I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, Baby

There’s an old saying about poverty: “He’s so poor he doesn’t have two dimes to rub together.”

I thought about that when I found this tiny trinket in an antique store cabinet: two old Canadian dimes, hollowed out and nailed together:


And then turned into a locket:


I have no idea of the identity of this smiling gent with the slightly askew tie, but he looks like a charmer. The dimes are both George V, who ruled from 1911-1936; the coin dates would have been on the sides that were hollowed out. Love tokens from modified coins were popular in the 18th and 19th centuries, and sometimes given in place of an engagement ring. They were also given to girls from sailors as a promise they would return. Given the vintage of these coins, there’s a chance this man may have been a WW2 soldier. Either way, by that time, the love-token tradition would have been slightly archaic. Clearly this man was a romantic.

Dimes of this pre-war vintage would have been 80% silver, so a decent enough substitute for a store-bought silver locket. And fellas, while store-bought jewellry is always nice, there is nothing more romantic than a hand-hewn token of your love. Some lucky gal carried around her man in her pocket, perhaps even secretly, with the knowledge that he went to some effort to ensure a place in her heart.


1 thought on “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, Baby

  1. Pingback: Mrs. Malkin’s Purse « Ann Mayer

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s