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British Gold Sovereign

Weight: Spot Price: Buy Price:
0.24 oz £ 309.08 £ 326.86
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British Gold Sovereign

Weight: 0.23540
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Buy Gold Sovereigns - By Post or Storage

Covid 19 Note: We have availability of British Sovereigns. Delivery to vaults from mints and suppliers is taking from 2 to 6 weeks. You can lock in your order today, online or over the phone.

What Are Gold Sovereigns?

The Gold Sovereign is a British gold coin which is perhaps the most recognised gold coin in the world.

GoldCore recommends Gold Sovereigns to our UK clients as one of the most tax efficient ways to invest in gold and own gold due to them being capital gains tax (CGT) free.

It contains nearly one-quarter of an ounce of gold – 0.2354 oz.  The British Gold Sovereigns have been produced in their modern form since 1817. The coins were widely circulated as currency during the British Empire in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries throughout the world.

What Are the Gold Sovereign Benefits?

  • Gold Sovereigns contain 0.2354 troy ounce (nearly ¼ oz) of gold
  • Capital gains tax (CGT) free and VAT free in the UK
  • Legal tender coin backed by the UK Treasury
  • Minted since 1817 - known and trusted internationally
  • British Royal Mint is one of leading mints in the world
  • Competitive pricing and slightly higher premiums due to smaller size
  • Portable, very divisible, internationally liquid form of financial insurance

How to Buy Gold Sovereigns?

Buying Gold Sovereigns is an easy and simple process. You can buy them online for Delivery or Secure Storage using the BUY button or you can call our office to place your order over the phone.

We sell Gold Sovereigns and all major bullion bar and coin products and you can pay by bank wire, credit card or debit card.

We make a market in Sovereigns and offer fully insured delivery to our British clients throughout England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland from our depository partner vaults in London and Zurich.

Insured delivery of Gold Sovereigns to homes or offices is also popular and many clients do both - take delivery of some Gold Sovereigns and own the rest in Secure Storage. Sovereigns are especially popular for delivery due to their smaller size and divisibility and the belief that the smaller size coin may be useful in the event of a severe financial crisis, currency crisis or economic collapse.

Many of our UK clients opt to store their Sovereigns in fully insured, offshore Secure Storage jurisdictions. We specialise in offering our UK clients access to allocated and segregated bullion storage in secure non-bank vault partners in safer jurisdictions in the world such as Zurich, Hong Kong and Singapore.

How Much Gold is in a British Gold Sovereign?

The Sovereign is made of 22-carat gold, consisting of 11/12 gold and 1/12 copper, giving a gold content of 0.9167. The coin has a standard weight of 7.98805 grams and given that the fineness is 0.9167, the gold content is 7.323 grams, or 0.2354 (troy) ounces.

What Do British Gold Sovereigns Look Like?

The British Gold Sovereign, know as a "Sovereign", has a diameter is 22.05mm. The sovereign is a legal tender coin with a face value of one pound sterling, however, the face value is not specified on the coin.

The current design of the sovereign features a portrait of Elizabeth II on the obverse (front) with the words “ELIZABETH II” and “DEI GRA REGINA FED DEF”, which is a latin abbreviation for “Dei Gratia Regina Fidei Defensor” the Latin for “By the Grace of God, Queen, Defender of the Faith”. The Elizabeth II portrait is based on a design by sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley and appears on all sovereigns minted since 1998.

The reverse of the coin features a classic design of St George slaying a dragon. This famous design was created by Benedetto Pistrucci, the Italian engraver, and was first used on the first modern sovereigns in 1817. On each coin, the year of issue is specified underneath the St George illustration.

Live Prices

Order Value Price Premium
£ 1,000 - £ 22,999 £ 326.85 5.75%
£ 23,000 - £ 57,999 £ 324.01 4.83%
£ 58,000 - £ 219,999 £ 323.16 4.55%
£ 220,000 + £ 322.41 4.31%

What is the History of the British Gold Sovereign Coin?

