Gold Sovereign 1931 « GEORGIVS V D.G. BRITT» .

MintMint markTotal Mintage
Pretoria MintLetters SA8,511,792 (8.5 million)
Perth MintLetter P1,173,568 (1.2 million)
Melbourne MintLetter M57,779
https://onlinecoin.club/Coins/Country/United_Kingdom/Sovereign_1931/

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.

1931 Melbourne Mint Gold Sovereign. Mintage
57,779

The King George V “Small Head” obverse has 2 rows of beading around the rim and was seen rather late in the life of the sovereign. It was issued only 1929 to 1931, the last 3 years which Australia was on the gold standard. It was introduced in an attempt to improve the level of detail seen both in the obverse & reverse designs and prevent ‘ghosting ‘ of the reverse design. One of the technical considerations for an artist designing a coin is that when the coin is struck, the metal should flow evenly throughout both designs. If the design is higher on one side than the other, then not all of the opposing design will be clear. This was thought to be the case with the George V Large Head portrait, hence the change.

  • 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.
  • Weakness will show in a lack of definition of the hair including beard and moustache;
  • The top of the ear which would show a lack of sharpness on a weak strike;
  • As always, the rims and fields;

There are slight alterations to the St George reverse with changes to the folds in the cape, his sword and the broken lance on the ground.
Due to the smaller portrait, there is a larger portion of the fields exposed on the Small Head than on the Large Head. This coin is more prone to having bag marks in the fields as a result. All of the same high points as on the Large Head portrait should be examined.

1931 Perth Mint Gold Sovereign. Mintage
1,173,567.

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 “Small Head” obverse has 2 rows of beading around the rim and was seen rather late in the life of the sovereign. It was issued only 1929 to 1931, the last 3 years which Australia was on the gold standard. It was introduced in an attempt to improve the level of detail seen both in the obverse & reverse designs and prevent ‘ghosting ‘ of the reverse design. One of the technical considerations for an artist designing a coin is that when the coin is struck, the metal should flow evenly throughout both designs. If the design is higher on one side than the other, then not all of the opposing design will be clear. This was thought to be the case with the George V Large Head portrait, hence the change.

Due to the smaller portrait, there is a larger portion of the fields exposed on the Small Head than on the Large Head. This coin is more prone to having bag marks in the fields as a result. All of the same high points as on the Large Head portrait should be examined.
There are slight alterations to the St George reverse with changes to the folds in the cape, his sword and the broken lance on the ground.
When collectors examine a sovereign with the St George reverse, there are a certain number of points which are examined closely for strike & wear. From top to bottom, they are:

  • The crest of St George’s helmet;
  • St George’s chest, together with the strap & pin fastening his cloak;
  • The bridle as it crosses the horse’s neck;
  • The muscle separation in St George’s upper thigh;
  • The horse’s forequarters & rump;
  • The “bloodline” in the sword;
  • The upper band across St George’s boot;
  • The dragon’s torso below it’s neck.

By Alexandre Laurent

Alexandre Laurentl is working in the jewelry and investment gold since 2002. Alexandre graduated from The Normandy School of Business and from the University of Perpignan a Bachelor of economics in 1995.

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