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12 pence
Sommer Islands 12 pence
General information

Sommer Islands


120 pound[1]


c. 1616[2][3]

Measurements and composition

5.86 g[2][3]


silver plated brass[2][3][4][5]




Hog, "SOMMER ISLANDS", value[2][4]



v · d · e

The 12 pence (or 1 shilling)[1] coin was a British colonial coin minted for use on the Sommer Islands (now Bermuda). It was authorized to be minted in 1616 by Governor Dan Tucker.[4] The coin had a value equal to 120 of a pound.[1]


The coin was composed of brass and bore a thin silver coating[2][3][4][5], which is not typically found on the coins nowadays, as the salty environment of Bermuda caused the silver to wash off, in turn causing the brass underneath to corrode.[4] It weighed 5.86 grams[2][3], and most of the coins were struck on thin, seldom-round planchets.[4] Depicted on the obverse was a boar underneath the Roman numerals "XII" (12), which signified the coin's value. Encircling the boar and value was a legend reading "SOMMER ISLANDS". A ship flying the Flag of St. George, possibly the Sea Venture, was displayed on the reverse.[2][4] Two variations of the reverse exist. One bearing small sails, and the other having larger sails.[2][3]


The coins were authorized to be minted by Governor Dan Tucker. They were intentionally made in a crude fashion to prevent them from being exported, but were coated with silver to appear more valuable to the local people who used the coins as currency.[4][6] The total mintage of the 12 pence coin is unknown, but 18 "small sail" and 6 "large sail" coins have been discovered. Due to their rarity, these coins are very valuable and many have been sold to collectors for large sums of money, especially the rarer "large sail" coins.[2][3] Years after the production of the original coins, a number of copy coins were minted by Montroville Wilson Dickeson in brass, copper, nickel, and white metal.[5]

Depictions on later currency[]

Main article: Sommer Islands pound#Depictions on later currency

A hog similar to the one depicted on all Sommer Islands coinage is inscribed on the current Bermudian 1 cent coin, which was first issued in 1970, and has been produced annually since.[7] In 1990, Bermuda issued a medallic 12 pence/daalder coin, which replicated the obverse of the 12 pence coin on its own obverse, and displayed the design of a "New Amsterdam" coin on its reverse.[8]