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Polytechnic Institute 1840

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Obv. Conjoined bare heads of Prince Albert and Queen Victoria left, within beaded circle. VICTORIA AND ALBERT 1840

Rev. Head of Britannia left, within beaded circle. POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTION LONDON


BHM#1917 WM. 28mm N. by A. J. STOTHARD(Medal Engraver to the Queen)


This piece was very probably struck on site for visitors to the Polytechnic Institution in Regent Street, London; the building was opened in 1837. Medals sold at exhibitions(at this time) had to be small and in soft metal, so they would come up in a single stroke. A print(1838) shows a screw press in the middle of the polytechnic's hall.


The only thing of note is the overstruck 4, I original thought it was over a 3 but now think it is over an 8. which makes it easier to understand how the error was made. My example has the same overstrike.


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Looking at the duplicated letters in 'VICTORIA AND ALBERT' the 'A's, 'R's & 'T's appear to be identical to each other, which would probably indicate that they were punched, so I would think the numerals were also punched. The puzzling thing about the error is the horizontal line near the top of the 4. So one possibility is maybe they tried to strike the 4 using a l, three times at diferent angles to make a 4 over the error 8, and struck the horizontal bar of the 4 too high & a touch to the left at first attempt.


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