Great Britain 1803 1/2 guinea

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Goldberg sale 75, lot 3295
Great Britain 1803 half guinea rev G75-3295.jpg

This specimen was lot 3295 in Goldberg sale 75 (Los Angeles, September 2013), where it did not sell. The catalog description[1] noted, "Great Britain. Half Guinea, 1803. George III. Obverse, 6th laureate head, reverse, crowned shield in garter. The last date with this portrait, and in some ways a mule with the 'military head' reverse design. Well struck and an impressive coin which catalogues at over $1000 in XF in the Spink catalogue." This type was struck 1801-03, presumably to pay soldiers and sailors during the Napoleonic Wars. Domestically, Great Britain operated on paper Bank of England notes; the gold standard would not be resumed until after Waterloo. The reform of 1817 terminated all guinea-denominated issues in favor of the sovereign. As the guinea was 21 shillings, this coin would have been ten shillings, six pence.

Recorded mintage: unknown but not rare.

Specification: 4.17 g, .917 fine gold, .123 troy oz AGW.

Catalog reference: S. 3736, Fr-363, KM-649.


  • 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.
  • Michael, Thomas, and Tracy L. Schmidt, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 9th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2019.
  • [1]Goldberg, Ira, Larry Goldberg, Jason Villareal and Steven Harvey, Goldberg Sale 75: the pre-Long Beach Sale, Los Angeles: Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, 2013.

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