The Gold Sovereign is manufactured at Britain’s Royal Mint. The Royal Mint is in Llantrisant, South Wales, and the facility was opened by Queen Elizabeth II in 1968.

The Royal Mint manufacturers coins and medals for approximately 60 countries each year and is the world’s leading export mint.

The Royal Mint was originally established in 1279 and resided in the Tower of London. The mint moved to larger facilities on nearby Tower Hill in London in 1811, before its second move to Wales in 1968.

During the 1800s and early 1900s, The Royal Mint began to open branch mints in various locations within the British Empire where major gold fields were discovered. These branch mints all manufactured gold sovereigns at various times.

Remarkably, the modern sovereign has a nearly 200-year history but it’s still produced each year by the Royal Mint in Wales in both bullion and proof form.

The size and weight of all sovereigns are standard, but there is a large variety of coin designs on the market. This is because of the coin’s long history – the coin design has changed with each monarch, sometimes more than once.

A gold coin called a sovereign was first produced in England in 1489 under King Henry VII, bearing the King’s effigy, hence the name sovereigns. Sovereign production continued under subsequent monarchs until 1604.

A widely used term ‘modern gold sovereign’ covers sovereigns produced since 1817. These coins were launched as part of the Great Recoinage of 1816.

For ease of identification, sovereigns are commonly referred to by the name of the monarch that they depict. The first modern sovereign in 1817, introduced in the reign of King George III, featured the effigy of the King on the obverse and Benedetto Pisttucci’s design of St George and the Dragon on the reverse. Pistrucci’s design was so well liked that it has been retained on many subsequent sovereign designs over the years, including very recent designs.

The sequence of monarchs featured on the gold sovereign coin from 1817 to 1901 is as follows: 1817 – 1820 George III, 1821 – 1830 George IV, 1831 – 1837 William IV, and 1838 – 1901 Victoria.

Given that Victoria reigned for so long, there were a number of design changes to the Victoria portrait on sovereigns over that period. Sovereigns in the period 1838 to 1887 depict her first portrait and are referred to as Victoria young head coins. From 1887 to 1893, a second portrait was introduced and the coins are known as Victoria Jubilee head, celebrating the Golden Jubilee. Sovereigns from 1893 to 1901 have a third portrait and are known as Victoria old head.

After Victoria, the sequence of sovereigns is 1902 – 1910 Edward VII, 1911 – 1932 George V. Then sovereign production essentially stopped until 1957 when the first Elizabeth II sovereigns were minted.

As the British Empire expanded under Queen Victoria during the 1800s, the Sovereign became the world’s most widely distributed gold coin. Although originally minted in London, The British Gold Sovereign came to be minted all over the world as Australia and South Africa became large gold producers. Mints in Pretoria, Bombay, Ottawa, Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney turned out hundreds of millions of Sovereigns during the late 1800s and early 1900s.

The design of Saint George slaying the dragon is common to the reverse of all variations of the coin.

Should You Buy Sovereigns as an Investment?

Buying Gold Sovereigns is a low-cost way of diversifying an investment portfolio or bullion holding with the vital insurance of physical gold ownership.

Sovereigns contain exactly 0.2354 troy ounces of gold (nearly ¼ of an ounce) and so is easy for UK investors to value using the international real-time spot gold price. 

Gold Sovereigns are liquid with most major dealers including GoldCore making a market in them. They are portable and easy to store due to their smaller size, and the quarter ounce divisibility allows sellers to sell a portion of their Gold Sovereign holdings.This is not the case when one owns a very large bar.

Whether you decide to take possession of your precious metals or have them stored safely on your behalf with a secure third party, Gold Sovereigns are an excellent bullion coin to own.

Gold Sovereigns typically command premiums of between 5% and 7% with GoldCore who offer some of the most competitive premiums for both deliveries in the UK and for secure international storage.