Sovereign 1918, Coin from United Kingdom - detailed information

Sovereign 1918, Coin from United Kingdom (demonetised 1971)
CoinSovereign 1918

A gold coin (22.05 mm diameter with milled edge) featuring the effigy of King George V facing left; around, GEORGIVS V D.G. BRITT: OMN: REX F:D: IND: IMP:.

The reverse features St. George on horseback holding a short sword in his right hand, the horse rearing to right over a fallen dragon which has a broken lance in its chest; in exergue, the date, 1918 and the artist's initials B.P.; the mint mark is in the ground above the middle of the date.

This was the first and only issue of pre-decimal sovereign coins in India.

Indian gold coin was not legal tender. In 1864 the Indian government authorised the acceptance of Imperial sovereigns and half-sovereigns in payments to the Treasury at the rate of 10 and 5 rupees respectively but the coins were not made legal tender. In 1868 sovereigns and half-sovereigns minted in Sydney were added to the Imperial issues as acceptable in payment to Treasury. From 1871 Sydney produced Imperial types (both St. George and Shield reverses) as did the new mint at Melbourne from 1872. From the 1870s there was an expectation that the mohur coinage would be replaced by sovereigns, to the extent that coining mohurs ceased for a time from 1891. In 1899, the year that the Perth Branch of the Royal mint began production of sovereigns, Imperial gold sovereigns were declared legal tender alongside the silver rupee and it was decided that a mint would be established in Bombay to strike sovereigns. For a mint outside Britain to produce the sovereign it had to be a Branch of the Royal Mint. Building work on the new mint was begun but the concept was abandoned in 1903.

World War I however brought about a crisis in availability of silver and copper which saw India move to a greater reliance on paper money. The issues of paper were backed by gold bullion and a variety of gold coin. To simplify matters it was decided that this gold should be coined into sovereigns. An area of the Bombay Mint was set aside and isolated from other mint activities and was proclaimed a branch of the Royal Mint. Dies were provided for sovereigns from London (as was the case for all branch mints) and production began on 15 August 1918. The coins are distinguished by the mint mark I at the centre of the ground below St. George. 1,296,033 sovereigns were struck but there was no further call for gold coinage and the branch was closed in April 1919.

MintMint markTotal Mintage
Melbourne Mint Letter M 4,969,493 (5.0 million)
Perth Mint Letter P 3,812,884 (3.8 million)
Sydney Mint Letter S 3,716,000 (3.7 million)
Bombay Mint Letter I 1,295,372 (1.3 million)
Royal Mint Ottawa Letter C 106,516
Obverse
United Kingdom / Sovereign 1918 - obverse photo

Head of King George V facing left; around, GEORGIVS V D.G. BRITT: OMN: REX F:D: IND: IMP:

Obverse Inscription GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Reverse
United Kingdom / Sovereign 1918 - reverse photo

St. George on horseback holding a short sword in his right hand, the horse rearing to right over a fallen dragon which has a broken lance in its chest; in exergue, the date, 1918 and the artist's initials B.P.; the mint mark is in the ground above the middle of the date.

Reverse Inscription 1918
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone
Notes

Ottawa Mint sovereigns do not seem to be listed in Krause catalogues.

Museum Victoria states that "1,296,033 sovereigns were struck" at the Bombay Mint, but the Catalogue of British Commonwealth Coins 1649 - 1971 lists 1,295,372. The difference could be due to proofs included in one figure but not the other.

Additional information:

[Book] Pridmore, Fred. 1980. The Coins of the British Commonwealth of Nations, Part 4, India. 2., 105 Pages

