Author Topic: Troubled coins  (Read 18062 times)

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Offline FosseWay

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #135 on: August 08, 2020, 05:10:56 PM »
It's interesting that the denominations have been smoothed away before the UP DEV was punched. There should be "½d" above the pigs and "leath phingin" below (sorry, I can't reproduce the points on the uncial script).

Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #136 on: August 08, 2020, 05:38:13 PM »
It's interesting that the denominations have been smoothed away before the UP DEV was punched. There should be "½d" above the pigs and "leath phingin" below (sorry, I can't reproduce the points on the uncial script).
It's odd that for as many of these old pennies I've seen that I hadn't noticed the missing legends. Just before I attached the image I took another look at it and thought something didn't look right and suddenly realized what it was.

It's unusual that any particular effort is made to modify the coins in an artistic way such as this. Usually, someone just takes a set of punches and bangs away. Apparently, the maker had a great deal of respect for De Valera and wanted the "badge" to reflect that. I say "badge" because it must have been worn for a long period of time by taking into account the broken-through hole.

Another oddity about this early political piece is the condition of the obverse. It's badly scarred and corroded unlike the near pristine surfaces of the reverse. I'll post an image as soon as I can resize it and would appreciate your comments.

Bruce
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Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #137 on: August 08, 2020, 05:49:36 PM »
Well, that was easy. I'd already resized the coin but just hadn't posted it.

This side of the coin is a real mess. It looks to have been resting on something that caused the pitting. The scratches and damage I think was caused by something entirely different. The extreme difference in condition of both sides is very puzzling.

Bruce
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Offline FosseWay

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #138 on: August 08, 2020, 06:29:45 PM »
I'm afraid I've no idea either. What is the greyish material? Has the coin been plated with something, which has then worn off during the damage?

Online Figleaf

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #139 on: August 08, 2020, 06:42:20 PM »
I think the harp side was glued onto something, such as a wooden round box with a wide decorative border. I would say Miss Piggy and the piglets were repeatedly polished to a shine. The  maker may have wanted to create a "medal", meant to be worn in public, perhaps during a parade? This idea may also explain the missing denomination: the denomination would not look good on a medal.

BTW, what do you make of UP? Unionist Party would be at odds with De Valera, wouldn't it?

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline FosseWay

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #140 on: August 08, 2020, 07:16:07 PM »
UP = up  ;)

As in "not down".

Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #141 on: August 09, 2020, 11:15:03 AM »
Up is used fairly commonly in Nationalist slogans such as "UP THE IRA" with the meaning being as FosseWay says.It promotes or uplifts a person, organization or agenda. Here it would probably be interpreted differently, like "Up Yours"! ;D  Very rude.

Actually, the use of the word gave me the first clue that the con might be political. It was offered with two other obviously Nationalist issues. After searching a bit, I found the connection to De Valera.

Bruce
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Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #142 on: August 09, 2020, 12:00:00 PM »
I think the harp side was glued onto something, such as a wooden round box with a wide decorative border. I would say Miss Piggy and the piglets were repeatedly polished to a shine. The  maker may have wanted to create a "medal", meant to be worn in public, perhaps during a parade? This idea may also explain the missing denomination: the denomination would not look good on a medal.

BTW, what do you make of UP? Unionist Party would be at odds with De Valera, wouldn't it?

Peter
No doubt it was meant to be displayed, and prominently. The closest guess I have as to what's on the back is it looks like paint. I still can't fathom the reason for the damage which appears to be purposeful. Anti-Home Rule Loyalists routinely damaged Irish coins in those years, and still do, but it's a Nationalist slogan, so how does that fit? I have to think about this a little more and take another look at the coin.

