Some noticed that I did not post a Weekly World Numismatic News last week. It is nice to see that so many readers are paying attention. This week, I will combine the news of the last two weeks with some highlights.
We Know Who Owns the ’33 Double Eagle
The 1933 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle is arguably the world’s most famous coin. The only coin of its type legal to own sold for $7,590,020 in a Sotheby/Stack’s auction to an anonymous buyer in 2002. We learned that the owner is shoe designer Stuart Weitzman and will be selling the coin along with two extremely rare stamps at an exclusive auction. The auction will include a rare plate block of the famous Inverted Jenny stamp, the holy grail for stamp collectors. Sotheby’s is estimating the coin’s value at $10-15 million. I predict it will sell for over $12 million.
British Coin Sells for £1 Million
A rare gold coin with the portrait of King Edward VIII sold for £1 million. King Edward VIII was the shortest-serving monarch of the 20th century. He abdicated the throne 11 months after his coronation to marry a twice-divorced American woman. At the time, the British people felt that the divorces and her ex-husbands were living as an insult to the Church of England. Rather than fight the church, Edward gave up the throne. During his reign, the Royal Mint struck only three £5 gold coins and never circulated. The sale makes this coin the most expensive British coin.
A Britannia of Color
Britannia, the female allegorical symbol of Britain, is depicted on bullion coins as a woman of color. Early in U.S. coin history, Liberty has appeared in ways similar to Britannia. See the image on the Seated Liberty Dollar for an example. Following the United States’ use of a woman of color to represent Liberty, the Royal Mint mint designers produce their own. The new designs are being lauded in the cynical British press for their art and its symbolism. The Royal Mint notes that Anglo-Saxons do not dominate British territories and members of the Commonwealth Realm. It is important to understand that the coin was planned and designed before the Royal Family’s recent controversies.
U.S. Wins COTY
In case you missed it, the 2019 Apollo 11 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing Commemorative five-ounce silver proof coin win the prestigious Coin of the Year competition. World Coin News sponsors the annual competition. Nominations, reviews, and voting are held the year following the coins’ issue. They announce the winner the following year. Aside from winning COTY, the coin won the Best Contemporary Event Coin and Best Silver Coin categories. It is one of the best designs by the U.S. Mint in recent years.
And now the news…