1887 marked the 50th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s accession to the throne. The aging Queen was now a 68-year-old widow who had been depicted as a young teenager on sovereigns since 1838 and thus it was decided that a new portrait should be introduced.
The obverse depicts the bust of Queen Victoria facing left wearing a small crown, veiled with the ribbon and star of the Order of the Garter and the Victoria and Albert Order, the letters J.E.B. at the bottom of the bust the reverse depicts St George mounted with a streamer flowing from his helmet, slaying the dragon with a sword. The date appears below the exergue line with the initials B.P. to the right, the mintmark (if applicable) appears in the centre of the exergue line directly above the date
|Gold Sovereign 1887 Proof||797||Extremely Rare|
|Gold Sovereign 1887||1,111,280||1,002,000||940,000|
|Gold Sovereign 1888||2,777,424||2,187,000||2,830,612|
|Gold Sovereign 1889||7,267,455||3,262,000||2,732,590|
|Gold Sovereign 1890||6,529,887||2,808,000||2,473,537|
|Gold Sovereign 1891||6,329,476||2,596,000||2,749,592|
|Gold Sovereign 1892||7,104,720||2,837,000||3,488,750|
|Gold Sovereign 1893||1,498,000||1,649,352|
Crafted by Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm, the portrait showed a Queen scowling with disapproval. Perhaps she was just concentrating as she appeared to be balancing the crown on her head. This portrait drew much criticism, and only used the St George reverse, which incidentally, had a ribbon introduced to St Georges head. The Jubilee issue lasted until continued until 1893, when the encroachment of time again made it necessary to alter the portrait of the aging Queen. When Queen Victoria died of old age in 1901, an entire era died with her. During the sixty-four years of her reign, the social, cultural and economic landscape of the Australian colonies had transformed entirely, and our nation quite literally came of age just prior to Victoria’s death in 1901. Many of the factors that influenced our national economy had a concordant influence on the number of sovereigns produced between 1871 and 1901.