Bruce
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Online Figleaf

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #143 on: August 09, 2020, 05:18:43 PM »
This is really speculative, but if the white stuff is indeed glue, the scratching may have been done to solve a problem. Glue does not hold well on a smooth surface. In particular, a shock (like falling on hard ground can shatter it. The solution is to make smooth surfaces rough. BTW, the same problem and solution occurs with paint put on in multiple layers. Except for the upper layer, each layer should be roughened somewhat.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline FosseWay

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #144 on: August 09, 2020, 05:19:37 PM »
It's probably over-thinking the issue, but the anti-treaty side in the Civil War (the losing side) were against the concept of the Free State (Saorstát Éireann) on two counts. Firstly, for them "Ireland" as a political entity was the same as the geographical term denoting the island. The Irish constitution paid lip-service to this, in laying claim to the six counties in the North that were/are still part of the UK, but the whole point of the pro-treaty side in the Civil War was that they would not press this claim. Ultimately it was removed as part of the Good Friday Agreement, but that was much later.

Secondly, the country was known at first as the Irish Free State / Saorstát Éireann for a reason. It was not Poblacht na hÉireann / Republic of Ireland, which was the state proclaimed by the rebels in 1916 and which the war of independence thereafter was seeking to establish. Ireland in 1922 essentially became a dominion within the British Empire, along the same lines as Canada, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. It still technically recognised the king as head of state. This was not acceptable to the anti-treaty group, who wanted nothing less than a proper republic.

The anti-treaty party was effectively frozen out of political life in Ireland for the first decade of independence. De Valera's Fianna Fáil party was elected for the first time in 1932, and Dev became "president of the executive council" (another way in which Ireland's independence was circumscribed by the terms of the treaty with the UK - anywhere else would have had a prime minister). Some of the more obvious trappings of dominionship were removed in the constitutional change of 1937, when the office of taoiseach (prime minister) was created and the name of the country officially changed to Éire or Poblacht na hÉireann. We see this change on the coins from 1937 onwards.

This state of affairs was formalised in 1948, when the declaration of the republic was made explicit. Unlike India and Pakistan, which did likewise around the same time, Ireland also left the Commonwealth.

Anyway, the point of all that is that not all Irish people liked or agreed with the notion of the Free State. For them, defacing the emblems of that state, especially its name, was as obvious a thing to do as defacing the emblems of the occupier a decade earlier. And the most obvious person such antipathy would have coalesced around was De Valera, hence the UP DEV on one side and the defacement on the other.

Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #145 on: August 10, 2020, 11:28:22 AM »
It's probably over-thinking the issue, but the anti-treaty side in the Civil War (the losing side) were against the concept of the Free State (Saorstát Éireann) on two counts. Firstly, for them "Ireland" as a political entity was the same as the geographical term denoting the island. The Irish constitution paid lip-service to this, in laying claim to the six counties in the North that were/are still part of the UK, but the whole point of the pro-treaty side in the Civil War was that they would not press this claim. Ultimately it was removed as part of the Good Friday Agreement, but that was much later.

Secondly, the country was known at first as the Irish Free State / Saorstát Éireann for a reason. It was not Poblacht na hÉireann / Republic of Ireland, which was the state proclaimed by the rebels in 1916 and which the war of independence thereafter was seeking to establish. Ireland in 1922 essentially became a dominion within the British Empire, along the same lines as Canada, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. It still technically recognised the king as head of state. This was not acceptable to the anti-treaty group, who wanted nothing less than a proper republic.

The anti-treaty party was effectively frozen out of political life in Ireland for the first decade of independence. De Valera's Fianna Fáil party was elected for the first time in 1932, and Dev became "president of the executive council" (another way in which Ireland's independence was circumscribed by the terms of the treaty with the UK - anywhere else would have had a prime minister). Some of the more obvious trappings of dominionship were removed in the constitutional change of 1937, when the office of taoiseach (prime minister) was created and the name of the country officially changed to Éire or Poblacht na hÉireann. We see this change on the coins from 1937 onwards.

This state of affairs was formalised in 1948, when the declaration of the republic was made explicit. Unlike India and Pakistan, which did likewise around the same time, Ireland also left the Commonwealth.

