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Gold Sovereigns

1918 Bombay Mint Gold Sovereign

22 Carat Gold

King George V saw his role as monarch as being to embody those qualities his far-flung subjects saw as their greatest strengths - diligence, dignity & duty. King George V was the only monarch whose effigy appeared on sovereigns from all seven mints. George reigned during the height of the Royal Mint's reach, but the tumultuous events of World War I, the collapse of the international monetary system and the demise of the gold standard meant that he would be the last King to grace the sovereign


The King George V "Large Head" obverse appeared on British sovereigns during an era of change and turmoil. The Bombay Mint, dating from 1672, is one of the oldest mints in Asia and produced coins for the East India Company and later administrations down to the present day. A gold refinery was established in 1918, expressly for the purpose of refining the South African gold. During 1919 and 1920 almost two million tolas of gold was refined. In addition to imports from the Rand mines, a vast quantity of gold was brought to the mint as a result of a wartime measure known as the Gold Import Act. A suitable structure, designated as a branch of the Royal Mint in London, was erected in the Bombay Mint compound, but completely isolated from the mint, for the specific purpose of converting South African and recycled Indian gold into sovereigns. These were of the standard British Pattern, with George V on the obverse and the St George and Dragon reverse, but the letter I (India) was inserted in the exergue line above the date. Some 1,296,033 sovereigns were struck before the branch operation close in April 1919 for economic reasons. All of these sovereigns bore the date 1918.
There is much variation in the depth to which this portrait is struck. The points to examine when grading this obverse are:
  • The peaks of the eyebrow and upper cheek;
  • The fine detail in his moustache;
  • The broad area of hair above the ear & towards the fringe;
  • The neck muscle between his ear and the base of his neck.
  • As always, the rims and fields;



Composition: 91.67% Gold
8.33% Copper
Gold Content: 0.2354 oz
Edge: Reeded
Weight: 7.9881 grams
Size: 21.5 mm
Reverse: Benedetto Pistrucci
Obverse: Edgar Bertram Mackennal
Chard Gold Sovereigns Andrew Crellin of Sterling & Currency.

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17 Windmill Drive
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25A St Neots Rd
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