Royal Mint has been striking coins for more than 1,000 years, but
English commemorative coins are a relatively new phenomenon.
George V celebrated his Silver Jubilee on the throne (that’s a 25-year
anniversary) in 1935, a special silver crown was issued to commemorate
coin is the first true commemorative issue in the history of English
coinage. And though its striking art deco design today is a classic,
contemporary critics did not regard it well.
king’s portrait (by Sir Bertram Mackennal) remained on the obverse,
but Percy Metcalfe’s modernistic treatment of the famous motif of St.
George slaying the dragon generated attention, much of it negative.
The king himself, a noted equestrian, called the stiff St. George on
the horse, “a damned bad rider.”
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750,000 examples were struck, with edge lettering incused. An
additional 2,500 pieces, with edge lettering raised, were issued in
Proof; an example sold by Heritage Auctions in an auction April 10 to
12 is among those latter issues. Graded Proof 63, the coin has a few
hairlines but it sold for a surprisingly strong $1,116.25, considering
that a Proof 65 Ultra Cameo example proceeding it in the same auction
this were a U.S. coin with such a low mintage and popular design, one
might expect an extra digit in the price tag.