The inscribed examples are unmistakably love tokens but we should still appreciate the skill and artwork involved.
The “Bender” love tokens are perhaps not so obvious. It is thought that a young man would prove his love to his young lady by physically bending a coin in front on her. Often this was done on sixpences but occasionally we see it on gold coins and copper coins. The theory is that if the young man gives the coin to the young lady and she keeps (treasures) it, then he’s a happy soul (and hopefully so is she). If she takes it and throws it away into the field, then maybe it’s time to move on to pastures new! The old Nursery Rhyme about the man finding a “crooked sixpence” was maybe based on finding a discarded bender love token?
The “Gem-Insert” later Victorian types epitomise the sentimental period from which they emanate.
William & Mary