Anyway, the point of all that is that not all Irish people liked or agreed with the notion of the Free State. For them, defacing the emblems of that state, especially its name, was as obvious a thing to do as defacing the emblems of the occupier a decade earlier. And the most obvious person such antipathy would have coalesced around was De Valera, hence the UP DEV on one side and the defacement on the other.
Your point's well taken and probably correct. I do know that both sides use defacements to make a point and it doesn't make sense that a unionist would destroy one side and not go back and deface the counterstamps.

Peter also has an interesting take with his theory that the piece was glued or attached in another way to something. Under that scenario the cross-hatching of the fastening material to make it a stronger bond is a possibility. If true, it can't be considered a purposeful defacement. It just makes it a coin that was used as a show of support for De Valera.

Bruce
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Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #146 on: September 30, 2020, 05:11:10 PM »
This coin, a 1954 Irish Florin, is another piece from what I call the Belfast Collection. It's stamped across the reverse "ODWC" an acronym for the common Nationalist phrase "our day will come" (Tiochfaidh ar la). It of course id a call to the day when the Nationalist cause will prevail in a united Ireland.

Although a common phrase of Nationalists for many years, it was popularized in recent times by Long Kesh prisoner Bobby Sands. He was the IRA prison commander and face of the movement who died during the hunger strike of 1981. During his incarceration he kept a diary titled "Ons Day in My Life" a copy of which was smuggled out of the prison. The last line in his diary was "Our day will come."

The seller's father had only a brief entry in his notes.


          "ODWC": 03/07/77 Received in change in a newsagents in Newtownards!!!


Some additional notes in a way of explanation were offered by the seller


          "ODWC" refers to the Republican slogan "Our day will come". Newtownards is a town not far from Belfast. It is a staunch Loyalist town and this may explain my father's exclamation marks."

"ODWC" stamps are quite rare and but are seen ocassionally with other slogans or acronyms.


Bruce



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Online Figleaf

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #147 on: September 30, 2020, 06:49:58 PM »
Glad you are preserving the explanation of these counterstamps.

This is a reflection of a loathsome sentiment of taking lynchings and other forms of private justice for justice. It isn't. Justice is justice only when all proper procedures are observed.

I am strongly reminded of what was known in the Netherlands as bijltjesdag, the day of the axes. The term was used for a "settlement of accounts" with collaborators, members of the pro nazi NSB party, profiteers and girlfriends of members of the occupation military. As European countries were liberated, lynchings occurred. In Italy, around 150 000 to 200 000 people were murdered and many more abused. In France, there were an estimated 10 000 extra-judicial murders, in Belgium the number is estimated at 1 000. The Dutch government in exile took these warning to heart and launched an extensive propaganda campaign against the concept of bijltjesdag. They promised fast justice for all sinners and created a temporary military government for liberated areas. The illegal press, the resistance and the churches made a clear stand against bijltjesdag.

Still, there were a number of cases of abuse, but they were individual and unorganised. A group of 130 000 to 175 000 people were locked up in improvised camps, where more abuse, hunger and insufficient sanitation were normal. Most of those arrested were let off without a trial. Yet, some of the worst offenders were executed or locked up, sometimes for the rest of their life. The episode, imperfect as it was, stilled the thirst for blood and revenge on the guilty, not so guilty and innocent alike.

Peter
« Last Edit: Today at 02:34:07 PM by Figleaf »
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #148 on: Today at 11:34:11 AM »
Not unlike this one, Peter. (a UVF mural on Mt. Vernon's Shoe Rd. in North Belfast). While researching OTWC I came across a startling number. Nearly a half of the 3,500 deaths during the Troubles occured in North Belfast.

Bruce
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Offline brandm24

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Re: Troubled coins
« Reply #149 on: Today at 04:24:05 PM »
While rechecking my census figures I see that I've only registered two examples of the "ODWC" counterstamp. Both are on Irish Florins and in my collection. Rarer than I thought.

Bruce
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