William Wordsworth, the beloved poet, is remembered by the Royal Mint on a new coin trio

Along with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, William Wordsworth is credited with helping launch the Romantic Age in English literature, when the pair collaborated on a book called Lyrical Ballads, in 1798, Coleridge contributed four works to the book, including his legendary The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, making up about a third of its length, with the bulk being works by Wordsworth.

It’s one of Wordsworth’s most famous works to which the Royal Mint has turned for inspiration and the last to be put into Lyrical Ballads before publication. Called ‘Lines Written a few miles above Tintern Abbey’, it was a poetic recollection of a trip along the banks of the River Wye with his sister. A line from the work is inscribed on the face of the coin, and it’s overlaid on a depiction of the scenery from which he drew inspiration. It’s a nice piece, suitably evoking the feelings that Wordsworth was experiencing when he wrote it. Marking 250 years since his birth, it also ironically marks 170 years since his death.

These are standard £5 coins from the mint, with a single 22ct red gold piece of 39.94 grams, a sterling silver coin of 28.28 grams, and a much cheaper base metal issue for those that just want the design. The precious metal variants are packaged in the mints standard boxes, which are of a good quality, but the base metal one is mounted to a blistercard packed with backstory. To be honest, the Royal Mint does its base metal range really well. All are available now.


The Royal Mint is celebrating 250 years since the birth of William Wordsworth with a commemorative coin. Recognised as one of the most popular poets to have written in the English language, the poem ‘I Wondered Lonely as a Cloud’ is Wordsworth’s most admired work, commonly known as ‘Daffodils’ and is inspired by a walk he once took with his sister.

Born 7th April 1770, Wordsworth grew up near the Lake District in England. It was this beautiful landscape that provided him with constant inspiration when writing poetry. Growing up in the Lake District, Wordworth’s inspiration for his poetry came from the beautiful scenery that he saw every day.

Credited with beginning the English Romantic period in literature, Wordsworth’s collaboration with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Lyrical Ballads, published in 1798, is considered a stylistically ground breaking collection of poems. Whilst Wordsworth’s romantic epic, The Prelude, is considered one of the greatest works in English literature.

Acclaimed artist David Lawrence is the designer of the William Wordsworth commemorative coin. David has featured lines taken from Wordsworth’s celebrated poem, ‘Lines Written a few miles above Tintern Abbey’, weaving them into a design showcasing the magnificent scenery that inspired him.

Clare Maclennan, Divisional Director of the Commemorative Coin division at The Royal Mint and The Royal Mint Experience said, “Not only is William Wordsworth one of Britain’s most loved poets but his contribution to English literature has been a significant one. We are delighted to celebrate William Wordsworth’s 250th birthday on a UK commemorative coin to celebrate his life and poetry.”

Michael McGregor, Director of Wordsworth Grasmere said, “We are excited to mark the 250th birthday of William Wordsworth this year. Our own celebrations will see the authentic restoration of his Lake District home and a yearlong calendar of activities to encourage a greater appreciation of his work than ever before. The Royal Mint’s commemorative coin will also contribute to this aim, highlighting Wordsworth’s work to a nationwide audience in this special year.”

DENOMINATION £5.00 UKP £5.00 UKP £5.00 UKP
COMPOSITION 0.9167 gold 0.925 silver Cupro-nickel
WEIGHT 39.94 grams 28.28 grams 28.28 grams
DIMENSIONS 38.61 mm 38.61 mm 38.61 mm
FINISH Proof Proof B/unc
MINTAGE 300 3,000 Unlimited
R.R.P. £2,295.00 £82.50 £13.00