1985 Proof Half-Sovereign


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1985 Proof Half-Sovereign

General Description: Half-Sovereigns

The 1985 Proof Half-Sovereign is an example of the Gold Half-Sovereign and is a gold coin, being as it suggests, half the value and half of the gold weight of a gold sovereign. Today, the half-sovereign is a commemorative coin, not issued every year and often only collected as part of a set.

The Half-Sovereign wa introduced a long time ago, in 1544 during the reign of Henry VII. However it was discontinued in 1604 (along with full sovereigns) and no more was minted until 1817. Production ended again in 1926 (1933 in Australia) and except for a few special issues during the Coronation years, it was 1980 when we saw half-sovereigns again.

As the value is half of one sovereign, that give the half-sovereign a face value of half a pound or ten shillings – 50p in post-decimal money.

The Obverse is the Monarch’s head (Elizabeth II) and the Reverse is the famous St George and the Dragon by Benedetto Pistrucci.

The mintage for the 1985 Proof Half-Sovereign was 25,000 although half of these were issued as part of a set.

Specifications for Gold Half-Sovereign Proof

  • Weight: 3.99 g
  • Diameter: 19.30 mm
  • Thickness: 0.99 mm
  • Purity: 22 carat = 91.67% (11/12ths gold, 1/12th copper. Adding copper makes the coin more scratch and dent resistant)
  • Gold Content: 3.6575 g = 0.1176 troy ounce
  • Face value: £0.50 = 10 shillings (decimal: 50 pence)
  • Monarch: Elizabeth II
  • These specifications apply to half-sovereigns from 1817.