Eighteenth-century Hanoverian, King George I, adorns the third in the Royal Mint’s ‘British Monarchs’ series
The ‘British Monarchs Collection’ is the latest multi-year programme of proof coins, and will reproduce key coins from four of the major royal families, Tudor, Stuart, Hanover, and the latest, Saxe-Coburg, Gotha & Windsor. There will be 21 coins launched over a five-year period, consisting of four silver (1, 2, 5, 10 oz) and three gold (1, 2, 5 oz).
Each release will take close inspiration from an important period coin of a selection of monarchs, and we’ve already had a superb Henry VII release, and an equally excellent James I issue. As we enter the 18th century, the quality of coins improved immensely, so the Royal Mint certainly has better source material to draw from. The downside, for me at least, is that the coins differ little from modern ones, so, as you can see from this latest George I issue, they lose a bit of that visibly ‘old feel’ of the first two designs in this series.
Still, this is a fine example of the period, and you can’t argue with the quality of the reproduction by John Croker. The obverse carries the usual effigy of the current monarch, by Jody Clark. Available later today, the coins all come boxed with C.O.A.’s, and have prices ranging from £95.00 for the one-ounce silver, up to £12,015.00 for the five-ounce gold.
Born in Germany to a powerful European family, the ascension of George I in 1714 to the British throne came about in difficult and unprecedented circumstances. Despite this, the arrival of the House of Hanover in Britain led to nearly 200 years of royal stability, whilst the fabric of British society rapidly changed. It was during George I’s reign that sovereign power began to shift to the modern system of cabinet government, and many considered Georgian coins the finest in the world at the time.
The British Monarchs range will feature 21 coins over five years and will span four Royal Houses – Tudor; Stuart; Hanover; Saxe-Coburg, Gotha, and Windsor – remastering iconic designs in high definition for the first time thanks to the latest technology and minting techniques. The reverse of the latest coin features a coinage portrait of George I, while the obverse features Jody Clark’s definitive portrait of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
The eighteenth-century monarch appears on this new coin in the same classic design that would have featured on the coins of the Hanoverian era. Whilst the design first appeared on British coinage more than 300 years ago, this coinage portrait has been faithfully recreated as close to the original as possible using state-of-the-art technology.
Unlike the previous coins of the Tudor and Stuart era, the Hanoverian period saw an advancement of the minting process into mechanisation. Coinage at this time was vastly superior in quality to the hammered coins that came before, with improved lettering and portraiture showing a genuine likeness to the monarch, and these characteristics have been faithfully recreated in the new George I portrait design.
Rebecca Morgan, Director of Collector Services at The Royal Mint, said: “There is strong appeal for collectors with this coin series. Coins from the Hanoverian period are coveted by collectors for their iconic design, and the effigies have been faithfully recreated in fine detail using state-of-the-art technology and numismatic processes. People love to collect the designs of previous eras, and the British Monarchs series allows collectors the opportunity to add a coin with every monarch to their collection.”
The Hanoverians came to power in difficult circumstances that looked set to undermine the stability of British society. For all that, the Hanoverian period was remarkably stable, not least because of the longevity of its monarchs. From 1714 through to 1901, there were only six monarchs, one of whom, George III, remains the longest reigning king in British History. Queen Victoria then surpassed her grandfather in both age and length of reign.
In addition to these individual coins, The Royal Mint will also be releasing a limited number of sets with historic coins from the reign of George I. These limited-edition sets will feature a British Monarchs coin alongside a genuine historical coin from the era featuring the monarch’s portrait.
|DENOMINATION||£500 UKP||£200 UKP||£100 UKP|
|COMPOSITION||0.9999 gold||0.9999 gold||0.9999 gold|
|WEIGHT||156.30 grams||62.42 grams||31.21 grams|
|DIMENSIONS||50.0 mm||40.0 mm||32.69 mm|
|DENOMINATION||£10 UKP||£10 UKP||£5 UKP||£2 UKP|
|COMPOSITION||0.999 silver||0.999 silver||0.999 silver||0.999 silver|
|WEIGHT||312.59 grams||156.30 grams||62.86 grams||31.21 grams|
|DIMENSIONS||65.0 mm||65.0 mm||40.0 mm||38.61 mm|
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