The Royal Mint has released (27th July) one of their most impressive and sought-after gold coins, the traditional £5 gold piece. Equal in weight to five Sovereign coins, this massive gold piece was occasionally seen in circulation since its introduction in 1820. Circulation quality £5 pieces were minted in 1887 and again in 1893 with the last year £5 gold pieces minted for general circulation in 1902. However, this great coin was often produced for special mint and Proof sets, most notably in 1937 for the Coronation Proof Set of King George VI in 1937. The denomination was revived once again in 1980 as a premium collector coin. Not to be confused with commemorative £5 gold crowns, which have a slightly larger diameter, the traditional £5 gold piece depicts stunning detail of Benedetto Pistrucci’s acclaimed St. George slaying the dragon design introduced on original Sovereign coins in 1817. For the 2020-dated £5 gold pieces, the design has been digitally remastered from the original Pistrucci tooling, to ensure an accurate interpretation of his 200-year-old St. George and the dragon design.
As an addition to the 2020-dated £5 pieces, and in recognition of the 200th anniversary of the death of Britain’s longest-reigning king, they feature the royal cypher of King George III. This privy mark can be seen just to the right of the year on the reverse. George III’s royal cypher combined the king’s first initial with “R,” an abbreviation of “Rex,” which is Latin for “king.”
The cypher was a means of identification that appeared with the Royal Arms and has been designed by Royal Mint coin designer Kerry Davies for use on the 2020-dated Sovereign collection. Of particular importance with this anniversary was that gold one-Sovereign coins equal to 20 shillings were introduced during the last years of the reign of King George III. Sovereign coins replaced Guinea gold coins equal to 21 shillings and also saw the introduction of a comprehensive series of silver and copper coins, which were part of the Great Re-coinage Act of 1816.
The obverse side depicts the fifth effigy of HM Queen Elizabeth II created by Royal Mint engraver Jody Clark and introduced onto all circulation and many commemorative coins in 2015.
|39.94 g||36.02 mm||Brilliant Unc.||
Each gold Brilliant Uncirculated strike piece is encapsulated and presented in a polished hardwood case and is accompanied by a numbered certificate of authenticity. For additional information about this coin and other gold coins available from the Royal Mint, please visit their website.