Great Britain 1686 5 guineas Fr-292

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Heritage sale 3073, lot 31097
GB H3073-31097r.jpg
This specimen was lot 31097 in Heritage sale 3073 (Chicago, April 2019), where it sold for $43,200. The catalog description[1] noted,
"James II gold 5 Guineas 1686 AU58 NGC. SECVNDO edge, denoting the second year of James's reign. An immense offering: the rarest year by far of James II's 5 Guineas, offered here in the highest certified grade awarded by either NGC or PCGS, with just six pieces graded in total. James II was nowhere near as popular as his brother Charles, and was vilified for his Catholicism and political decrees; accordingly, his reign was only for three short years before he was removed as monarch and replaced by his Protestant daughter Mary and her husband, William of Orange. Produced in the heyday of his reign when England, Ireland and Scotland still supported him as the divine monarch, this 5 Guineas resides on the very brink of Mint State with a fabulous portrait of James exhibiting no wear and only minor contact marks, exceptionally rendered so as to maximise the effect of Roettier's engraving. The planchet features subtle residual luster brightening the entire piece, hints of a reddish tone forming above the rich gold surfaces, minor marks in the field (in line with the grade) offering no detraction to the eye appeal of this wondrous, large-sized aurous offering. An absolute must-have for the grade-conscious collector of Five Guinea pieces, and a prize which only one collector may walk away with once the auction concludes."
This type was struck 1686-88. There is also KM 460.2, with an elephant and castle below bust, struck 1687-88.

Recorded mintage: unknown.

Specification: 41.75 g, .917 fine gold, 1.230 troy oz AGW.

Catalog reference: Fr-292, KM 460.1, S-3396.


  • [1]Bierrenbach, Cristiano and Warren Tucker, Heritage World and Ancient Coins Auction 3073, featuring the Lake County Collection of British coins, Dallas, TX: Heritage Auction Galleries, 2019.
  • 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, 9th ed., Clifton, NJ: Coin and Currency Institute, 2017.
  • 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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