World News

Rare 22-carat gold Henry VIII coin sells for £64,000

Rare 22-carat gold Henry VIII coin issued by Tower of London between 1538 and 1541 which was the ‘origin of the pound’ sells for £64,000 at auction

  • The Sovereign gold coin is one of only five known examples on the market  
  • Minted around the time that Henry made himself head of new Church of England
  • Front of the coin shows the King on the throne holding a sword and sceptre
  • On the reverse, a royal shield atop a Tudor rose is clearly visible

An extremely rare 22-carat gold coin dating from the reign of Henry VIII has sold for £64,000.

The Sovereign gold coin, one of only five known examples, was issued from the Tower of London between 1538 and 1541 and is considered to be the origin of the pound.

At the time, Henry, who had six wives over the course of his life, was exerting his authority having just made himself head of the new Church of England after splitting from the Catholic Church in Rome.

The front of the coin shows the King on the throne holding a sword and sceptre, with a royal shield atop a Tudor rose on the reverse.

An extremely rare Henry VIII coin which was the ‘origin of the pound’ has sold for £64,000

The 22-carat gold coin, which was the largest gold coin in Tudor England, had been in several prominent private collections since the start of the 20th century.

It sparked a bidding war with auctioneers Spink & Son, of London, achieving a hammer price of £52,000. Extra fees took the final figure to £64,480.

Gregory Edmund, coin specialist at Spink & Son, said: ‘The Henry VIII Sovereign gold coin was issued from the Tower of London between 1538 and 1541.

‘This was at the time that Henry VIII was making himself head of the new Church of England, confiscating monasteries and celebrating the birth of his wanted son Edward VI.

The Sovereign gold coin, one of only five known examples, was issued from the Tower of London between 1538 and 1541. At the time, Henry, who had six wives over the course of his life, was exerting his authority having just made himself head of the new Church of England after splitting from the Catholic Church in Rome

The front of the coin shows the King on the throne holding a sword and sceptre, with a royal shield atop a Tudor rose on the reverse

‘I can trace only five examples of this particular type of coin in commerce, and this example has a provenance through several notable collections as far back as 1927.

‘It is the biggest gold coin in Tudor England and the first English coin to depict a monarch in full regalia seated upon a throne – in effect demonstrating to high society and visiting merchants that the Tudors are well and truly in power.

‘The coin itself is the origin of our modern pound coin, although its present shape wasn’t hit upon until the later 19th century.’

The Sovereign coin was the 20 shilling coin of its day, which was converted into the modern pound coin in 1971 with decimalisation. 

Source: Read Full Article