Great Britain 1687 guinea Fr-295

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Goldberg sale 98, lot 2429
Great Britain G98-2429r.jpg
This specimen was lot 2429 in Goldberg sale 98 (Los Angeles, June 2017), where it sold for $4,993.75. The catalog description[1] noted,
"Great Britain. Guinea, 1687. James II, 1685-1688. Second laureate bust left. Reverse: Crowned cruciform shields, scepters in angles. Evenly struck and well centered with remaining luster and pleasing old-gold toning. PCGS graded AU-58. WINGS. The guinea series was barely twenty years old when this coin was minted, and the Royal Mint had encountered a number of technical problems converting gold ore imported from Africa into smooth-looking, evenly struck coins. Melting the raw ore into fine-gold strips was largely the business of London goldsmiths. Alloys tended to include small black specks of silver, and these appeared on resulting coins. But not only was the metal unfamiliar, the machinery was also relatively novel, having quite recently replaced the age-old hammered method of producing coins. The coin we see here clearly experienced some use, but it is free of alloy problems and was sharply struck using considerable force. The result was indeed a fine golden Guinea."
This type was struck 1687-88. There is a similar type (KM 459.2) struck during the same years with an elephant and castle added below the king's bust; this marked gold obtained from Africa.

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: 8.35 g, .917 fine gold.

Catalog reference: S.3402; Fr-295; KM-459.1.


  • [1]Goldberg, Ira, Larry Goldberg, John Lavender, Yifu Che, Jason Villareal and Stephen Harvey, Goldberg Sale 98: the Pre-Long Beach Auction, Los Angeles: Goldberg Coins and Collectibles, 2017.
  • Cuhaj, George S., and Thomas Michael, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700, 6th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2014.
  • Friedberg, Arthur L. and Ira S. Friedberg, Gold Coins of the World, From Ancient Times to the Present, 7th ed., Clifton, NJ: Coin and Currency Institute, 2003.
  • Lobel, Richard, Mark Davidson, Allan Hailstone and Eleni Calligas, Coincraft's Standard Catalogue of English and UK Coins, 1066 to Date, London: Coincraft, 1995.
  • Skingley, Philip, ed., Standard Catalogue of British Coins: Coins of England & the United Kingdom, 46th edition, London: Spink & Son, 2011.

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