2021 Proof Full Gold Sovereign featuring unique '95' Crown Privy Mark
The 2021 Gold Sovereign Proof coin has a mirror-like finish. If you're a serious collector, we recommend you buy the proof version of the 2021 Gold Sovereign to best appreciate the beauty of the images on the coin and the skill of the engravers.
The Obverse (front, heads) has Queen Elizabeth II's 5th portrait by Jody Clark. Her Majesty used the Royal Diamond crown which she wore for her coronation and this design has been used on gold sovereigns since 2015. Jody Clark was the first Royal Mint employee for over 100 years to design a coinage portrait of a Monarch. Clark was also the youngest (at 33) to do so.
The Reverse (back, tails) of the 2021 Gold Sovereign Proof is similar to that of the original 1817 portrayal of St George slaying the Dragon, designed by Benedetto Pistrucci and digitally remastered for today's coinage. St. George, the Patron Saint of England, is on horseback, a broken spear in hand. On the floor to the left is a remnant of the spear that broke in a previous offensive.
Benedetto Pistrucci (1783-1855) was an Italian engraver who became chief medallist at the Royal Mint. Some 200 years ago, Pistrucci both designed and engraved the famous St George and the Dragon artwork himself and was paid 100 guineas for his services, equivalent to about £8,000 today.
Bullion vs Brilliant Uncirculated vs Proof
Modern gold Sovereigns are struck to three different grades / finishes. The technical specification of each coin remains the same (weight, diameter, gold content), but the quality of finish differs substantially.
2021 bullion Sovereigns are purely for gold investment. They may have the same image as the proof, but the coin is made by machine, and only struck once using production dies. The coin is not so visually appealing as a proof and may have scuffs and scratches from the production process. But if you're just looking for gold, then this is the cheapest way to buy. Bullion coins will be priced closely to the spot price of gold and have the lowest markup.
The 2021 Gold Sovereign Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) is a half-way house. The process to create a BU coin is part-machine, part-hand made. The coin is struck twice to get a better image impression. The coin is inspected and cleaned by hand. The result is a coin that is considerably nicer than the bullion version but less expensive than the proof version.
Proof coins have a mirror-like finish and are almost hand made, with appreciable care. When the coin itself is 'struck' (i.e. when the images are pressed into the metal), it is done so multiple times (up to six) to ensure the image definition and detail are outstanding. On average, it takes about five times longer to produce a proof sovereign as it does to produce a bullion sovereign.
The result is that the 2021 Gold Sovereign Proof is just about perfect, and is ideal for coin collectors.
This extra care incurs considerable manufacturing overhead and a proof 2021 Gold Sovereign will therefore cost more than the gold content of the coin; but it will also attract a high re-sale price if you do decide to sell it. And there are strong markets for these coins.
Proof and BU 2021 Gold Sovereigns usually have a maximum limit set on the mintage. This can affect the future value of your sovereign as it increases the scarcity of the coin. Once the Royal Mint has sold out, the coin can only be obtained from the free market, where rarity usually has a premium price.