Great Britain 1849 1/2 sovereign

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Heritage sale 3026, lot 24941
photo courtesy Heritage Auction Galleries
Sincona sale 51, lot 2554
The first specimen was lot 24941 in Heritage sale 3026 (Long Beach, October 2013), where it did not sell. The catalog description[1] noted, "Victoria gold Half Sovereign 1849, Young Head, MS65 PCGS, a lovely coin, some faint ticks in the mint frost but superior to most seen of this type, the queen's youthful portrait sharply detailed, and the reverse shield mostly sharp, the color a much-valued original gold, lighter on the obverse than on the reverse. Better date, too. Half sovereigns are generally rarer as a class, and certainly rarer in high grade, than sovereigns of this type." The second specimen was lot 2554 in Sincona sale 51 (Zurich, October 2018), where it sold for 275 CHF (about US$332 including buyer's fees). The catalog description[2] noted,
"Victoria, 1837-1901. 1/2 Sovereign 1849, London. Young head. Vorzüglich. Überdurchschnittliche Erhaltung. (kingdom of Great Britain, Victoria, 1837-1901, half sovereign of 1849, London mint, young head type. Extremely fine, Extraordinary condition.)"
This bust was used on the half sovereign, or ten shilling coin, 1838-85. This date is reasonably available.

Recorded mintage: 845,000.

Specification: 3.99 g, .917 fine gold, the second specimen 3.97 g.

Catalog reference: S-3859, Fr-389b; KM 735.1.


  • 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.
  • Bressett, Kenneth E., A Guide Book of English Coins, Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, 2nd Ed., Racine, WI: Whitman Publishing, 1962.
  • 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.
  • Michael, Thomas, and Tracy L. Schmidt, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 9th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2019.
  • [1]Bierrenbach, Cristiano, Warren Tucker and Scott Cordry, Heritage Signature Auction 3026, World & Ancient Coins, featuring the RLM Collection, Part Two, the Nogales Collection and the Goetz Medals Die Archive, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2013.
  • [2]Richter, Jurg, Sincona Auction 51: Gold and Silver Coins and Medals; Coins and Medals from Switzerland, Zurich: SINCONA AG, 2018.

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