993–2014)Edit
In 1993, the Brunei Currency Board released a series of new 1, 5, 10, 20, and 50 sen coins into circulation. These were the first circulation pieces to utilize the updated portrait of Hassanal Bolkiah introduced around 1992. In addition, non-circulating silver versions of these coins were also minted for collectors from 1993 to 1994. With the exception of the 1 sen coin, which changed its composition in 2008, the pieces have remain unchanged since their initial release. Each of the coins was struck under commission at the Singapore Mint.
The 1 sen coin was struck in copper-plated steel from 1993 to 2006, and then in brass from 2008 to the present. Both pieces measure 17.78 millimeters in diameter and 1.1 millimeters in thickness, but the brass coin is slightly heavier, weighing 1.79 grams compared to the copper-plated piece's 1.74 grams. The .925 silver pieces are also the same size, but measure 2.92 grams in mass. Regardless of composition, the coin has medallic alignment and a plain edge, and is round in shape. The rims of both sides of the piece are raised and undecorated.
A facing illustration of a mustached Hassanal Bolkiah wearing a military uniform and songkok is engraved in the center of the obverse, the caption "SULTAN HAJI HASSANAL BOLKIAH" inscribed clockwise along the rim above.
An ornate floral symbol appears in the center, with the legend "KERAJAAAN BRUNEI" inscribed clockwise from the lower left to upper right rims. The Gregorian date of minting is displayed in the same direction at the right side of the reverse, and is separated from the word "BRUNEI" by a small circular point. Engraved counterclockwise at the bottom of the coin is the face value "1 SEN", which is divided from the government title and date by two small points, one at each side of the value.
Total mintages for the copper-plated and brass coins are currently unknown. Around 6,000 of the plated pieces were distributed in official specimen sets by the Brunei Currency Board; the remainder were released into circulation. Only business strikes of the brass type are currently known to exist.
All 4,000 of the silver proofs manufactured from 1993 to 1994 were sold in proof sets by the Brunei Currency Board.