Great Britain 1853 florin

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Heritage sale 3010, lot 21178
Great Britain 1853 florin rev Heritage 3010-21178.jpg

This specimen was lot 21178 in Heritage sale 3010 (Boston, August 2010), where it sold for $2,070. The catalog description[1] noted, "Victoria Gothic Florin 1853, MS66 PCGS, a gorgeous Gem UNC, this one a little softly struck in one area at the center of reverse, which is how 90% of the coinage of this style seems to come, but the portrait is nice and sharp and the surfaces are completely original, the toning a deep, iridescent silvery golden gray with blue and gold highlights. Only a handful of Gothic florins have been given the MS66 grade by either service, as they are rare even in MS65. From the Guilford Courthouse Collection." This florin was Britain's first attempt to decimalize the pound (one florin = two shillings = 1/10 pound). It must have been popular, as it was struck in several variations 1848-87. There was even a brief issue of double florins. Full decimalization would have to wait until the 1960's, when the florin became the ten pence coin.

Recorded mintage: 3,920,000.

Specification: 11.31 g, .925 fine silver, .336 troy oz ASW.

Catalog reference: KM 746.1; S.3891.


  • [1]Tucker, Warren, Scott Cordry and John Kraljevich, Heritage Sale 3010: World Coins, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2010.
  • Lobel, Richard, Mark Davidson, Allan Hailstone and Eleni Calligas, Coincraft's Standard Catalogue of English and UK Coins, 1066 to Date, London: Coincraft, 1995.
  • Bressett, Kenneth E., A Guide Book of English Coins, Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, 2nd Ed., Racine, WI: Whitman Publishing, 1962.
  • 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.

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