Though the known history of the rock goes back to the Greeks
and Phoenicians, no, before that to the neandertals, there is no local
money before the British occupation. At the start of the 19th century
a series of copper merchant's tokens began which lasted about 20 years.
These came in quart and 2 quart denominations. The commonest by far
are the Robert Keeling 2 quarts of 1810. They usually come in banged
The tokens were succeeded in 1842 by regal
coins denominated ½, 1, and 2 quarts. I find these rather
No coins were struck for Gibraltar for 125
years. Then in 1967 the "crown" series began. These are common
in Unc, but I don't think they circulated. I've never seen one with
wear. The 1967 silver proof version is not common compared with others
of that ilk, such as the 1973 St. Helena crown, or Isle of Man material.
Decimal coins got off to a slow start in 1971
with the popular Barbary Ape crown, followed the next year with the silver
anniversary coin. Both are pretty easy to find in either copper-nickel
or silver. Crowns in both metals have continued to be issued to this
day. Gold was introduced in 1975. In 1988 a full British denomination
set was released.
I think it's fair to say at this point that
the people who handle Gibraltar's coin program have adopted an "Isle-of-Man"
type of strategy. Since 1988 there have been numerous issues of all
kinds of denominations, multiple types of a given denomination in a given
year, and off metal strikes in silver, gold, and platinum. On the
whole these are harder to come by than the IOM stuff. By and large
the basic coins are obtainable, but I've never sought out the gold and
platinum OMS pieces, so I can't compare them with anything.
Finally we have the gold and silver ecu coins,
meant to be the circulating precious metal ecu denominations, theoretically
spendable anywhere in the EC. I don't know about that. The
silver 10 pound is supposedly worth $18.00 face, more or less, which is
not a bad markup for a coin with $1.00 and something worth of silver in
it. The gold 50 pound is similarly overvalued, though not by quite
as large a margin. Like the Djibouti 1500 francs coin I discussed
elsewhere, their high face value has dampened their marketability, and
I can't imagine anyone would go and spend them, so I'm fairly confident
they won't be found in the future in circulated condition. Why carry
gold around when you can carry paper? (1994)