Five years after the end of the First World War, the Government continued to grapple with the economic fallout. Amidst the lingering post-war gloom it was decided to make the royal wedding a public affair to lift the spirits of the nation – a break with tradition. Prince Albert (later George VI) married Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon in a ceremony on 26 April at Westminster Abbey with the couple becoming The Duke and Duchess of York. Elizabeth laid her bouquet at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, starting a tradition that continues to the present day, before the couple set off to enjoy a honeymoon in Surrey and Scotland.
Production of Sovereigns in London had more or less come to an end by 1918, but in branch mints, limited batches continued to be struck. In 1923 Sovereigns were manufactured in three branch mints in Australia: Sydney, Melbourne and Perth, while a new operation in Pretoria, South Africa produced an extremely limited amount – less than 600 of a total mintage of around three and a half million. These were some of the last Sovereigns ever struck and many have been melted down. Distinguished by their own unique mint mark placed beneath Benedetto Pistrucci’s classic St George and the dragon design, they feature the portrait of George V by Bertram Mackennal on the obverse.
|Alloy||22 Carat Gold|
|Reverse Designer||Benedetto Pistrucci|
|Obverse Designer||Bertram Mackennal|
|Pure Metal Type||Gold|