World Coins

Market Analysis: British Proof gold

A 1656 Oliver Cromwell gold Proof pattern broad of 20 shillings graded Proof 63 Cameo features engraver Thomas Simon’s characteristic stippling on the portrait and realized $138,000 at Heritage’s Jan. 8 Platinum Night session.

Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions.

Collectors gravitate to English Proof gold coinage because of its beauty, rarity, and direct link to Great Britain’s history. Some wonderful examples of the art of engraving are found among these, as seen in the 1656 Oliver Cromwell gold Proof pattern broad of 20 shillings, graded Proof 63 Cameo by Numismatic Guaranty Corp. that sold for $138,000 at Heritage on Jan. 8.

Engraved by Thomas Simon with his characteristic stippled, textured effect on the devices, Heritage praises its “pure, sun-gold appearances that highlight exacting devices” and “provide instant verification of additional care and attention to detail that accompanied the piece’s production.” The coin showcased Cromwell, the leader of the anti-monarchist Parliamentarians, while exhibiting improvements in coin production. Numismatic exhibitors may be familiar with a former owner: Thomas Law, who won multiple Best of Show awards at the American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money conventions.

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