Large Middle Eastern copper coin?

I have a WWI soldier's dog tag with names of battles in Turkey and Egypt. It's made from what I assume is a large copper Middle Eastern coin... worn absolutely slick with nothing of the original coin designs. It's big, though -- 37.3 mm, 21.0 grams. Most coins that big were silver. Can anyone come up with a candidate for a copper coin that big that might have been floating around the Middle East around 1916?

The closest I could find so far would be a 40 para from Turkey or Egypt. Those are 37.0 mm, so too small for this one. Since this is so heavily worn, I assume that the current 37.3 mm diameter comes from a coin that was originally a bit larger, maybe 37.5 to 38.0 mm as struck.

Any ideas?

[To save anyone from looking the rest up, I read the punched lettering as J. W. Roberts, 17th Royal Welsh Fusiliers 2831. The Landing at Sulva Bay (part of the Gallipoli Campaign) and the Egypt Campaign were major battles in WWI. The British fought against the Ottomans with lots of other smaller powers also involved on both sides.]


  • WorldCoinsDmitryWorldCoinsDmitry Posts: 280 ✭✭✭
    edited January 1, 2018 11:18PM

    The rounded edges are not those of a coin and if it was a coin with the edges shaved down and rounded, the original diameter would likely be around 38mm. I can't think of any copper coin that large which circulated in the Middle east around that time or recently prior.
    If this is indeed made from a coin, only thing that comes to mind is a heavily machined down Russian 5 or 10 kopeks of the late 18th to early 19th century types.

    Highly enthusiastic about world coins, contemporary circulating counterfeits and unusual stuff <3

  • jonathanbjonathanb Posts: 2,756 ✭✭✭

    I'm OK with the rounded edges on a coin worn this slick. Here is a similar example that I'm pretty sure is on a US silver dollar. Currently 37.5 mm (should be 38.1 mm), 21.6 grams (should be 26.73 grams).

    I'm having a hard time finding expected weights, but it looks like a 5 kopeks might be possible. Maybe even a 1840s-era 3 kopeks. Thanks for the leads!

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