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The year 1913 saw the last Sovereign struck before the world would know the horrors of total war. After the First World War, the use of The Sovereign as a circulating coin ended, following a history that stretched back to 1489.

Today, we may take the right to vote for granted but 1913 is a year remembered for the sacrifices of the people dedicated to the Suffragette movement. When we turn 18, regardless of our gender or class, we have a voice at the polls but just over 100 years ago before the outbreak of the First World War, a narrow section of society held that right – just 60% of male householders over the age of 21. In 1913, one of the most shocking moments of the twentieth century occurred when the suffragette Emily Davison threw herself in front of George V’s horse at the Epsom Derby, becoming the first woman to give her life in the fight for female emancipation.

In May of that year, the Suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst received a sentence at the Old Bailey and was sentenced to 9 months imprisonment for conspiracy but was released the following month on grounds of ill health. Later that year she would deliver her Freedom or Death speech, which many consider one of the greatest speeches of the twentieth century, and asked her audience, ‘is there any limit to what we can do except the limit we put upon ourselves?’

Specification

Specification Value
Denomination Sovereign
Alloy 22 Carat Gold
Weight 7.98 g
Diameter 22.05mm
Reverse Designer Benedetto Pistrucci
Specification Value
Obverse Designer Bertram Mackennal
Quality Circulating
Year 1913
Pure Metal Type Gold
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