(or copper plated) coins
are described as "red", referring to the dark red colour of a newly mint
Over time copper coins tarnish
and begin to turn green
. Constant handling removes some of the tarnish and as a result the coin will appear brown
often refer to a coin as "red" to indicate that it has been handled very little and not exposed to any elements
) that would cause it to tarnish. Because the metal is so soft, it is impossible to clean a copper coin and return it to a "red" state.