Coins of the Maltese lira

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2 cents coin (1976)

Coins of the Maltese Lira have been struck from when Malta adopted decimal currency in 1972, to 2007, after which Malta adopted the Euro. There were 10 mils in one cent, and 100 cents in one Maltese lira.

First series (1972-1982)[edit]

The coins in this series replaced the pre-decimal Pound Sterling which had been in use in Malta since 1825. Therefore the sizes for some coins were similar to their pre-decimal equivalents, for example the 5c was similar to the shilling and the 10c to the two shillings. These coins were designed by Christopher Ironside OBE.

In June 1975 an octagonal 25 cent coin was introduced to commemorate Malta becoming a republic within the Commonwealth of Nations on 13 December 1974. The new coat of arms appeared on the obverse side, and the 25c coin was the first coin to depict the new republic coat of arms.

Image Value Diameter Composition Edge Obverse Reverse first minting withdrawal
[1] 2 mils 19mm Aluminium plain Maltese Cross Value 1972 1986
[2] 3 mils 22mm Aluminium plain A bee on a honeycomb Value 1972 1986
[3] 5 mils 26mm Aluminium plain Oil lamp Value 1972 1986
[4] 1 cent 25mm Bronze plain George Cross Value 1972 1986
[5] 2 cent 17mm Cupronickel milled Penthesilea wearing an elm Value 1972 2008
[6] 5 cent 23.59 Cupronickel milled Megalithic altar Value 1972 1986
[7] 10 cents 28.52 mm Cupronickel milled Maltese galley Value 1972 1986
[8] 25 cents 28 mm Brass plain Coat of arms of Malta Value 1975 1994
[9] 50 cents 32 mm Cupronickel plain Great Siege Monument Value 1972 1994

Second series (1986-2007)[edit]

A new series was issued on 19 May 1986, which consisted of 1, 2, 5, 10, 25, 50 cents and 1 lira, all depicting local flora and fauna on the obverse and the republican coat of arms on the reverse. The 1 lira coin was introduced in this series, replacing a former banknote.[1] In 1988 a new coat of arms was adopted showing a heraldic representation of the Maltese flag, a mural crown and a wreath of olive and palm trees. The coin series of 1991 depicted the new coat of arms, but the reverse side remained the same.

This series remained in use until 2007, being withdrawn in January 2008 upon the introduction of the Euro. They were demonetised in 2010.

Second Series [10]
Image Value € equiv. Technical parameters Description Date of
Diameter Mass Composition Edge Obverse Reverse first minting withdrawal lapse
[11] 1 cent 0.02 cent 18.51 mm 2.81 g Copper, zinc, a slight percentage of nickel Plain Coat of arms Ballottra (weasel) 1986
31 January 2008[2] 1 February 2010[2]
[12] 2 cents 0.04 cent 17.78 mm 2.26 g Cupronickel Milled Coat of arms Zebbuga (olive tree) 1986
31 January 2008[2] 1 February 2010[2]
[13] 5 cents 0.12 cent 19.78 mm 3.51 g il-Qabru (Maltese freshwater crab)
[14] 10 cents 0.23 cent 21.78 mm 5.01 g Lampuka (dolphin fish)
[15] 25 cents 0.58 cent 24.95 mm 6.19 g Incused beading Ghirlanda (evergreen rose)
[16] 50 cents 1.16 27 mm 8 g Lettered Tulliera (Maltese Fleabane), an evergreen plant that grows in the Mediterranean region
[17] Lm1 2.33 29.82 mm 13 g Nickel Merrill (Blue Rock Thrush), the national bird
For table standards, see the coin specification table.