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1847 Queen Victoria Gothic Crown PF 60 Unidecimo

1847 Queen Victoria Gothic Crown PF 60 Unidecimo Obverse

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A pleasing and collectible example of this sought-after issue. This 1847 Queen Victoria Crown gets its name from the Gothic Revivial details of the design. These include blackletter-style legends, Victoria’s medieval-style hairstyle, garb and crown. The obverse is the work of the renown William Wyon, then at the height of his career with the Royal Mint. The reverse features crowned cruciform shields of arms with national flower emblems in the angles. This was engraved by Wyon but designed by William Dyce. This Gothic Crown bears the regnal year ‘unidecimo’ in raised lettering to the edge. The coin has been graded by NGC as PF 60 and represents a well-preserved example of this popular coin.
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An attractive Gothic Crown with the regnal year 'unidecimo' to the edge, graded PF 60 by NGC.

Wyon's Gothic Masterpiece

Among the most beautiful coins ever minted, Gothic Crowns are scarce and stunning. They feature a remarkable crowned portrait of Queen Victoria, garbed in the trappings of an art movement that was all the rage in the 1840s. Known as Medieval Revival or Victorian Gothic, it's proponents - including the engraver of this coin, William Wyon - looked to Britain’s past for inspiration.

The reverse of the 1847 Crown also evokes the Middle Ages. It bears a highly-detailed design composed of four crowned shields and a bloom of national flower emblems, encircled by a blackletter-style legend, redolent of medieval manuscripts. Wyon – then Chief Engraver to the Royal Mint – carved the dies for the reverse but the design is the work of Scottish artist, William Dyce.

It’s a captivating piece, entirely distinct in style from UK coinage issued before and after.

Rare and Sought After

However, it's not just the beauty of the Gothic Crown that has made it famous among collectors.

Only around 8,000 were ever struck and a range of variations contributed to immediate interest from collectors. Extant examples appear in silver and gold, most commonly with raised gothic lettering to the edge with the regnal year 'unidecimo' though rare plain and 'septimo' edge 1847 Crowns are known.

The appeal of the coin continues today, resulting in a brisk collector’s market. New fans have the chance to own reissues. An Alderney version is available now and a version from The Royal Mint will be on offer soon. You can read more about this forthcoming addition to the Mint's Great Engravers series on our blog which also dives deeper into the history of the 1847 Crown.

Graded PF 60 by NGC

The Gothic Crown only circulated in a limited manner so many examples are in excellent condition. This one is no exception.

The coin shows a fairly dark but even tone - deeper around the legends - with a difficult to capture iridescence to the reverse. It has been graded PF 60 by the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation which describes a proof coin with an average strike and no evidence of wear. Abrasions may be apparent but here they are in evidence primarily on the edges, minimally effecting the coin’s design.

NGC Cert: 6029545-003.


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