The Historic Sovereign Collection by The Royal Mint
Although we make up our our superior quality British gold sovereign mintmark sets, we also buy and sell various 'collections' marketed originally by the Royal Mint. The coins we select for our own sets are almost always superior to those packaged by our competitors, although the Royal Mint do manage to provide impressive packaging and presentation for their "collections", which helps to justify their much higher prices.
Save Over £500 & Get Better Coins! *
The Royal Mint, not content with its monopoly in producing new sovereigns, has for some years now been buying sovereigns from the numismatic trade, and marketing them to its "Coin Club" members (customers) at prices which seem surprisingly high to us, individually and as "Collections". Sadly because most of its customers are not coin collectors, but ordinary members of the public who appear to trust the Royal Mint without question.
The Historic Sovereign Collection
We are still editing this page, and don't know what the Royal Mint charge for all the different types they offer, however we did note a Gillick Portrait Sovereign, as shown boxed in our photograph. The Mint's price for this coin is currently £199*, complete with box and certificate. We sell all ten dates of this portrait for at least £50 per coin less*, and although we don't include a plush box and printed "certificate" in our price, our coins are almost always in better condition, because it's part of our job to grade and select superior quality coins.
Nice Box, Shame About the Coins!
If we were making up these sovereign sets, we would carefully select the coins for grade. Usually, we offer a choice of grades for many of our sets, which provides affordable prices for those on a tight budget, and better coins for those who can afford them. In all cases we have yet seen, we sell our very best graded sets at less than the Royal Mint's "Take it or Leave it" grade, while our lower graded sets are even less as one would expect. As coin and bullion dealers, we are ideally place to be able to source a selection of different sovereign grades almost constantly.
What really surprises us (and shouldn't by now), and dismays us, is that many of the Mint's coins are very low quality, especially considering the premium price they are charging.
Just look at the reverse of the 1957 sovereign, from the Royal Mint's own website; it is rather streaky. For some reason, this is quite common on this date, but we would have tried to find a better one as part of a collection.
The Victoria Jubilee sovereign in our photographs is from a Royal Mint Historic Sovereigns collection, and its quite worn, only slightly better than Fine condition. Although we sell sovereigns of this grade, we do so at a much lower price. We have touched up the photograph, removing many scratches and scuffs, so it looks better than the actual coin.
The obverse of the 1957 sovereign is badly scuffed and bagmarked, and again while this is common on sovereigns of this type, we would have picked out a far cleaner coin for the price charged.
Not all the coins in the Mint's collections are as bad, some are quite nice, and perfectly acceptable for their age, but when you consider the price charged for them, they ought to be nice!
Better Coins for Less! *
Buy from us, and you will get better coins for less money.*
We don't know the Royal Mint's actual pricing on all the coins in the Historic Sovereign Collections, but we do have a very good idea, as we see their pricing on other similar offerings. The Gillick Portrait (1957 to 1967) is currently (3rd May 2008) on sale at £199 at the Mint, compared with our pricing of between £145 and £150 for Uncirculated grade, depending on the coin's date . We suspect they charge more for many of the older coins.
*Relevant Dates & Other Information
This page was first created in or around May 2008. As it is no longer a simple matter for us to determine our original publication date of text on this page, in order to ensure our comments are considered in their historical context, we note the following, and will add any more data as it becomes available:
- All price comparisons were correct at the time of writing.
- Our mintmark sets are all of George V sovereigns, so they are directly comparable with the Royal Mint's sets.
- The Gillick Portrait (1957 to 1967) was on sale at £199 by the Mint, on 3rd May 2008, compared with our pricing of between £145 and £150 for Uncirculated grade, depending on date.
- The Royal Mint may not be offering any similar sovereigns or sets currently.
Government Wealth Warning
We wonder if some modern issue coin offerings should come with a "Government Wealth Warning".