The Sovereign: Witness to History
The Sovereign is steeped in history. Its first minting, in 1489, was designed - after a half-century of bloody civil war - to celebrate a new-found stability in Henry VII's England. It became a symbol of strength and security through the tumultuous reigns of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I. And when it was reintroduced by George III in 1817 it became an abiding symbol of Britain's international dominance and the growth of the British Empire.
The Sovereign remained in general circulation for a century, setting the standard for world trade through the reigns of George III, William IV, Victoria, Edward VII and George V. Only the cataclysm of the Great War led to it no longer being minted in Britain, and largely replaced by paper money.
Shortly after the accession of Her Majesty The Queen, The Sovereign was reintroduced in a new role - as a coin prized by collectors the world over. And The Queen's coinage portraits, on the obverse of every coin, continue to bear witness to one of the most remarkable eras in British history.
During her reign, four definitive portraits have adorned The Queen's coinage. 2015 is the final year of the fourth coinage portrait, designed by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS. A new portrait will soon appear - and The Sovereign 2015 is the final opportunity to purchase this iconic coin bearing this much-loved image.