Canada Penny Getting Retired

According to Canada’s recently-released 2012 federal budget plan, the Royal Canadian Mint will stop making new pennies in 2012. The penny will remain legal tender (in other words you can still spend your pennies), but no more new pennies will be made. This means that pennies will slowly disappear as they are lost, tossed, returned to

Reading Arabic Numbers and Dates

There are several modern numeral systems used in the world today that use symbols other than 1, 2, 3, 4, 5… (known frequently as Western Arabic or European numerals) that many of us are familiar with. Japanese, Thai, and Arabic are just a few examples of languages that use different symbols to represent numbers. For a world

Smiley-Face Penny

A smiley-face penny I recently found this in a bag of mixed foreign coins – a US penny with a smiley face (smile) cut into it. Actually it looks more like it is laughing, which I think is a bit unique. The coin is a 1992 D US penny, which means that it is made

Croatia Joining the European Union

Croatia 10, 20, and 50 lipa coins On January 22, 2012, citizens of Croatia voted to approve their country joining the European Union (Croatia first applied to the EU in 2003). If the membership is ratified by the other 27 EU members, then Croatia will become the 28th European nation to join the Union on

Coins with Holes (Holed Coins)

  Ancient Chinese “cash” coin Americans, when asked about coins with holes in them, probably picture the old Chinese “cash” coins which are featured so prominently in Chinese-style decor.  These coins had a square-shaped hole in the center, with Chinese characters around it.  The United States has never had a coin with a hole in

World Coin News Blog

There is a blog that I like to check out frequently, at least once a week. World Coin News, run by David Rivera of Spain, has been running since 2006 posting about new world coins as they are released, found, or otherwise announced. Posts are usually accompanied by a photo or other picture of the

Australia’s $50 Million Coin

In October 2011, Australia’s Perth Mint unveiled a project that they had spent the last 18 months creating – a coin more than 30 inches (80 cm) across, 4 inches (12 cm) thick, weighing over 2200 pounds (1000 kg) and made of solid gold.  The coin has a denomination (value printed on the coin) of $1,000,000 Australian dollars, but

Great Britain’s 2008 Coin Redesign

2008 redesign (missing 50 pence coin at bottom) In 2008, Great Britain redesigned the reverses of their common coinage for the first time since the conversion to decimal in 1968. According to the Royal Mint, a public competition was held to come up with ideas. It was wildly popular, with more than 4000 different designs being

Tracking Your Collection Online

When your coin collection is small, it is easy to keep track of what coins you have using your memory alone, a notebook, or even just a piece of paper. But as it gets bigger, you’re not going to be able to remember exactly which coins you have, and trying to look in your notebook

Square Coins

Square coins are my favorite unusual coin shape. Being from the United States, a square coin is very different from the money I’m used to – it seems quite exotic, the epitome of a “foreign” coin. The square shape seems somewhat impractical – it doesn’t roll, and it seems like getting a vending machine or