1803 - Ceylon Government

Elephant Facing Right - 1/24 Rix-dollar

The Rare Two Stiver copper dump coin with Elephant Facing Right struck in Ceylon under contract in 1803 and 1805.

Denomination1/24 RixDollar
Diameter22.6 mm
Thickness 5.9 mm
Weight Legal18.14 gms
Weight17.72 gms
Die Axis 45°
1803_f24efr_cu-dump_obverse 1803_f24efr_cu-dump_reverse
Mitchiner Unlisted; Pridmore #50; Krause #70

Obverse : Within a beaded circle between two plain circles an elephant facing right. The year 1803 below
Reverse : Within a beaded circle between two plain circle :CEYLONGOVERNMENT The fraction of value to Rix Dollar 24 at center.

In 1803 May, a Mr. Jurgen Arnoldus Hikken who was appointed to the Trincomalee mint by the Dutch in 1790 is mentioned in the records as being engaged in striking a copper coinage at Jaffna. As none of the early copper coins have been separately identified as Jaffna issues of Mr. Hikken, it would seem that his coins were struck to the same standard as those of Mr. Blume and possibly from dies supplied to him. It is worthy of remark that the copper denominations of 1803 also occur with the elephant facing to the right, which may have been intentional and the method adopted to distinguish the several issues of the two contractors.

On 1805, February 9th, a third contract for copper coinage signed with Mr. Blume on continued to provide for a weight standard of 50 stivers to the pound avoirdupois, but another contract, dated signed 1805 June 5th, with a person named Chinna Tamby Chitty Shevesharanam Chitty, stipulated a weight of 48 stivers to the pound Dutch (158.8 troy grains each stiver). Like the Hikken coinage, the Tamby Chitty issues have not yet been separately identified, but the elephant facing right coins of 1805 are possibly his productions, as the specimen examined exceeds (21.20grams) the normal weight standard by 17%.

KMPridmore Year Legend Extra feature
70501803   :CEYLON.GOVERNMENT Elephant facing right
70541805   +CEYLON.GOVERNMENT Elephant facing right

Text from
* Ceylon Coins and Currency By H. W. Codrington. Colombo 1924
  Page 156 Chapter XI British - Coins struck in Ceylon. Plate 161

The coin was scanned at 600dpi and the images are displayed at 250dpi. It was purchased in 2004 January on Ebay from a UK dealer.

It was the first Elephant Right to sell on eBay since I kept track over 6 years ago. I had seen one for sale in lanka for typical $250 price. To Win this at the opening bid of GBP30 was my extream luck. It was not found by others since Sri Lanka and not Ceylon was mentioned in the Auction Listing !!