Sixpence (Australian)

The Australian sixpence circulated from 1910 up until the decimalisation of Australian Currency in 1966. The coins were initially minted in England; however, Australia began to mint their own from the year of 1916 at branches of the Royal Mint in Sydney and Melbourne (Wilson 1945, pp. 557). The coins which made up Australia's pre-decimal currency were identical to British currency in the characteristics of weight and size. The Coinage Act of 1909–1947, authorised the issue of Australian coins in the select denominations, including the sixpence (Wilson 1945, pp. 557). By 1916 all silver denominations, including the sixpence, could be minted at the Royal Mint branch in Melbourne (Pitt 2017, pp. 44). Unique Australian currency was created with decimalisation in 1966.

A sixpence of 1951, with the reverse side on the left

At the time of the sixpence, Australian lives were 'very English' (Murphy 2016). 'The money ran through nursery rhymes up to Shakespeare; on the land, "a pound for a pound" meant good news for wool growers; two-up schools needed pennies to play; and slang words for the money, zac, traybob, deena, and quid, littered the language' (Murphy 2016).


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