The first issue of George VI halfcrowns used the laureate head of the monarch by Benedetto Pistrucci as on the crowns, which was changed in 1824/25 to the Wyon portrait owing to king’s disapproval of his portrayal.
The reverse underwent two major changes of design, resulting in 1825 in obverse and reverse both very similar to those on the 1826 proof crown. The axis alignment reverted to that used on pre-George III coinage. It is not generally appreciated that the reverses include the carefully hidden initials both of William Wellesley Pole, master of the Mint, the centres of the shamrocks, and those of Johann Baptiste Merlen, designer of the reverse, in the beading around the rim.
Despite the King’s disapproval, this breathtaking Proof Halfcrown, deeply toned and flawless is a testament to the mastery of its engraver William Wyon.