top of page
The Sovereign

My 1889 Sovereign

   The sovereign is one of the most iconic of Europe's golden coins. It weighs 7.89 grams and is made out of 22 carat gold alloyed with bronze or silver. The sovereign was first issued in the year 1817 by King George the third and was used for trade until roughly 1917 in Britain or for a little longer in places such as the Middle East or Australia. Ever since, sovereigns have continued to be struck for gold reserves or collectors and were used when Winston Churchill returned Britain to the gold standard in 1925. Most sovereigns feature George and the dragon (see image), a design from Benedetto Pistrucci which featured on the first 1817 gold sovereign... Since then the other monarchs have all issued sovereigns. Fun fact: a new monarch's head will always face the opposite way to that of his or her predecessor. The sovereign when used as part of the pre-decimal British coinage system had the value of one pound or 240 pennies (I own a lot of old pennies, but definitely not that many). My sovereign (pictures below) is a Victorian sovereign of 1889 featuring a jubilee head and of course Pistuccis' design of St George and the dragon. It should be noted that earlier sovereigns of Victoria have a shield design much sought after by collectors.

Sources and additional info :

bottom of page