Great Britain 1821 sovereign

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photo courtesy Stack's
Great Britain 1821 sovereign rev Stacks 110-808.jpg

This specimen was lot 808 in Stack's "Vermuele, Ward & Mexico Maxico" sale (New York, January 2010), where it sold for $1,380. The catalog description[1] noted, "GREAT BRITAIN. George IV, 1820-1837. Sovereign, 1821. Laureate head l. by Benedetto Pistrucci Rv. St. George and Dragon. Beautifully struck with substantial lustre. AU-55 (NGC)." As part of the monetary reform of 1817, the gold guinea of 21 shillings was dropped in favor of the sovereign of 20 shillings or one pound. This type, issued for George IV 1821-25, was minted in substantial numbers (about 23 million total) but is very scarce in nice condition. The sovereign would be struck for circulation through World War One and is still struck at the Royal Mint today but is sold as a bullion coin.

Recorded mintage: 9,405,000 (highest mintage date).

Specification: 7.99 g, .917 fine gold, .2354 troy oz AGW.

Catalog reference: Fr-376; S.3800, KM 682.


  • Bressett, Kenneth E., A Guide Book of English Coins, Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, 2nd Ed., Racine, WI: Whitman Publishing, 1962.
  • 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.
  • [1]Kraljevich, John, and Frank Van Valen, The Vermuele, Ward & Mexico Maxico Collections, New York: Stack's, 2009.
  • Michael, Thomas, and Tracy L. Schmidt, Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900, 9th ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2019.
  • Skingley, Philip, ed., Standard Catalogue of British Coins: Coins of England & the United Kingdom, 46th edition, London: Spink & Son, 2011.
  • Lobel, Richard, Mark Davidson, Allan Hailstone and Eleni Calligas, Coincraft's Standard Catalogue of English and UK Coins, 1066 to Date, London: Coincraft, 1995.

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