The Royal Mint is marking the 200th anniversary of the modern gold Sovereign with the 2017 Sovereign Collection. One of the coins in this collection is the 2017 Gold Bullion Sovereign Coin, The Royal Mint’s 22 carat gold flagship coin. For two centuries The Sovereign has been a constant of British coinage, admired and trusted through times of change.
The Sovereign famously features a portrayal of the story of St. George and the Dragon, which was created by Benedetto Pistrucci. It first appeared in 1817 on the British gold Sovereign and some pattern Crowns. The 2017 bullion edition features a new shield mint mark that signifies the 200-year anniversary. The observe features the fifth official portrait of Queen Elizabeth II as created by Jody Clark.
The reverse of the 2017 Sovereign features Pistrucci’s St. George and the Dragon design.
St. George was a Christian military officer under the Roman emperor Diocletian (ruled 284-305 CE). In medieval legend, St. George was riding by a lake in Libya that was being poisoned by a dragon. The nearby town was forced to feed the dragon with sheep; when they ran out of sheep the town’s children were supplied according to the drawing of lots. On the day St. George rode by, the king’s daughter had been selected. He first attacked with his lance, which wounded the dragon. He then took the princess’ girdle and leashed it to the dragon. The two of them led the dragon back to town, whereby George offered to kill it if the townspeople converted to Christianity. They did and thus the beast was slain.
From left to right: The classically chiseled St. George, clad in only a crested helmet, a Roman soldier’s cloak and a Roman soldier’s leather boots, deftly controls the steed he rides by pulling back the reins of its bridle as the horse rears up to trample the dragon, which is rendered in a Western European style. St. George brandishes a short sword (a Roman gladius) in his right hand. His left foot is barely visible under the horse. The point of a spear is broken off in the dragon’s side; the shaft lays on the ground behind the horse. Beneath this tableau is the date, 2017. To the left of the date is the shield mint mark of The Royal Mint; above and to the right of the date are the designers initials, “B . P .”
Royal Mint engraver Jody Clark’s portrait of Her Majesty the Queen is the predominant motif on the obverse of the coin. She is wearing the royal crown and, notably, she is smiling. His initials “J.C” are found beneath the truncation of her neck. The inscription ELIZABETH II * DEI * GRA * REGINA * FID * DEF * (“Elizabeth II, Dei Gra[tia] Regina, Fid[ei] Def[ensor]”, or “Elizabeth II, Queen by the Grace of God, Defender of the Faith”), which begins at the 12 ‘clock position, circles clockwise around the effigy. A ring of small, sharp dentils surrounds the entire design.
The edge of the 2017 gold bullion Sovereign coin is milled or reeded.
Designer(s): Designer Jody Clark’s fifth portrait of Queen Elizabeth II is the current standard for all coinage of the United Kingdom. (View Designer’s Profile). Born in Italy, Benedetto Pistrucci (1783-1855) was a world-class engraver of cameos and gems. His fame on the continent earned him a position at The Royal Mint designing medals and coins.
|Year Of Issue:||2017|
|Alloy:||22 carat gold|
|OBV Designer||Jody Clark|
|REV Designer||Benedetto Pistrucci|
The 2017 UK Gold Sovereign is available from APMEX
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