The Royal Mint’s flagship Britannia proof coin range for 2023 debuts in a full range of sizes and in silver, gold, and platinum
The 2023 proof Britannia range, arguably the Royal Mint’s flagship product, has debuted today, with an all-new design by Jonathan Olliffe, and using the effigy of King Charles III by Martin Jennings. As always, there’s a big range of sizes and sets to choose from, but there only appears to ba a core range so far, with no sign of the ‘Exclusive Edition’, sporting a distinct design, that we’ve had for the last two years.
Olliffe has done a great job creating something distinct for the 2023 release. Britannia is depicted in her usual flowing robes and Corinthian-style helmet, carrying her shield and trident, but there’s no traditional lion in sight. Instead, Britannia has an aquatic chariot pulled by a pair of what we can only describe as merhorses, basically a horse with flippers and scales on its lower parts. We’re sure some will bemoan the missing traditional elements, but we’re impressed by the dynamism, and maritime nature of it.
2023 PROOF FINISH
As always, and despite the lack of an exclusive edition, there’s a healthy selection of formats. If you want a solitary coin, you have the choice of silver (5 oz, 2 oz, 1 oz), gold (1/4 oz, 2 oz, 5 oz), and platinum (1/4 oz). Sets of gold coins include a 3-coin, and a 6-coin, and silver has a 6-coin set as well. There’s a whole range of fractional coins with a frosted finish in gold and silver, each with four coins in them, going down to that microscopic 1/40 oz offering, rocking an 8 mm diameter. Despite their diminutive nature, they appear to keep up detail levels.
All the sets and individual coins here are now available to buy from the Royal Mint and associated dealers. It’s good to see this series maintain its reputation for varied design, despite the constraints of laser-focus on a single figure, and there’s a wide range of sizes to suit most budgets. Whether we see an Exclusive Edition remains to be seen, but this design does the business for us, regardless.
2023 FROSTED FINISH
|SPECIFICATION (INDIVIDUALLY SOLD COINS)
|DENOMINATION||£2 UKP||£5 UKP||£10 UKP||£25 UKP||£200 UKP||£500 UKP||£25 UKP|
|COMPOSITION||0.999 silver||0.999 silver||0.999 silver||0.9999 gold||0.9999 gold||0.9999 gold||0.9995 platinum|
|WEIGHT||31.21 grams||62.86 grams||156.30 grams||7.80 grams||62.42 grams||156.30 grams||7.85 grams|
|DIMENSIONS||38.61 mm||40.0 mm||65.0 mm||22.0 mm||40.0 mm||50.0 mm||20.0 mm|
2023 TWO-COIN FROSTED/PROOF 1 OZ SILVER SET
What is looking to be an increasingly common trend from the mint, the recent Tudor Beast issue had one, there’s also a set comprising a one-ounce proof silver coin, and a frosted proof variant with the same weight. There have been sets available in the past that were exclusive to dealers like LPM or APMEX, but we’re seeing the Royal Mint sell them directly now.
An attractive combination, the pair come boxed, of course, and with a mintage of 520 units. At £195.00, it’s also a relatively affordable way to pick up something a little more unique than the norm.
|SET||GOLD 3-COIN||GOLD 6-COIN||GOLD FROSTED 4-COIN||SILVER 6-COIN||SILVER FROSTED 4-COIN|
The Royal Mint, official maker of UK coins, has today launched its annual Britannia coin collection. This is the first opportunity for collectors to own a commemorative Britannia coin bearing His Majesty King Charles III’s official portrait.
This year’s Britannia coin design has been created by Jonathan Olliffe, who previously designed the Gymnastics 50p coin for the 2012 London Olympics. Jonathan’s depiction of Britannia is inspired by her maritime origins. The design features Britannia riding a chariot through the waves, drawn by mighty sea creatures, to symbolise her protecting the nation and its shores. This year’s design is more reminiscent of historic seals and medals, particularly those from the eighteenth-century iconic designs.
The design includes many of the familiar symbols that are associated with Britannia. In this year’s design, Britannia can be seen wearing a Corinthian helmet, as well as carrying a trident and a shield decorated with the Union Flag. On closer inspection, a face of a lion can also be seen at the front of the chariot, with the chariot being pulled through the waves by horses that bear the characteristics of aquatic creatures like seahorses, with scales on their bodies and fins in place of manes and hooves.
Jonathan Olliffe, designer of the 2023 Britannia coin design said, “It was my aim to create something authentic and truly original, whilst maintaining a classic style. Philip Nathan’s 1997 Britannia coin design depicts a horse and chariot. I liked the concept of featuring a chariot within the design but in a less predictable way, and I mixed the horse form with a seahorse, and it worked! The serpent fin or tail at the back added an element of the mystical to it. I looked at classical paintings and the anatomy of horses, and sea life imagery.
“These mystical aquatic creatures with suggestions of horse-like anatomy feature heavily in the foreground of the design and maintain a strong and empowering presence as they rise from the ocean waves, adding a sense of depth and structure to the design.”
Rebecca Morgan, Director of Collector Services, said, “Britannia has a long and enduring history on UK coins and is instantly recognisable among collectors across the world. From her first appearance on Roman coins through to featuring on every coin bearing a British Monarch since the reign of Charles II. The 2023 commemorative Britannia coin celebrates a true icon who’s evolved through the ages on coins produced by The Royal Mint, with this year’s design highlighting her maritime origins and connection.
“We anticipate the 2023 Britannia commemorative coin to be extremely popular among collectors, with it being the first edition in the range to bear His Majesty King Charles III’s official portrait.”
The figure of Britannia first appeared on Roman coins but disappeared with the end of the Roman Empire. Britannia re-emerged in the Elizabethan era, but only returned to coins in 1672 during the reign of Charles II. From that time to the present day, she has featured on the coins of every British monarch.
Prices in US dollars
These are the mints official prices. We don’t convert here generally, as the rates change constantly, and there are too many currencies. Seems pointless, as we don’t sell anything anyway.