Gothic Florin, Coin Type from United Kingdom - detailed information

Gothic Florin, Coin Type from United Kingdom (issued 1851 - 1887)
Coin TypeGothic Florin

The pre-decimal florin (2s) was a unit of currency equalling two shillings, or one tenth of a pound sterling, or twenty-four pence. The denomination was introduced in 1849 (with a pattern minted in 1848) as the first move towards decimalisation of the British coinage.

The first type of florin was the so-called Godless Florin, the obverse of which omitted the traditional "DEI GRATIA" ("By the Grace of God") part of the Queen's legend. After much public outcry, this second type replaced it in 1851, showing the full legend. This second issue is known as the Gothic Florin because of the use of Gothic lettering in the legend.

The general style of the florins differs considerably from that of the rest of the contemporary coinage, especially in the obverse which uses the so-called "Gothic Portrait" of Queen Victoria not used on other British coins, excepting the Gothic Crown. This design was issued until 1887, when the Jubilee Florin was introduced on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of Queen Victoria's accession to the throne.

The composition is Sterling Silver (0.925 silver) and the coins have 0.3364 oz ASW (ounce of Absolute Silver Weight). When the currency became decimal in 1971, by which point the denomination was already debased to copper-nickel, florins were re-denominated as ten new pence; they remained legal tender until 1993, when a smaller type of ten pence replaced them.

Obverse
United Kingdom / Gothic Florin - obverse photo

Within a decorated border, the obverse of the coin shows the young crowned bust of Queen Victoria, facing left; the effigy is by William Wyon and is widely known as her "Gothic Portrait".

The Queen is crowned with the Crown of Saint Edward, which has been used in the coronation of English monarchs since the 13th century. Her hair is braided and held back in a bun, with a braid looping around her ear. Her dress is decorated with rose, thistle and shamrock - the national plants of the constituent nations of the United Kingdom (England, Scotland and Ireland respectively).

On earlier issues, the artist's initials W.W. are near the edge below the portrait; this was later replaced by a die number, while the last issues had neither designer's initials nor die number.

Around, the monarch's legend: Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: (abbreviated from Victoria dei gratia britanniarum regina, fidei defensor - Victoria, by the Grace of God, Queen, Defender of the Faith); on later issues "brit" was changed to "britt". Following that is the date of issue in Roman numerals, e.g. mdccclii for 1852. The lettering is in ornate Gothic script, giving the coin type its name, the Gothic Florin.

Obverse Inscription Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: [year]
Reverse
United Kingdom / Gothic Florin - reverse photo

Within a roped border, the reverse design depicts crowned cruciform (in a cross pattern) shields bearing the three lions passant of England (twice, in positions 1 and 3), the lion rampant of Scotland (2), and the harp of Ireland (4). The shields are contained within a deeply tressured circular panel. In the angles are two roses, a shamrock and a thistle - the national plants of England, Scotland and Ireland respectively. In the centre there is a four-leafed flower.

Around above, interrupted by St Edward's crown on top of the English shield, the name of the denomination: One florin; around below, its value as a fraction of the Pound Sterling: one tenth of a pound. As on the obverse, the lettering is in ornate Gothic style.

Reverse Inscription One florin one tenth of a pound
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone
Coin Type: Gothic Florin - (35) Coins
Coin NameMintageEffigyLegend
Florin 1851 Gothic 1,540 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdcccli.
Florin 1852 Gothic 1,014,552 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclii.
Florin 1853 Gothic 3,919,950 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdcccliii
Florin 1854 Gothic 550,413 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdcccliv
Florin 1855 Gothic 831,017 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclv
Florin 1856 Gothic 2,201,760 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclvi
Florin 1857 Gothic 1,671,120 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclvii
Florin 1858 Gothic 2,239,380 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclviii
Florin 1859 Gothic 2,568,060 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclix
Florin 1860 Gothic 1,475,100 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclx.
Florin 1862 Gothic 594,000 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclxii
Florin 1863 Gothic 938,520 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclxiii
Florin 1864 Gothic 1,861,200 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclxiv
Florin 1865 Gothic 1,580,040 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclxv
Florin 1866 Gothic 914,760 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclxvi
Florin 1867 Gothic 423,720 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: brit: reg: f: d: mdccclxvii
Florin 1868 Gothic 869,940 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxviii
Florin 1869 Gothic 297,000 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxix
Florin 1870 Gothic 1,080,648 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxx
Florin 1871 Gothic 3,425,605 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxi
Florin 1872 Gothic 7,199,690 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxii
Florin 1873 Gothic 5,921,839 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxiii
Florin 1874 Gothic 1,642,630 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxiv
Florin 1875 Gothic 1,117,030 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxv
Florin 1876 Gothic 580,034 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxvi
Florin 1877 Gothic 682,292 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxvii
Florin 1878 Gothic 1,786,680 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxviii
Florin 1879 Gothic 1,512,247 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxix
Florin 1880 Gothic 2,161,170 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxx
Florin 1881 Gothic 2,576,337 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxxi
Florin 1883 Gothic 3,555,667 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxxiii
Florin 1884 Gothic 1,447,379 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxxiv
Florin 1885 Gothic 1,758,210 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxxv
Florin 1886 Gothic 591,773 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxxvi
Florin 1887 Gothic 1,776,903 Queen Victoria - Gothic Portrait Victoria d: g: britt: reg: f: d: mdccclxxxvii
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Gothic Florin: Details
CountryUnited Kingdom
CurrencyPound Sterling (pre-decimal)
Sub-type ofFlorin (Two Shillings)
From1851
To1887
Face Value2 (x Shilling)
CurrentNo (demonetised 1993)
Material0.925 Silver
DesignerWilliam Wyon
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
ShapeRound
OrientationMedal Alignment (Axis 0)
Size
Mass11.3104 g
Gothic Florin: Photos
ImageDetails
Proof Coin - Florin, Queen Victoria, Great Britain, 1880
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Proof.
Source
Proof Coin - Florin, Queen Victoria, Great Britain, 1880
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Proof.
Source