Sovereign (various dates)
A Gold Sovereign is a gold coin first issued in 1489 for Henry VII of England and still in production as of 2008. The gold content was fixed at the present 113 grains (7.322 g)
Capital Gains Tax exempt.
- Gold Content: 0.2354 oz
- Minimum Gross Weight: 7.98 g
- Purity: 22 ct
The Sovereign Queen Elizabeth II coin is one of the longest lasting of gold bullion coins, largely due to the longevity of Queen Elizabeth II herself. There are a few different version available, with pre-decimal Sovereign Queen Elizabeth coins being the most sought-after by collectors, aside from special edition releases to commemorate royal weddings and other special events.
The Sovereign Queen gold coin itself is of high quality, 22 carats, its gold content amounting to 0.2354oz. The weight of the coin in its entirety is 7.98g and it has a diameter of 22.05mm. It is 1.52mm thick with a milled edge.
The pre-decimal Sovereign Queen Elizabeth features a portrait by Mary Gillick, which lasted until 1974 when it was replaced by Arnold Machin’s version, which was actually made in 1968. This second sovereign portrait was somewhat controversial for the time, with Sir John Betjeman labelling it “Racy”. Despite this, it is considered a beloved, less formal portrait by many.
The Sovereign itself dates back to the 15th century and the reign of Henry VII, which makes it one of the world’s oldest coins still in circulation. The Sovereign, along with other gold coins, made up the currency of its day until it was considered unwise to have the country’s gold tied up in the general currency. By the end of The First World War this policy began to change.
The Sovereign Queen Elizabeth II became official gold bullion in 1979, but has remained highly popular with collectors. The infamous Machin portrait was replaced in 1985 by Raphael Maklouf’s third version of the sovereign queen. The Sovereign has since been released in fits and starts, but its popularity remains high among both collectors and investors. This is partly due to the reputation of The Royal Mint and the coin’s historic value.