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The McManus: Dundee's Art Gallery and Museum

Albert Square




tel: +44 (0)1382 432380




email: [email protected]



Contact details: Christina Donald


Date of visit: 16 October 2013


Nature and extent of collection


6,000 pieces. The Numismatics collection consists of some 6,000 objects relating to Dundee, Scotland, Britain and Europe, the Classical World, and other countries around the world.  Examples include coins, trade tokens, communion tokens, and military medals. The classical collection, the ‘Paton Gloag collection’ is of particular note and is believed to be of national importance.


Future Collecting:


Active collecting will take place to add numismatic objects to the collection that provide context for the human history of Dundee, especially in a local context, but also in a national and international context where deemed appropriate.  Active and passive collecting will be undertaken for the following categories:


• Coins

- Priority will be given to any Scottish mints currently not in the collection that would fill a gap in the collection.

- Examples of new coinage will be actively collected.

• Banknotes

- Examples of new banknotes will be actively collected.

• Tokens

• Seals

• Medals

• Medallions



All numbers below are estimated


Greek coins: 60

Roman coins: 1,000

British coins: British = 150; Scottish = 50

British tokens: 2,000

European coins: 150

Asian coins: 750

Middle Eastern coins: 200

African coins: 10

American coins: 50

Oceania: 25

Modern and paper money: 220

Medals: 750

Paranumismatica: 65

Other: 550

Specific strengths: Local interest, Roman Imperial, Chinese.


Library: Around 100 volumes with specific strengths in Roman, Greek, English and World coinage. The library collection was recently updated by an intern working on numismatics.





Database used: Adlib.


Proportion of collection on database: 100%


How much detail in database entries? This varies from record to record.


Are images incorporated? Yes, around 10% of records include images.


Is the database accessible to the public? No.


Is the database publicly accessible online? What is the URL if so? No, but selected images are available to view online:





Are there permanent numismatic displays? No.


Is numismatic material incorporated into more general displays? Yes.


Is there a facility for temporary exhibitions? Yes.


Have there been numismatic exhibitions in the past? If so, what? Not in the recent past.



Access to the collection


Is there a study facility? Yes.


Is equipment (balances, magnifying glasses, etc.) provided? Yes.



Public engagement with numismatic collection


Is there a handling collection? This issue is currently under review.


Are numismatic collections used in Education sessions? No.


Do numismatic collections feature in gallery talks, lectures? Yes.


Are there other engagement activities based around numismatic collections? No.



ID and public enquiries


Does the museum offer a service for identifying objects and other public enquiries? Yes.



Curatorial knowledge


Is there any numismatic expertise in-house? If so, who, and in what areas? Museums Galleries Scotland numismatics intern is now a curator, but does not have responsibility for the numismatics collections.


Is there access to external expertise? If so, who and in what areas? Yes, from other museums.


If there is expertise in-house, is there a willingness/capacity to share that with other museums? N/A