1908 Gold Sovereign London


The 1908 Gold Sovereign. London Mint.

The 1908 London Sovereign depicts Benedetto Pistrucci’s famous portrayal of St George slaying the dragon on the reverse of the coin. No letter above the date indicates the sovereign was produced in London.

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

11,729,006 sovereigns were struck at the London Mint in 1908.


Mintage: 11,729,006 (may include coins in sets)
Minted at The Royal 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 London 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 London was minted at The Royal 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 London, 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 Royal Mint
The Royal Mint is the designated place for the UK to mint coins. It dates back well over 1000 years and is a Government-owned company. 

Formed in the reign of Alfred the Great about the year 886, during the period 1279-1812 it was generally referred to as The Tower Mint as it was housed at the Tower of London. The Master of The Royal Mint has included famous figures such as Sir Isaac Newton.

Since 2010 it has operated as Royal Mint Ltd, a company owned by HM Treasury, under an exclusive contract to supply all coinage for the UK although it also produces medals and coins for other countries. It is currently located at Llantrisant, Wales.

There is also an on-line shop at The Royal Mint Shop.
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
The United Kingdom (UK) is the Union of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It is often refered to as Great Britain (GBR). It has a long, rich history.

The orignal coinage was Pounds, Shillings and Pence but since decimalisation on 15 February 1971, it is £1 = 100p, that is One Pound = 100 pence. The coinage of the UK is also a long history, the Royal Mint being established as long ago as 886AD when coins were hammered. Today there is perhaps 30 billion coins in circulation, and many (numismatic) collectors coins and sets are issued frequently in gold, silver and other metals.
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 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
Australia 1908 S 1/2 Half Sovereign Sov Gold Coin XF King Edward VII Sydney Mint
Australia 1908 S 1/2 Half Sovereign Sov Gold Coin XF King Edward VII Sydney Mint
£ 244.09
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: