1908 Gold Sovereign Canada – Proof


The 1908 Gold Sovereign - Canada

This is a rare satin finish proof Edward VII Gold Sovereign minted at the Ottawa Branch of the Royal Mint in Canada. Only 633 minted. The mintmark is a small 'C' just above the date on the Reverse. SCBC 3970.

The 1908 Sovereign depicts Benedetto Pistrucci’s famous portrayal of St George slaying the dragon on the reverse of the coin. Minmark 'C' above date.

King Edward VII’s bare head portrait, by George W. de Saulles, can be seen on the obverse of the coin.

Image credit: Museums Victoria


Mintage: 633 (may include coins in sets)
Minted at The Canadian Mint.
Remember 1908 ?
Monarch is Edward VII. Henry Campbell-Bannerman (Liberal) is replaced as Prime Minister by H. H. Asquith (Liberal). Theodore Roosevelt is US President. Manchester United secure the Football League First Division title The first major trophy. 1908 Summer Olympics held at the White City Stadium, London. American-born Samuel F. Cody makes the first powered fixed-wing aircraft flight in Britain. Kenneth Grahame publishes The Wind in the Willows. First issue of The Magnet, featuring a story of Greyfriars School by Frank Richards.
Edward VII (1901-1910)
Edward VII was King of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions and Emperor of India from 22 January 1901 until his death in 1910. Edward was the eldest son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. Edward married Princess Alexandra of Denmark in 1863.

Five Pound, Two Pound and Crowns were only released in 1902. The 1902 Proof set for the Coronation is unusual in that it had a Matt finish. Gold Sovereign mintages were high during the reign of Edward VII, averaging more than 10 million per year which makes them fairly common even today.
General Description: Sovereigns
The 1908 Gold Sovereign Canada - Proof is an example of the Gold Sovereign and is one of the most ubiquitous of all coins and much sought after by both coin collectors and bullion investors. Sovereigns have been minted since 1817 (in Britain 1817-1917, 1925 and 1957 on). At coins fairs you often hear the dealers refer to these coins as Sovs.

Besides being minted in Britain, Sovereigns have been made in Australia (Melbourne, Sydney, Perth), India (then Bombay, now Mumbai), Canada (Ottowa) and South Africa (Pretoria) although these regional mints have not made sovereigns since 1932. The non-British coins carry a small mintmark ('S','M','P','I','C' or 'SA') just above the date. This 1908 Gold Sovereign Canada - Proof was minted at The Canadian Mint.

The Obverse is the Monarch's head (Edward VII) and the Reverse is most often St George and the Dragon, although other backs have been used and are of interest to collectors. The Reverse often gives the Sovs a new term, like "ShieldBacks".

Specifications for the Gold Sovereign
 
  • Weight: 7.9881g
  • Diameter: 22.05 mm
  • Thickness: 1.52 mm
  • Purity: 22 carat = 91.67% (11/12ths gold, 1/12th copper. Adding copper makes the coin more scratch and dent resistant)
  • Gold Content: 113 grains = 7.3224 g = 0.2354 troy ounce
  • Face value: £1 = 20 shillings
  • Monarch: Edward VII

History

Up until 1604 there was a coin called the English gold sovereign and in 1816 when there was the "Great Recoinage" the name was revived. At that time standard gold (22 carat) was valued at £46 14s 6d per troy pound; this meant a £1 coin needed to weigh 123.2744783 grains or 7.988030269 g. The weight is still the same today.

As a historical note: to maintain the Gold Standard, in 1816 the value of silver was set at 66 shillings for one troy pound and silver coins were only legal for denominations up to £2.

The first sovereigns carried the head of King George III and the famous George and the Dragon design by Benedetto Pistrucci (29 May 1783 – 16 September 1855), an Italian engraver who became chief medallist at the Royal Mint.

With high value coins such as the 1908 Gold Sovereign Canada - Proof, collectors and bullion investors often worry about forgeries but actually gold coins are very difficult to forge due to gold's unique properties of density and colour. Gold is extremely dense and to use another metal and gold-plate it would result in a coin that is under-weight, over-diameter or half as thick, something that would be spotted very easily. More difficult to spot would be a bullion coin melted down and re-cast as a highly collectable date, but an expert can usually tell these too. You should always use reputable dealers.

Which Mint: The Canadian Mint
The Royal Canadian Mint is a Crown corporation of Canada. It was established in 1908 at the time of the Yukon gold rush as the Ottawa Branch of the (British) Royal Mint.

The Royal Canadian Mint is renowned for its innovation in minting coins.
Country of Origin: Canada
Canada is a North American country stretching from the U.S. in the south to the Arctic Circle in the north. It is part of the British Commonwealth although it has been virtually independent of Britain since 1931. Canada is home to about 35 million people, with the official languages of both English and French. The currency is the Canadian Dollar (CAD $) which is equivalent to 100 cents. Canadian coins carry the head of the British Monarch and are often associated with the Canadian symbol of the Maple Leaf. The Canadian Silver Dollar is refererred to as a Silver Maple and is one of the puriest silver coins minted at 0.9999 silver.
If you don't see a coin in the list below try the Sovereigns page on eBay UK

List of items on:

UK On eBay UK:
22ct Gold Half Sovereign X3 Edward 1907,1908,1909
22ct Gold Half Sovereign X3 Edward 1907,1908,1909
£ 570.00
1908 Gold Half Sovereign - Edward VII - A nice half sov for under £200, 3.96 g.
1908 Gold Half Sovereign - Edward VII - A nice half sov for under £200, 3.96 g.
£ 199.00
1908  EDWARD VII GOLD SOVEREIGN MELBOURNE MINT WITH 9 CARAT LOOSE MOUNT
1908 EDWARD VII GOLD SOVEREIGN MELBOURNE MINT WITH 9 CARAT LOOSE MOUNT
£ 450.00
1908 King Edward VII Gold Sovereign Coin Garret Nokta Minelab Equinox Detecting
1908 King Edward VII Gold Sovereign Coin Garret Nokta Minelab Equinox Detecting
£ 10.13
1908 EDWARD VII GOLD HALF SOVEREIGN COIN IN NEAR EXTREMELY FINE CONDITION.
1908 EDWARD VII GOLD HALF SOVEREIGN COIN IN NEAR EXTREMELY FINE CONDITION.
£ 265.00
1908 Gold Sovereign - King Edward VII - P
1908 Gold Sovereign - King Edward VII - P
£ 465.24
MS62 1908 Great Britain 1 Sovereign Gold Coin NGC *1602
MS62 1908 Great Britain 1 Sovereign Gold Coin NGC *1602
£ 528.07
1908 AUSTRALIA UK KING EDWARD VII Saint George Gold Sovereign Coin PCGS i90690
1908 AUSTRALIA UK KING EDWARD VII Saint George Gold Sovereign Coin PCGS i90690
£ 1,876.97

List of items on: