World Coins

Stephen Album auction features pig-headed Indian coins

The so-called pig-style elephant rupee from British India is among offerings in Steven Album Rare Coins’ Sept. 15 to 18 auction.

Images courtesy of Steven Album Rare Coins.

When Britain’s King George V acceded to the throne, becoming Emperor of India, it led to creation of a one-year type design that outraged many users of the coins.

Two examples of this design in action are offered in Stephen Album Rare Coins’ Sept. 15 to 18 auction, the firm’s 44th.

The 1911 accession to the throne of Emperor George V led to the famous “pig rupee.”

On the coin, the king appears wearing the chain of the Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire.

Because of poor engraving, the elephant looks somewhat like a pig. The Muslim population was enraged, and the image had to be quickly redesigned, according to the auction house.

The firm offers a quarter rupee with the so-called pig-style elephant. It is cataloged as KM-517 in the Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1901-2000, by Chester Krause and Clifford Mishler.

The coin is graded Mint State 63 by Professional Coin Grading Service, and has a pre-sale estimate of $200 to $300.

A PCGS graded MS-64 example of the rupee, cataloged as KM-523, is also offered, with a pre-sale estimate of $400 to $600.

Full details of the auction are available at the website

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