Gold Sovereign Coins

Gold sovereign coins are Capital Gain Tax free and are one of the most iconic British symbols. The fact that their packaging is specifically designed for long term storage and transportation, makes them extremely popular with bullion investors.

The Gold Sovereign Coin is timeless in its desirability as a gold investment. Its fame and historical significance mean many consider it to be the Royal Mint’s flagship coin, and the consistency of the production quality make it still one of the finest in the world.

A uniquely tax efficient and globally renown gold purchase, gold sovereigns are often chosen to safeguard wealth, and access the fluid market s well as provide a flexible celebrate a special event or milestone. The classic image of St George and the dragon crafted by Benedetto Pistrucci in 1817 is a masterpiece of design that still appears on the sovereign today, and choosing it brings a special feeling of history and courage. And with an ability to hold value very well over time, gold sovereigns an excellent investment all round.

You can buy a variety of UK Gold Sovereign coins including:


2014 Gold Sovereign
QE2 Coin

QE2 Decimal and Pre-decimal Gold
Sovereign Coins

QE2 Decimal Gold Sovereign

Launched on 24/11/13 by the Royal Mint the new UK 2014 gold sovereign coin is destined to be one of the most popular sovereign coins to date 

Buying gold sovereign coins with various dates, provides a cost saving compared to buying brand new sovereigns. Prices for mixed gold sovereigns

Capital Gain Tax free

Sovereigns manufactured in 1837 or later are Capital Gains Tax free in the UK - more details

How old is the sovereign?

It’s hard not to associate sovereigns with visions of large, theatrical treasure chests, and given that the Royal Mint have been producing gold sovereigns on and off since 1489, it’s easy to see why. The history of this coin is extraordinary, and it was King Henry VII’s splendidly regal portrait on the obverse that led to the coins name - sovereign.

The notional value then was one pound, or 20 shillings, but as bullion there has never been a value mark on a gold sovereign coin of any kind. Of most importance was its size. The largest and most beautiful coin ever released at that time, it certainly achieved the aim of promoting the status of the reigning Tudor dynasty. So much so that each new monarch in turn borrowed this golden strategy of self-promotion.

Henry VIII introduced more variety, with a half-sovereign that circulated along with the full gold sovereign for much of the 16th century, before being overtaken by the guinea and the unite. These original sovereigns were 23 carat gold and weighed a hefty 240 grains but were reduced in purity by Henry VIII to what still is the ‘gold standard’ - 22 carats, or 91.67%.

In 1604, gold sovereigns were discontinued, and instead Unites, Laurels and broads, and guineas were produced. It took 200 years for the gold sovereign coin to be reinstated in the production lines again. At a smaller size and new weight of 113 grains, the new look gold sovereign coin came back with a very stylish redesign. For it was in 1817 that the first ever gold sovereigns were made bearing Pistrucci’s now classic St George and the dragon.

A legend of the Royal Mint, Benedetto Pistrucci had only been in the country for a couple of years when he was offered the commission of designing a new coinage portrait. George III was his subject, and the end result was a series of landmark images and a stunning new gold sovereign design. Pistrucci’s St George and the dragon was so well-loved it has endured till now and appears on any gold sovereign you buy from Gold Made Simple ®. The weight, size, and that design have not changed since 1817, and it is struck for the investors and collectors who continue to relish and value coins of such importance.

A billion sovereigns

According to the Royal Mint, a billion gold sovereigns have been minted over the years. Even when you take into account that much of those will be melted gold sovereigns that have been subsequently recoined a number of times, it is still an extraordinary figure, befitting an extraordinary coin. But for so high a number, only 1% of all gold sovereigns ever minted are supposedly still in a condition deemed ‘collectible’. The Victorian era saw a great many worn sovereigns and half-sovereigns removed from circulation for melting, and any gold sovereigns sent to the USA were usually melted into bars due to Federal law.

A gold sovereign in circulation has a life expectancy of around 15 years, before it has seen enough wear to reduce the weight below the minimal legal value to constitute a sovereign. Of course, some wear is not accidental. There are many tricks of the trade to cheating a sovereign that have been utilised over the centuries.

Keeping your gold safe

Fort Knox is a byword for security, and The Royal Mint - whilst not as readily quoted - has to be an equally secure environment. All Royal Mint gold coins are produced in the precious metals unit, which itself is guarded by the Ministry of Defence Police in a section sealed off from the rest of the mint. So once in the real world, how does counterfeiting occur and how do you stop it?

Gold sovereigns will withstand a certain degree of weight loss. Removing enough dust from enough coins can give a valuable, and virtually invisible, reward. Unscrupulous characters have throughout history worn invisible amounts from Gold Sovereigns using chemicals, files, and even a special process called ‘sweating’, the process of putting lots of gold sovereign coins in a bag, shaking it and collecting the dust that falls off which can be melted and used as bullion. Of course, there are other more sophisticated methods. Criminals have been known to try drilling small holes in the coin to extract gold from the core, before hammering the holes closed. This is tricky in a sovereign, but becomes easier the larger the coin is. This is one reason for the limited production of the far bigger double sovereigns and quintuple sovereigns.

So how do you spot a fake? You can spot counterfeit gold sovereigns through visual comparison with a genuine coin, by weighing or measuring against the universal standards, or by using a coin gauge. Counterfeit gold coins have been recorded appearing for centuries, but nowadays they primarily pose a threat to numismatic collectors, with coins that are gold sovereigns containing legitimate bullion, being doctored to look rarer than they are. This is fortunately not something any investor needs to worry about when investing in gold sovereigns with Gold Made Simple ®!

The Krugerrand falls victim to counterfeiting much more often than the sovereign, because it is larger and more economical to attempt to copy. But even with Krugerrands, it is hard to make a convincing counterfeit gold coin for two simple reasons. Firstly, gold is so heavy. It’s unique density makes it far heavier than many metals and fake gold coins will usually be oversize, underweight or, in many instances, both. Using lead would make a counterfeit sovereign that is still 35% too light. But get the weight and diameter right, and it will still be over 50% too thick. The other reason is, of course, the colour. Gold is valuable precisely because of that colour, and if it were easy to fake, gold would likely never have become the object of desire it has.


These days all modern gold sovereigns come out of the Royal Mint in Llantrisant, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Wales, though mints were established all over the world to exploit local gold in those areas. You can identify the origin of a coin from a single letter stamped into the coin itself - S for Sydney, P for Perth, B for Bombay, etc. Each and every gold sovereign released from the Welsh-based mint is of course struck in the identical 22 carat Crown gold as the initial modern sovereigns back in 1817. By using an alloy, each gold sovereign coin struck is much more resistant to scratching and damage in handling.

The new gold sovereigns are not exactly the same though. The Pistrucci design was reworked in 2007 for a new master tool. By using traditional engraving techniques with digital technology the classic sovereign design has been refreshed for a new generation of investors, striking the perfect balance between quality, value and heritage.

Buy gold sovereign coins:

We offer discounts when you buy gold sovereign coin packs and for large orders eg:-