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British coin Two Pence

This article discusses the British decimal two pence coin, issued from 1971, only. For the pre-decimal twopence, issued between 1660 and 1798, please see here[?], or the article on Maundy money.

The British decimal Two Pence (2p) coin was issued on 15 February 1971, the day the British currency was decimalised. In practice it had been available from banks in bags of 1 for some weeks previously.

The coin was initially minted from bronze, but since 1992 it has been minted in copper-plated steel except for a few months in 1998 when bronze was used again. As this is less dense than bronze, post-1992 coins have been slightly thicker. The coin weighs 7.13 grams and has a diameter of 25.91 millimetres.

The reverse of the coin is a plume of feathers within a coronet, formally The Badge of the Prince of Wales, with its motto ICH DIEN (I serve), with the numeral "2" below the feathers, and either NEW PENCE (1971-1981) or TWO PENCE (1982-date) above the feathers.

During the history of the coin, three different obverses have been used so far - between 1971 and 1984 the head of Queen Elizabeth II by Arnold Machin was used, between 1985 and 1997 the head by Raphael Maklouf was used, and since 1998 one by Ian Rank-Broadley has been used. In all cases, the inscription used is ELIZABETH II D.G.REG.F.D. date.

See also British coinage.

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