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This is the first token listed in L. B. Fauver's 1982 "Exonumia Symbolism & Classification: A Catalogue of Kettle Pieces....................."

he lists it as Geo III 1793-1b (P) 19-20mm (B2070) R-7. b for brass, R-7 for 10-20 in existence. This was the only one of Kettle's imitation spades that Fauver could not illustrate as he was unable to find an example of it. So though it is not the "prettiest piece", to me it is a "beauty".

Neilson Counter # 2470.




It is an early imitation half spade guinea, actually struck in 1793, by Henry Kettle with the protruding center turning point of the die leaving its mark on the token. Used originally for use in gambling as a substitute for the real gold guineas so as their weight, hence value, was not compromised by wear(every merchant had a coin weight & balance) the later ones were used for advertising and still used for card games etc and were "back-dated".

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This link http://www.coinpeople.com/index.php?/topic/28731-imitation-spade-guineas/?&p=506831&hl=gaming&fromsearch=1&do=findComment&comment=506831 has a lot of info on the later series "There is an extensive series of over 1,000 different Imitation Spade Guineas"



Henry Kettle along with James Davies, Charles James, George Simcox & Wilmore & Alston Co were some of the early issuers of contemporary imitation spade guineas as well as some similar commemorative tokens, some of which are listed in D & H & BHM. Some of these are rare & quite in demand, the later imitations spades were produced in such bulk and are not in the same league. I collect Kettle tokens so to me this is a nice addition, I also have some of Wilmore & Aliston Co and Simcox.



Brass 20mm dated 1800 and issued at that time.
All imitation spade guineas were not created equal, some of the earliest were made contemporary to the spade guineas themselves(no genuine spades were dated 1800) and were well executed, like this 1/2 spade guinea by George Simcox & Timmins(the S & T below bust) of Livery street Birmingham. George Simcox active from 1791, a buckle & toy maker of Birmingham.





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  • 1 year later...
Beauty is not just in the eye of the beholder for this one.
1794 imitation spade guinea by Henry Kettle. Geo III 1794 2a plain edge R-7, Fauver.
Has been savagely cleaned but the detail is still superb, especially for an extremely rare piece. It is the best example that I have seen, the fact of it being cleaned might account for its very light colour but a term that Batty used sparingly "Pale Copper" for some other items, would fit.




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  • 1 month later...

Hello All


I recently found what I thought to be a real Full Spade Guinea, only for my research to lead me here. I seem to have the same token as the beauty highlighted by constanius. Not in quite as good nick, though not bad and a similiar colour.

I'm a little dissapointed as I thought I had my first mortgage payment covered. I found the token while clearing debris from between the joists of a prospective property.


Nevermind, it is a beaut and will look great in a display case along with many other finds, pipes, postcards, marbles, and even shoes (hidden for good luck apparently, though not as lucky as they may have been.)


Cheers all. If I manage to take a reasonable pic I will upload it.

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  • 11 months later...
  • 3 years later...

 Hi everyone, can someone please help me. I have one of these geo 1793 coins/tokens with the little round mark in the centre of it. But it says cox on the bottom of the coin/token. Is it a coin or a token. Any info be appreciated. I believe it could be really rare? I put a couple pictures below. Please let me know your thoughts on this coin/token. 

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It's a Simcox and until I'd checked I was unaware that they'd made them in this style without the laurel wreath edge. I'm not so sure about the depression in the middle. Can you check by running numerous diameters through the centre that the hole is actually central? I'm getting the impression that it may be post mint damage.

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