50 CENT COIN - HONG KONG - KING GEORGE VI
Date: A.D. 1951
Obverse: Portrait crowned head left - KING GEORGE THE SIXTH
Reverse: Text - HONG KONG FIFTY CENTS 1951 (Chinese and English)
Engraver: Percy Metcalfe
Hong Kong is a city in China that was a British colony from 1842 to 1997. It was recently handed back to China with a guarantee that it would remain relatively autonomous until 50 years after the change over. This western style city stands in stark contrast to its surroundings nestled within a staunchly communist nation. While under British rule, as with all colonies, the coins bear the portrait of the reigning British monarch, in this case George VI.
Albert Frederick Arthur George Windsor became King George VI on the abdication of the throne by his brother King Edward VIII in 1936 and was the reigning monarch of England during the Second World War.
A somewhat reluctant King he oversaw the reduction of the British Empire under the Balfour Declaration and was an outspoken opponent of Britain's entrance into World War II favoring appeasement over conflict, a fact which he would be heavily criticized for.
He died of Lung Cancer in 1952 at the age of 56, he held the throne 16 years and was succeeded by his daughter Elizabeth II.