Coin and Paper Money Collecting/1897 British gold sovereign
I have an 1897 British gold sovereign with no maker's mark above the date (I am able to see the maker's marks clearly in the examples on the internet). The coin's detail is very good in other areas so I do not believe that it has worn off. Given that this is not a counterfeit, does this mean it was struck in London? If so, what might it's value be compared to Sidney and Melbourne mints? Thank you
ANSWER: Hi Pamela,
The M and S mint marks are the only ones found on 1897 sovereigns. There were no full sovereigns produced at the London mint that year, only half-sovereigns. If the mint mark is not worn or removed with a tool, it may be a jewelry copy. This is not an uncommon practice, though most jewelry copies I have seen are of the George V types and often stamped with the makers marks. The good news is that when talking about a coin that has been circulated, there is no difference in value. The jewelry pieces are made typically of the same purity gold as the real coin, and the value for these is generally gold bullion value unless the coin is in excellent condition.
Many of these are well made and very convincing, while some have differences that show they were not made at an official mint.
A clear, close-up picture would help confirm this if you would like to attach one to a follow-up question.
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QUESTION: Thank you so much for your prompt reply, Dmitry. I have attached some pictures although I don't know if they are clear enough for you to tell.
Hi again Pamela,
Sorry for the delay in answering your follow-up.
Good news, this is a 1/2 sovereign and not a full one. It's an official piece and in very nice condition too. Practical value on it now would be $225 to $250, which is $50 to $75 above gold bullion value.
Thanks again for the question! =)