Sovereign 1918: Known varieties
Variety Proof (Bombay Mint)
Mintage Issued: unknown
Variety Prooflike restrike (Bombay Mint)
Mintage Issued: unknown
Sovereign 1918: References to Information Used
SourceEditionAboutLinkNotes
Museums Victoria Collections 2016 Coin description link
Renniks, Australian Coin and Banknote Values 1965 Mint Sydney Mint, Melbourne Mint and Perth Mint
Remick, Catalogue of British Commonwealth Coins 1971 Mint Royal Mint Ottawa and Bombay Mint
Renniks, Australian Coin and Banknote Values 1965 Mintage Sydney Mint, Melbourne Mint and Perth Mint mintage
Remick, Catalogue of British Commonwealth Coins 1971 Mintage Royal Mint Ottawa and Bombay Mint mintage
Remick, Catalogue of British Commonwealth Coins 1971 Varieties Proof (Bombay Mint)
Showing 48 from a total of 148 coins of type: Sovereign (Pre-Decimal)
Coin NameMintageEffigyLegend
Sovereign 1898 12,418,485 Queen Victoria - Veiled Head VICTORIA DEI . GRA . BRITT . REGINA . FID . DEF . IND . IMP
Sovereign 1899 17,045,127 Queen Victoria - Veiled Head VICTORIA DEI . GRA . BRITT . REGINA . FID . DEF . IND . IMP
Sovereign 1900 20,604,734 Queen Victoria - Veiled Head VICTORIA DEI . GRA . BRITT . REGINA . FID . DEF . IND . IMP
Sovereign 1901 11,467,982 Queen Victoria - Veiled Head VICTORIA DEI . GRA . BRITT . REGINA . FID . DEF . IND . IMP
Sovereign 1902 16,122,198 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT: OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1903 19,891,190 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT. OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1904 21,278,022 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT. OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1905 17,198,434 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT. OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1906 21,746,651 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT. OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1907 29,302,643 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT. OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1908 21,702,207 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT: OMN: REX F:D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1909 21,784,151 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT. OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1910 32,287,808 King Edward VII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VII D:G: BRITT. OMN: REX F: D: IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1911 40,048,431 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D. G. BRITT: OMN: REX F. D. IND: IMP:
Sovereign 1912 39,292,322 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1913 33,750,854 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1914 20,118,033 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1915 27,652,715 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1916 8,171,636 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1917 7,741,314 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1918 13,900,265 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1919 5,480,498 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1920 3,311,196 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1921 3,339,481 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1922 3,485,190 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1923 3,051,743 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1924 2,139,740 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1925 21,276,258 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1926 13,663,346 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1927 18,073,404 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1928 19,981,682 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1929 14,067,451 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1930 12,020,682 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1931 9,743,139 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1932 1,066,680 King George V - Bare Head GEORGIVS V D.G.BRITT: OMN: REX F.D.IND:IMP:
Sovereign 1937 Edward VIII (not released) 6 King Edward VIII - Bare Head EDWARDVS VIII D : G : BR : OMN : REX F : D : IND : IMP.
Sovereign 1937 (Proof only) 5,501 King George VI - Bare Head GEORGIVS VI D : G : BR : OMN : REX F : D : IND : IMP.
Sovereign 1953 (not released) unknown Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH II DEI GRA: BRITT: OMN: REGINA F: D: +
Sovereign 1957 2,072,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1958 8,700,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH · II · DEI · GRATIA · REGINA · F : D : +
Sovereign 1959 1,385,228 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1962 3,000,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1963 7,400,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1964 3,000,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1965 3,800,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1966 7,050,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1967 5,000,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Sovereign 1968 4,203,000 Queen Elizabeth II - First Portrait ELIZABETH . II . DEI . GRATIA . REGINA . F: D: +
Showing 101 to 148 of 148 Coins.
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Sovereign 1918: Details
CountryUnited Kingdom
CurrencyPound Sterling (pre-decimal)
Coin TypeSovereign (St George)
Issued1918
MonarchKing George V
EffigyKing George V - Bare Head, by Bertram Mackennal
Face Value1 (x Pound)
Total Mintage13,900,265 (13.9 million)
CurrentNo; demonetised 1971
Material0.9167 Gold
DesignerBenedetto Pistrucci
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
ShapeRound
OrientationCoin Alignment (Axis 6)
Size22.050 mm
Thickness1.520 mm
Mass7.988 g
OCC IDRDKL-MOMK-CPXR-ONZB
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Sovereign 1918: Photos
ImageDetails
Coin - Sovereign, New South Wales, Australia, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Sydney Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, New South Wales, Australia, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Sydney Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, Victoria, Australia, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Melbourne Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, Victoria, Australia, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Melbourne Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, Western Australia, Australia, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Perth Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, Western Australia, Australia, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Perth Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, Canada, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Ottawa Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, Canada, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Ottawa Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, India, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Bombay Mint.
Source
Coin - Sovereign, India, 1918
Copyright: Museums Victoria / CC BY
Author:
Notes: Bombay Mint.
Source
India 1918-I sovereign
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Author:
Notes: Bombay Mint.
Source
India 1918-I sovereign
Copyright: CoinFactsWiki / CC BY-SA
Author:
Notes: Bombay Mint.
Source
Sovereign 1918: Catalogue Reference IDs
SourceReference ID
Friedberg, Gold Coins of the WorldAustralia 38 (Sydney), 39 (Melbourne), 40 (Perth)
Krause, Standard Catalog of World CoinsAustralia KM# 29 (Sydney, Melbourne, Perth Mints)
Spink, Coins of England and the United Kingdom4003 (Sydney), 3999 (Melbourne) and 4001 (Perth)
McDonald, Australian Coins and BanknotesMcD 258 (Sydney), 259 (Melbourne) and 260 (Perth)
Renniks, Australian Coin and Banknote ValuesS165 (Sydney), S166 (Melbourne) and S167 (Perth)
Friedberg, Gold Coins of the WorldCanada 2 (Royal Mint Ottawa)
Spink, Coins of England and the United Kingdom3997 (Ottawa Mint)
Friedberg, Gold Coins of the WorldIndia 15 (Bombay Mint)
Krause, Standard Catalog of World CoinsIndia KM# 525A (Bombay Mint)
Spink, Coins of England and the United Kingdom3998 (Bombay Mint)